How to add a custom action to the hover panel in SharePoint Server 2013

This is a blog post in the series "How to change how search results are displayed". To demonstrate how you can customize your search results, I'll use examples from an internal Microsoft Search Center.

For an overview of the blog posts in this series, go to How to change how search results are displayed.

In the previous blog post, I showed you how to display values from custom managed properties in the hover panel. In this blog post we’ll learn:


What is a hover panel action?

Before I show you how to add a custom action to a hover panel, I want to make sure that you know what an action is.

At the bottom of the hover panel there are some links that are called actions. When you choose one of these, something will happen. For example, in my Search Center, when I choose “SEND”…

SEND action

… an email with a link to the list item will open.

New mail

To enable your visitors to do something with the search results, without having to leave the search results page, you can add a custom action.

In my Search Center scenario, I wanted to add a custom action that opens the published article. For example, for the search result “Customize search result types in SharePoint 2013”, I wanted to add an action that opens this link:


How to add an action to the hover panel

In our lists, whenever an article is published, the URL to the published article is added to the list item. The screenshot below shows how the URL to the article “Customize search result types in SharePoint 2013” is maintained in the site column “Content Release URL”.

List item with site column Content Release URL

Because this URL is maintained in the list, I can add a custom action to the hover panel that will open this link.

In my previous post I showed you how the hover panel actions are rendered by the Item_Common_HoverPanel_Actions display template. So, to add a custom action, you have to edit this file.

However, similar to what we did when we added a custom property to the hover panel, you have to add the managed property that you want to use in your custom action to the item display template.

Confused? Well, trust me, this is not easy. It took me a while before understanding how things were connected, so let’s go through it step-by-step.

To add a custom action to the hover panel, here’s what you should do:

  1. Find the managed property name of the site column that you want to use. I showed you how to do this in a previous blog.

  2. In your mapped network drive, open an item display template. In the item display template, in the ManagedPropertyMapping tag, use the following syntax to add the custom managed property:
    '<Current item property name>':<Managed property name>'

    In my scenario, I added the custom property that I wanted to use to the TechNet content display template.

Managed property added to display template

  1. NOTE: You do not need to do this step if you are using SharePoint Online.
    Go to Site settings --> Search Result Types. Notice that a Property Sync alert is displayed.

Property Sync alert

This alert is displayed because we have added a new managed property to an item display template (what we did in step 2). To update the result types with the newly added managed properties, choose Update.

Update managed properties from display templates

IMPORTANT! If you don't do the update, the newly added managed properties will not display in your hover panel.

  1. Open the Item_Common_HoverPanel_Actions display template. See how the default actions are created, and use JavaScript and HTML to add your custom action.

    In my internal scenario, I looked at how the OPEN action ( _#= editHmtl =#_ ) is created. Based on that, I created a new action: _#= viewHtml =#_. The following screenshot shows what I did.

 Custom action added to display template

By doing a new search and hovering over a search result, I saw that my new custom action was displayed. Nice!

New custom action displayed

So now that you know how to change the way your search results are displayed, I have just one more thing that I want to show you: How you can change the text that is displayed in the Search Box Web Part.

Next blog post in this series
How to change the text that is displayed in the Search Box Web Part