In 2014 I wrote this:
“We have a manual system for handling synonyms in our search. This means that if someone searches for IBS we automatically search for irritable bowel syndrome. I’m currently undertaking a review of these synonyms, a long-winded and problematic process – but well worth doing.“
When I say/said a manual list we started the synonyms in Trip by exploring the top used search terms in Trip (I think it was the top 8-10,000 terms) and manually looking through them to see if any might have synonyms. So, when I came across IBS in the list, I would add irritable bowel syndrome. When a user searched on Trip for IBS we would effectively insert the other term, making it IBS OR irritable bowel syndrome. This is a crude but surprisingly effective system and – with the new back-end work finally coming to the end, it’s time to review them again.
This is what I’m looking at:
This might take a while 🙂