Simple JavaScript Searchbar

JavaScript, Web development

Published: 27.10.2023

Search bars are a very common occurrence on websites. You see them everywhere in all different shapes and sizes. Some are just simple text search bars and some are large complex search bars that will query a database or make API calls.

In this article I will show you how to make a simple text search bar that searches a list of HTML elements.

First things first, create your HTML

  
<input type="text" placeholder="Search fruits..." id="searchBar">
<ul id="fruits-list">
    <li>Apple</li>
    <li>Pear</li>
    <li>Banana</li>
    <li>Orange</li>
</ul>

This code will print a very simple list on the screen that will ook something like this:
Searchbar HTML example

Next, we can write a script tag below this code and start writing our JavaScript. We start with adding a “keyup” event listener to the text search bar. JavaScript allows you to write the same code in different ways. In this example I will use an “arrow function” and I get the search value from the “evt” parameter.

  
<script>
    document.getElementById("searchbar").addEventlistener("keyup", evt => {
    	const searchValue = evt.target.value.toLowerCase()
    })
</script>

Now every time you type inside the text field, the value of what you typed is parsed to lowercase letters and saved in the searchValue variable. The reason we use .toLowerCase() is to make the search bar non-case-sensitive.

Next thing we do; we select all the <li> elements inside our <ul> element and loop over them to check their content.

  
<script>
    document.getElementById("searchbar").addEventlistener("keyup", evt => {
    	const searchValue = evt.target.value.toLowerCase()
        for (const li of document.querySelector("#fruits-list")) {
            const content = li.innerText.toLowerCase()
            li.style.display = content.includes(searchValue) ? "list-item" : "none"
        }
    })
</script>

The content of the list item is it’s innerText, parsed to lowercase to ignore case-sensitivity. To change the visibility of the <li> element we use a Conditional (ternary) operator. Conditional operators: Operand one is a condition, the part after the “?” will be used if condition is “truthy”, the part after “:” will be used if the condition is ”falsy”.

This code will now show the element when it’s text contains your searched string, and hide it if when it does contain.

There is a lot of different ways to write this code and to achieve the same results. This article shows a very simple & compact JavaScript search bar.

Final code:

<input type="text" placeholder="Search fruits..." id="searchBar">
<ul id="fruits-list">
    <li>Apple</li>
    <li>Pear</li>
    <li>Banana</li>
    <li>Orange</li>
</ul>  
<script>
    document.getElementById("searchbar").addEventlistener("keyup", evt => {
    	const searchValue = evt.target.value.toLowerCase()
        for (const li of document.querySelector("#fruits-list")) {
            const content = li.innerText.toLowerCase()
            li.style.display = content.includes(searchValue) ? "list-item" : "none"
        }
    })
</script>

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