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Twitter adds keyword search to Direct Messages

Twitter announced that is giving users a long-requested feature – the ability to search your direct message (DM) inbox by keyword.

The search feature is rolling out now to all Twitter users (web and app). Sadly, I don’t have it yet, but I know many people already have access to it.

How Twitter DM keyword search works. Just as you’d expect of any platform in 2022. Visit your inbox, click on the search bar, and start typing in your keywords. 

Until now, you could only search DMs for people and groups. Now you’ll see a third option, Messages. Twitter will highlight any messages that contain that keyword, including conversations where the keyword is used multiple times.

Here’s the tweet where Twitter Support showed off via a GIF what it looks like if you search for “restaurant”:

Here’s another tweet where Twitter showed off the results on a search for “rock”.

One limitation, as noted by the Verge: it appears as though DM search didn’t return any results for conversations older than 2020. So if you were hoping for a search function that went through your entire history, you’re out of luck unless Twitter improves this. 

Why we care. This is good news for brands that use Twiter for customer service. Searching for a user’s name has limited value, especially if you’re dealing with many customers and conversations. I’m often bad with names, but pretty good at thinking in terms of keywords to find old conversations on places like Slack. It could also be a source of ideas for adding new or additional FAQ content for your website. Now you can easily see what support questions your customers have asked or what issues they frequently have run into, simply by doing keyword searches. 


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About The Author

Danny Goodwin is Senior Editor of Search Engine Land. In addition to writing daily about SEO, PPC, and more for Search Engine Land, Goodwin also manages Search Engine Land’s roster of subject-matter experts. He also helps program our conference series, SMX – Search Marketing Expo. Prior to joining Search Engine Land, Goodwin was Executive Editor at Search Engine Journal, where he led editorial initiatives for the brand. He also was an editor at Search Engine Watch. He has spoken at many major search conferences and virtual events, and has been sourced for his expertise by a wide range of publications and podcasts.

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