This was a question I sent to Wikia, not realising that Answers was a deprecated platform and they were no longer supporting it. (Although it was good of them to reply to tell me so.) I'll copy the whole thing, so if any of you guys have any ideas, that'd be great.
Hi, I was wondering if there may be a way for the Search bar on an Answers wiki, such as fable.answers.wikia.com, to be as prevalent and obvious as the Ask bar. Many people who ask questions here at Fable Answers are likely to find their question has already been asked if they take the time to use Search. But the Ask box is so obvious, the Search bar aeems to be overlooked.
Or, perhaps, would it be possible for the Ask bar to function as a Search bar in the first instance, and then give the option to ask the entered question if no results provide the answer? For example, say there exists an answer "How do I open the door in Brightwood", and someone enters in the Ask box "How do you open the Brightwood door". This may be the same question, but worded differently. I realise we can redirect the question if it is the same, but with dozens of questions coming in each day, it would be beneficial if the site was able to recognise common terms in existing answers asked in new questions, and present them to the asker, so that our editors can focus on answering questions which are actually new, and not spend time redirecting questions which already exist.
Since they are no longer actively changing it (Tim Quievryn said this was one of the "fatal flaws of the Answers wikis"), I doubt they'd have much of an issue with trying to improve it, as long as it doesn't violate ToU.
I have Tim's full reply if you're interested in seeing it.