Searching for a Phrase

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You probably encounter cases where you want to find index items containing a specific phrase, sentence, or sequence of terms, rather than sparse occurrences of the keywords throughout the index items. You can use a phrase match query syntax to find such index items. Phrase search isn’t case-sensitive.

  • In the search box, type the phrase, sentence, or term sequence that you want to find, surrounded by double quote marks, and then click Search.

    "financial statements of the United Oil company"

    Only index items containing the exact phrase or sentence are returned. Index items containing sparse or shuffled occurrences of the keywords aren’t returned.

    • Don’t use double quotation marks for a single term. Rather use the + prefix (see Searching for an Exact Term).

    • You can use straight (" ") or alternate pairs of left and right quote marks (such as “ ” or « ») to enclose phrases.

  • Alternatively, you can use any one of the contiguity operators (. : / \ _ - ') between keywords for which you want to only find contiguous occurrences. All these characters have the same effect, so you can use any of them.


    is equivalent to searching "financial statements of the United Oil company".

    financial_statements United_Oil

    is equivalent to searching "financial statements" "United Oil". Only index items containing contiguous occurrences of the exact words financial and statements as well as contiguous occurrences of the exact words united and oil are returned.

    Coveo Search API (January 2016) Exact phrase search is always available, even when the Coveo query syntax (enableQuerySyntax option) is disabled by the search page developer (see Coveo Component Querybox and Query syntax).

If you have querying issues, see Troubleshoot Querying Issues for troubleshooting guidelines.