Guides / Managing results / Refine results / Sorting results

Search in a Replica Index

Using replicas with different sorting strategies allows you to provide a way for users to change the sorting on the front end. For example, imagine you have an e-commerce website for which you sort the products, by default, from cheapest to most expensive. You might want to provide a dropdown or toggle switch to let users sort from most expensive to cheapest.

Because you must have one replica index per sorting strategy, you need to change the index Algolia searches into when the user changes the sorting order.

Switching Index

Before you implement the search, you need to have replicas for each sorting strategy you want to provide. See our how-to guide on creating replicas if you haven’t set up replicas yet.

Once you have replicas set up, you need to initialize all indices you want to search into (primary and replicas), and switch to the right index based on which sorting strategy the user has selected.

Using InstantSearch for web? You might want to use our built-in sortBy widget instead.

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// 1. Change the sort dynamically based on the UI events
$sortByPrice = false;

// 2. Get the index name based on sortByPrice
$indexName = $sortByPrice ? 'products_price_desc' : 'products';

// 3. Search on dynamic index name (primary or replica)
$client->initIndex($indexName)->search('phone');

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