Filtering vs. Searching

This article is about the difference between filtering cards on a board and searching for cards.

Trello for Web gives you the ability to search for cards across all boards, and filter single boards to focus on specific labels, members assigned to cards, due dates and keywords.

If you’re using Trello via the iOS or Android apps, tapping the magnifying glass will filter whatever board page you’re on. To search for cards across all boards on Android, tap the magnifying glass while on the homepage. Currently, there is no way to search all boards at once when using Trello’s iOS app.

Which is right for me?

Here are the same cards, found via filtering and searching:

Filtering will show cards on their original boards and lists. Searching will bring up a new window with the results.

Both filtering and searching will let you find cards assigned to particular members, labels, or boards.

Only searching will search for terms across several boards, or card descriptions.

Filtering will let you search for parts of words in the title of a card– “fin” and “2009” and even “_” will bring up “finances_2009”.

Both options have keyboard shortcuts. Press ‘f’ to filter a board, or ‘/’ to focus the search box. Press ‘q’ to filter for cards assigned to you, and ‘x’ to clear a filter.

Filtering works on boards you’re not a member of (Try it with the Trello Development Board!)

Searching has more options than filtering– using special operators, you can search for cards based on when they were created, archived cards, by checklist or comments, or on a particular list.

Filtering will filter card titles by multiple keywords– that is, if you filter for “May 2009 Financial Planning”, you’ll get cards that contain anyof the words “May”, “2009”, “Financial”, or “Planning”.

Searching is better when it comes to finding specific cards– it will only find cards with all of the keywords listed. The following image shows what happens if you enter “May 2009 Financial Planning” into filtering vs. search:

Both filtering and searching are great tools for managing Trello, so try them both out! With experience you’ll know which is the right tool for each situation.