Published January 12, 2021

Microsoft Search in classic SharePoint sites

Reference ID: MC233843

MC233843 – We are expanding the reach of Microsoft Search in SharePoint; classic team sites that do not have customized search experience will be updated to the modern Microsoft Search experiences that deliver better personalization and relevance.

Key points

  • Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 57131
  • Timing:
    • Targeted Release (organization and users): end of January 2021 through early February 2021.
    • Standard Release: early February 2021 and complete  mid-March 2021.

How this will affect your organization

When this feature is available, classic team sites that meet certain criteria will switch to using the Microsoft Search search box. As in modern sites, the search box will be at the top of the page in the suite navigation bar. Your users will receive a more consistent search experience, in addition to more personalized and relevant results.

This feature will not affect or disrupt any team sites with:

  • Classic publishing features turned on
  • Custom result types
  • Complex query rules on the default result source.

See a detailed description of which sites will automatically start using the Microsoft Search experience

Prior to change, classic team site with no customizations.


After the change, same site, with Microsoft Search, where the search box has moved to the top of the page, like in modern sites.

What you need to do to prepare

If you have specific team sites that you want to retain the classic search experience, first see if they meet these criteria. If they do, run appropriate PowerShell scripts and set them to use Microsoft Search only on modern pages or on all pages.

  • You can run these commands today, and when the switch becomes available, it will respect your decision to stay with the classic search experience.
  • If you have sites that were not automatically switched over, you can run the PowerShell scripts to switch to the Microsoft Search experience.
  • Should any of your users prefer the classic experience after the upgrade, you can run the PowerShell scripts and switch back to using classic search experience.

You might want to notify your users about this new capability and update your training and documentation as appropriate.

Learn more: Classic pages in SharePoint Online and Microsoft Search.

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