How to Optimise Your Success Rate When Searching in our Online Shop

The search function in the PICARD online shop is based on the so-called “direct-hit search”. That has the huge advantage that only those product types are displayed for which you are really searching. You are thus not inundated by a mass of unfiltered search results. Conversely, however, this also means that article designations must be written out in full. If parts of the designation are missing, it may well be the case that no hits are shown, although we can offer alternatives with similar designs.

There is, however, a simple way of increasing the success rate when searching for certain articles, even when parts of the designation have been entered incompletely. How does that work? By using the asterisk (*)!

Mock-up Grafik vom Onlineshop, Mock-up graphic of the online shop

What is the purpose of the asterisk in the search function?

If certain manufacturer-specific designations, specifications or suffixes are not known, using the asterisk increases your search radius. This is because the * replaces an indeterminate number of variables. There are several options for the positions in the designation in which the asterisk can be placed. These are described in more detail below:

Option 1: Asterisk at the end of the designation – advanced search results

Are you searching for a certain type in the PICARD online shop, but no result is shown? This may mean that the article is temporarily sold out. Because the designation was not entered completely, the request falls through our “direct-hit filter”, meaning that no suitable alternatives can be shown. For example: When searching for the plummer block housing SNL510-608, only the designation SNL510 is entered. The rest of the designation, -608, is missing, meaning that no result is shown. However, if one were to add a * after the partial designation (SNL510*), the hit list is supplemented by plummer block housings with a similar design from various manufacturers.

Try this out straight away and search for the designations of the products you need most often, with and without an asterisk!

Screenshot aus dem Onlineshop, Screenshot from the online shop


Option 2: Asterisk in the middle of the designation – display of further designs

It is also possible to place the asterisk in the middle of the search term rather than at the end. By doing this, other designs of a product type are included in the hit list. In addition, some manufacturers use their own article designations – these are also shown when you place the asterisk in the middle, as this replaces an arbitrary number of characters.

For example: If you enter the incomplete self-explanatory designation KWD20 when searching for generation D, size 20 ball runner blocks from the brand Bosch Rexroth, this does not produce any hits in our online shop although we stock these types. A complete self-explanatory designation would be, for example, KWD-020-SNS-C1-N-1 (CS). If you now enter an asterisk between KWD and 20 (KWD*20), suitable ball runner blocks are now shown.


As Bosch Rexroth also uses a self-explanatory designation along with its R number and this was not entered in full during the first search run, the search did not yield any results. The asterisk in the second search run replaces the missing elements of the designation. This enables further product types to be found.


Screenshot aus dem Onlineshop, Screenshot from the online shop

Option 3: Asterisk at the start of the designation – avoiding manufacturer-specific prefixes / searching for certain features using the suffix

It is expedient to place the asterisk at the start of the designation if it is important to search for a specific version defined by the suffix. For example: By entering *VL0241, you will find bearings with current-insulating properties. These help to prevent electrical erosion within the bearing when it is used for applications involving the passage of current, as is the case in generators or industrial electric motors.

Furthermore, the prefixes of a special product type sometimes differ from manufacturer to manufacturer. Take for example the inner rings, which are called IR by INA and 1R by NTN. In this case, the * at the start of the designation results in more search results for inner rings when you use the designation *R100.

Screenshot aus dem Onlineshop, Screenshot from the online shop


Option 4: Several asterisks in a designation – combining product features

If it is OK for the search for a product type to encompass several different versions, it is also possible to enter more than one asterisk in the designation.

An ideal example is the search term *7005*UL. This can stand for various series of high-precision bearings. If your search is independent of the manufacturer and/or series (first asterisk) and may also include different product features such as contact angle, pretension or material of the rolling elements (second asterisk), this search query delivers results that are perfectly tailored to your needs.

Screenshot aus dem Onlineshop, Screenshot from the online shop

And if, in exceptional cases, the desired product cannot be found among the 55,000 products that make up our product range, our Procurement team will quickly and reliably help you to procure the desired article in our Europe-wide network at short notice and deliver it to your destination address by the fastest available means.