Perhaps in an attempt to compete with third-party vendors, more Web CMS vendors are offering site search services. CMS Watch reports that 40% of major Web CMS vendors now embed the open source Apache Lucene (news, site) search engine.

For their newest report CMS Watch interviewed web content management customers around the globe to evaluate 42 web content management systems in the marketplace and found that vendors are integrating site search and "and the driver is really Lucene," or so says CMS Watch analyst Kas Thomas.

Lucene is an open source Apache project that was mentioned by the 42 vendors evaluated by CMS Watch. Nearly 40% vendors are offering Lucene -- including Alfresco, Clickability, Day, eZ publish, Hippo and others. Several vendors noted that they were considering it for future versions.

Understand Your Search

Vendors who embed a search engine like Lucene into a Web CMS package can better understand the structure of the Web CMS repository, which as a result, can improve how much relevant data are delivered. As well, bundling site search can help support faceted search.

Which means users can drill down results through direct access to metadata. By integrating various option modules, like the ones offered by Lucene, a search engine can support the kind of advanced features that Google has trained users to expect -- such as stemming, spell-checking and file filters.

Free Doesn't Make Search Better

Yet there may be downsides to bundling. The report indicates that adding the more "productized" options may require more work that vendor platforms can handle or want to take on. The benchmark of the Google Search Appliance is high for a reason.

To be on par with it, vendors are going to have to build their framework to stay in the game. CMS Watch Founder Tony Byrne warns customers to test the maturity and integration of any Lucene OEM and "Make sure your Web CMS vendor didn't just slap in Lucene -- or any other search tool -- just because it's free."