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Guides / Getting started / Quick start

Quickstart with the PHP API client

Supported platforms

The Algolia PHP API client requires PHP version 7.2 or later.

Install

Install the package via Composer:

$
composer require algolia/algoliasearch-client-php

Install manually

  1. Download the client from GitHub and unzip it in your project folder.
  2. Inside the client root folder, run ./bin/install-dependencies-without-composer.
  3. In your code, require the autoload.php in the client root folder.

Framework integrations

Algolia provides integrations for the Laravel and Symfony frameworks.

Quickstart sample app

To download and run a self-contained example, see the PHP quickstart on GitHub.

Initialize the client

To start, you need to initialize the client. To do this, you need your Application ID and API Key. You can find both on your Algolia account.

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// composer autoload
require __DIR__ . '/vendor/autoload.php';

// if you aren't using composer
// require_once 'path/to/algolia/folder/autoload.php';

use Algolia\AlgoliaSearch\SearchClient;

$client = SearchClient::create('YourApplicationID', 'YourWriteAPIKey');

$index = $client->initIndex('your_index_name');

The API key displayed here is your Admin API key. To maintain security, never use your Admin API key on your frontend, nor share it with anyone. In your frontend, only use the search-only API key or any other key that has search-only rights.

Push data

Without any prior configuration, you can start indexing 500 contacts in the contacts index using the following code:

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$client = \Algolia\AlgoliaSearch\SearchClient::create('YourApplicationID', 'YourWriteAPIKey');
$index = $client->initIndex('contacts');
$batch = json_decode(file_get_contents('contacts.json'), true);
$index->saveObjects($batch, ['autoGenerateObjectIDIfNotExist' => true]);

Configure

You can customize settings to fine-tune the search behavior. For example, you can add a custom ranking by number of followers to further enhance the built-in relevance:

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$index->setSettings(['customRanking' => ['desc(followers)']]);

You can also configure the list of attributes you want to index by order of importance (most important first).

Algolia suggests results as you type, which means you’ll generally search by prefix. In this case, the order of attributes is crucial in deciding which hit is the best.

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$index->setSettings(
  [
    'searchableAttributes' => [
      'lastname',
      'firstname',
      'company',
      'email',
      'city',
      'address'
    ]
  ]
);

Once configured, you can search for contacts by attributes such as firstname, lastname, or company (even with typos):

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// Search for a first name
var_dump($index->search('jimmie'));

// Search for a first name with typo
var_dump($index->search('jimie'));

// Search for a company
var_dump($index->search('california paint'));

// Search for a first name and a company
var_dump($index->search('jimmie paint'));

Search UI

Use one of Algolia’s frontend libraries to build your search UI:

However, if you don’t want to use the libraries, you can build a custom UI:

  1. Design UI components with your preferred frontend system: a search box, results display, filters, and any other desired Algolia features
  2. Send search requests with the API client
  3. Parse the JSON response from the search request and display the results in your custom UI.
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