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What is Search Kit?

Search Kit is new functionality which started as a new search interface to provide a more intuitive and powerful search than older CiviCRM search tools and in later versions of CiviCRM opens up new roads to manage your data in CiviCRM.

Searches can be saved, have any number of unique displays on their own or connected to the dashboard or contact screen. Searches can have exposed filters for easy filtering and even be connected to a Smart Group. And you can use Search Kit for your own entities and with an additional extension even create your own entities. So although Search Kit is part of the Searching and Reporting section of this Guide it might some day end up with a Guide of its own as the possibilities evolve.

It ships as an extension which you can enable on the Extensions screen from 5.29 onwards. Once enabled it can be found under the menu Search > Search Kit.


Search Kit ships as an extension as part of our strategy of putting significant functionality leaps into extensions rather than overhauling existing code. This allows us to demarcate rapidly evolving code and to keep long-standing code more stable. People can opt into the extension or not. However, it is maintained as part of core against the specific release it ships with (as it is closely tied to API v4 functionality).

Search Kit components

There are always 2 and potentially 3 components to Search Kit: search screen, displays and forms. Depending on what you are doing you may not use all 3.

  1. The Search screen (or Compose Search) This is where the search criteria (what you are searching for so for example Events and Participants) and available fields are configured.
  2. Displays Displays is where you decide and define how you are going to present your search results. One search defined in the Compose Search section can have more displays presenting the results in a different way. Search displays currently available are table views, list views, grid views, or Smart Groups.
  3. Forms Forms (only in the screen if you have enabled the Form Builder extension that is shipped with CiviCRM core) allow you to create a form to present your search results on.

How to create searches and displays

The best way to find out how to create searches and displays and what options are available is by reading the examples provided in this chapter.