what3words Autosuggest Plugin


This plugin allows you to easily add searching for, capturing, and validating a what3words address to a form on your WordPress powered site.

Returning suggestions based on full or partial 3 word addresses, the AutoSuggest feature helps users with the following types of input error:
– typing errors
– spelling errors
– misremembered words (e.g. singular vs. plural) or words in the wrong order

We recommend using the plugin when you want to capture a precise location from a user. This could be the exact location of your customer’s front door, for example, for delivering their purchase.


Enabling the plugin in a post or page

To enable the plugin on a post or page, simply add a text input field, contained inside a form, and add the field’s id to the plugin’s Input Selector(s) configuration option as described below.

what3words API settings

A what3words API key is required to use this plugin as it authenticates and interacts with the what3words API.
If you don’t have a what3words API key yet, you can quickly and easily sign-up and register for one.

General Settings

  • Input Selectors (WordPress only) – the input fields that the plugin is configured to search for 3 word addresses, specified as a list of css selectors. Multiple fields can be supplies using commas, e.g. “.class, #id”.

  • Input Placeholder Text – an optional placeholder to be displayed in the input fields that are configured in the Input Selector(s) option. We recommend providing an example what3words address here with “e.g.” to illustrate how a what3words address should be entered, for example, “e.g. index.home.raft”.

WooCommerce Support

The plugin also allows you to automatically add a 3 word address validation field to a WooCommerce checkout form and save the 3 word address against the customer’s order details. By enabling WooCommerce checkout integration, the #shipping_w3w and #billing_w3w selectors will be automatically added to the list of Input Selector(s).

Filter Support And Usage

what3words AutoSuggest plugin supports a single filter to change the default set of installation settings and options at plugin activation time.


Applied to the default set of plugin settings and options. Note that this filter is called once, upon plugin activation, when there are no what3words AutoSuggest plugin settings/options existing in the database.

Example: Add the date and time that the plugin was first activated

add_filter ('what3wordssearchbox_default_settings', 'add_activation_timestamp');

function add_activation_timestamp ($options) {
    // options = array (option name => option value)
    $options['plugin_activation_timestamp'] = date (DATE_ATOM);

    return $options;


  • The plugin showing an empty searchbox with placeholder text
  • The plugin showing autocompletions for a partially entered address
  • The plugin showing a valid what3words address
  • The admin screen showing available settings


  1. You can install what3words AutoSuggest plugin automatically from the WordPress admin panel. From the Dashboard, navigate to Plugins / Add New and search for “what3words” and click on the “Install Now” button.
  2. Or you can install what3words AutoSuggest plugin manually. Download the plugin Zip archive and uncompress it. Copy or upload the 3-word-address-validation-field folder to the wp-content/plugins folder on your web server.
  3. Activate the plugin. From the Dashboard, navigate to Plugins and click on the “Activate” link under the entry for What3words Searchbox.
  4. Customise and configure the plugin; from the Dashboard, navigate to the Settings / what3words AutoSuggest plugin page or click on the “Settings” link from the Plugins page on the Dashboard.
  5. Click on the “Save what3words AutoSuggest plugin Settings” button to preserve your chosen settings and options.


Is there a web site for this plugin?

Absolutely. Go to the what3words AutoSuggest plugin home page for the latest information. There’s also the official WordPress plugin repository page and the source for the plugin is on GitHub as well.

what3words AutoSuggest plugin isn’t available in my language; can I submit a translation?

WordPress and this plugin use the Gnu gettext tools to support internationalisation. The source file containing each string that needs to be translated ships with the plugin in what3words-searchbox/lang/src/what3words-searchbox.po. See the I18n for WordPress Developers page for more information or get in touch for help.

I have a question that’s not answered here; what do I do?

Have a read of the what3words Knowledge Base, which contains many more frequently asked questions and their answers.


This plugin may cause catastrophic failure of your website, especially where images and templates are concerned. Contacting the company themselves has revealed they are fully aware of significant incompatibility issues with WordPress, other established main stream plugins and several common and widely used Themes. It has been recommended to the company and to WordPress that this plugin be withdrawn immediately until the developer has corrected these issues.


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The current version is 3.0.8 (2020.12.11)


  • Released 2020.12.11
  • Improved interoperability, errors in 3rd party scripts will be less likely to prevent the plugin operating.
  • Bumped to latest WordPress release, 5.6


  • Released 2020.06.17
  • Addresses an error that prevented the plugin loading on Internet Explorer.
  • Minor styling improvements.


  • Released 2020.06.02
  • Further improvements to match theme styling
  • Clarified the purpose of the Input Selector(s) field
  • Updated readme


  • Released 2020.06.01
  • Apply missing font-size property.


  • Released 2020.06.01
  • Hotfix missing font-size property.


  • Released 2020.06.01
  • Plugin tweaked to take up less vertical height on themes with slimmer text inputs.


  • Released 2020.06.01
  • The plugin now inherits styles from the current wordpress theme for more seamless integration.
  • The following css properties are automatically applied to the upgraded input: background-color, border, border-radius, color, font, height.


  • Released 2020.05.27
  • Fixes an issue where country clipping would not work when shipping and billing addresses were in different countries.
  • Updated screenshots


  • Released 2020.05.26
  • Updated the plugin to use new web component and V3 of the what3words API. Note that this release simplifies the plugin setup and removes some settings.
  • Updated links to what3words documentation and developer site
  • Settings available are now:
  • API key
  • CSS selector to specify which inputs should be upgraded to the auto suggest component
  • Placeholder text shown on inputs
  • Turn on/off the WooCommerce integration, to automatically add what3words address fields to your checkout forms


  • Released 2019.01.16
  • Added new function to allow a country field to be specified for country clipping


  • Released 2018.04.05
  • bug fixes


  • Released 2018.03.16
  • bug fixes


  • Released 2018.01.09
  • bug fixes


  • Released 2018.01.08
  • Reworked and redesigned plugin code base


  • uses what3words autosuggest jQuery plugin 1.2.0


  • General fixes


  • Initial release