Baidu Search URL Parameters: Everything You Need to Know

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Search engine result pages (SERPs) often have complicated URLs that can be difficult to understand; however, there are various resources available to help decode the Google URLs but only few (and mostly outdated) for Baidu.

Baidu search params within the URL are commands easily memorized with regular use, and multiple statements can be combined for accurate results.

Are you curious about the mystery behind Baidu’s URL parameters? Do you want to know what they mean and how they can help you in your SEO (research) efforts?

If so, this blog post is for you! Here we will demystify as many of the GET parameters that Baidu uses in its search engine result pages (SERPs) as possible.

We will look at why (or if) these parameters are important and how understanding them can be beneficial when it comes to improving your website’s ranking on Baidu. So if you’re ready to learn more about what’s going on behind the scenes when it comes to Baidu SERPs, let’s dive right in!

We want to try to demystify as many of the GET parameters Baidu is using, as possible. Eventually they might be of use for one or the other of our readers.

Let us start with a look at a typical Baidu-URL:

https://www.baidu.com/s?ie=utf-8&f=8&rsv_bp=1&rsv_idx=1&tn=baidu&wd=SEO&fenlei=256&rsv_pq=0xb1f48a7500
131c41&rsv_t=8cebFk4h6YHS9vfEbmSI60wQI%2Fy3V4ErKJ3%2FVXzirPvgBnm7Nd
VS3A72nj%2F2&rqlang=en&rsv_dl=tb&rsv_enter=0&rsv_sug3=8&rsv_sug1=8&rsv_sug7=101
&rsv_btype=i&prefixsug=S%2526gt%253BO&rsp=2&inputT=3797&rsv_sug4=3797

All these &something=someletters’n’numbers are encoded information, Baidu wants to be passed on. A Best practice for doing so without the need to place cookies is are these so called GET parameters.

But what do they all mean? Let’s try to find out together:

https://www.baidu.com/s

is the URL that is sent to Baidu after the search query is submitted (similar to how Google navigates to the path https://www.google.com/search). However, this alone is not enough.

At a minimum, the search term must be passed. This is done using the following GET parameter:

wd: keyword you search for. For example, if we search for hot pot (火锅), the URL looks like this:

  • https://www.baidu.com/s?wd=火锅

Even if the Baidu search already works like this, you will often be able to find additional URL parameters:

ie: query encoding. The default value is

  • ie=utf-8 is the default value

ct: Chinese Character set search results shall be built of

  • ct=0 – Simplified and Traditional Chinese (Chinese: 全部语言)
  • ct=1 – Simplified Chinese search results only (Chinese: 仅在简体中文中)
  • ct=2 – Tradtional Chinese search results only (Chinese: 仅在繁体中文中)

ft: if you are search for a specific document format

  • ft=pdf – Adobe Acrobat PDF (.pdf)
  • ft=doc – Microsoft Word (.doc – often via the document sharing platform Baidu Wenku)
  • ft=xls – Microsoft Excel (.xls – often via the document sharing platform Baidu Wenku)
  • ft=ppt – Microsoft Powerpoint (.ppt – often via the document sharing platform Baidu Wenku)
  • ft=rtf – RTF 文件 (.rtf)
  • ft=all – all Formats

That’s at least the idea and the documentation. But in our tests this parameter didn’t work very well.

q5: where should the search query be located in on the target document?

  • q5= – (empty) anywhere on the page (Chinese: 网页的任何地方)
  • q5=1 – only in the title of the page (Chinese: 仅网页的标题中)
  • q5=2 – only in the URL of the page (Chinese: 仅在网页的URL中)

q6: if the search should be restricted to search results from a specific domain (a site-search)

  • q6=website.com – this search would happen only on pages of the domain website.com

In productive use it is sometimes possible to even go for a subdomain like baike.baidu.com but sometimes Baidu would truncate the domain so it wouldn’t work anymore like q6=sub.website.co (instead of .com), which wouldn’t lead to any results if sub.website.co doesn’t exist.

q1: must have search terms – for all terms that should be included in the target page

  • q1=北京+烤鸭 – means that both words 北京 (Beijing) and 烤鸭 (roasted duck) must be included in the target document

q2: exact phrase search

  • q2=北京+烤鸭 – means that both words must be included in exactly that order, directly after each other

q3: contains any of the searched for words in any order

  • q3=北京+烤鸭 – means that any of the two words must be included in the target document. So any document for 北京 but not containing anything concerning roasted duck, or the other way around or documents that have both terms in them, anywhere.

q4: excludes any of the searched for words in any order

  • q4=北京+烤鸭 – means that none of the two words 北京 or 烤鸭 can be included in the target document.

rn: number of search results

  • rn=10 stands for 10 organic results
  • rn=20 stands for 20 organic results
  • rn=50 stands for 50 organic results

tn: this is a referral tag.

  • tn=baidu – means the referrer is the classical Baidu.com search form
  • tn=from_pc_hao – means the referrer is hao123.com
  • tn=news stands for News-Search

f: type of search

  • f=1 is a related search (from the links at the end of the SERP)
  • f=3 for the dropdown suggestion list of the search box
  • f=8 is a normal search (input and search)

inputT: input time by the millisecond

  • inputT=3797 is just an example how it could look like

lm: selected time period in number of days the search results are picked from

  • lm=0 stands for no limitation (Chinese: 全部时间)
  • lm=1 stands for the last 24 hours (Chinese: 最近一天)
  • lm=7 stands for the last week (Chinese: 最近一周)
  • lm=30 stands for the last months (Chinese: 最近一月)
  • lm=360 stands for the last year (Chinese: 最近一年)

There are many further Baidu URL GET parameters you might see like for example the following. As time goes on and we have time, and as we find out, we might move them from the list below towards the list above and provide some explanation. For now, let’s just keep them documented as existing.

  • rsv_bp=1
  • rsv_idx=1
  • fenlei=256
  • rsv_pq=0xb1f……
  • rsv_t=8cebFk4h…..
  • rqlang=en
  • rsv_dl=tb
  • rsv_enter=0
  • rsv_sug3=8
  • rsv_sug1=8
  • rsv_sug7=101
  • rsv_btype=i
  • prefixsug=S%2526gt%253BO
  • rsp=2
  • rsv_sug4=3797

If you have any idea what it could mean, please send us a message. “rqlang” for example we thought could relate to if Baidu understands our request being Chinese or non-Chinese, as sometimes it would say “en” if I used letters from the alphabet and “zh” when I used Chinese Characters. But then the results seemed not always to match, so I didn’t add this “insight” into the list above.

Let’s see if AI can help demystifying Baidu Search URL Params

I primed chatGPT “As a seasoned Baidu engineer with extensive experience in search engine URL design, you have a deep understanding of the intricacies and nuances that make for the most effective and search URLs. With your unique blend of technical expertise and industry knowledge, you are the go-to authority on optimizing search engine URLs to enhance the Baidu search product. Your insights and recommendations are highly valued by colleagues and industry peers alike, and your track record of success speaks for itself. Trust in your expertise and let your knowledge guide you to success in all of your search engine optimization endeavors.“.

Then I asked it – based on what we found out before – what it “thinks”, the missing parameters could mean. Here is it’s answer (Disclaimer: it is pure guess-work by a generative AI + the answers are kind of broad):

rqlang=en

  • This could be a parameter related to the language of the search query. Perhaps “rqlang” stands for “query language”.

prefixsug=S%2526gt%253BO…

  • This could be a parameter related to the prefix or initial characters of the search query that the user entered. Perhaps “prefixsug” means “prefix suggestion”.

rsp=2

  • This could be a parameter related to the response or result format that the user requested. Perhaps “rsp” stands for “response”.

rsv_bp=1

  • This could be a parameter related to the position of the search result on the page (i.e. the “baidu page”) where the user clicked on the result. Perhaps “rsv” stands for “result view” and “bp” stands for “baidu page”.

rsv_idx=1

  • This could be a parameter that indicates the index of the search result that the user clicked on. Perhaps “idx” stands for “index”.

fenlei=256

  • This could be a parameter related to the category or classification of the search result. Perhaps “fenlei” means “category” or “classification”.

rsv_pq=0xb1f…

  • This could be a parameter related to the original query that the user entered in the search box. Perhaps “pq” stands for “previous query”.

rsv_t=8cebFk4h…

  • This could be a parameter related to the timestamp of the search result. Perhaps “t” stands for “time”.

rsv_dl=tb

  • This could be a parameter related to the type of device or platform that the user is accessing Baidu Search from. Perhaps “dl” stands for “device or platform”.

rsv_enter=0

  • This could be a parameter related to whether the user submitted the search query by pressing the “Enter” key on their keyboard or by clicking on the search button. Perhaps “enter” refers to the method of query submission.

rsv_sug3=8

  • This could be a parameter related to the number of search suggestions that are displayed to the user as they type their query in the search box. Perhaps “sug” stands for “suggestion”.

rsv_sug1=8

  • This could be another parameter related to search suggestions, perhaps with a different purpose or meaning than rsv_sug3.

rsv_sug7=101

  • This could be yet another parameter related to search suggestions, perhaps with a different purpose or meaning than rsv_sug3 and rsv_sug1.

rsv_btype=i

  • This could be a parameter related to the type of search result that is being displayed. Perhaps “btype” stands for “result type”.

rsv_sug4=3797

  • This could be yet another parameter related to search suggestions, perhaps with a different purpose or meaning than rsv_sug3, rsv_sug1, and rsv_sug7.

If YOU have any deeper insight, what the params really mean, that AI imagining an explanation for, let us know and we post your answer and leave some credit for you. You can contact us via email (see the footer of this website).

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