At the beginning of September I wrote an article about the Search Reloaded plugin, which sorts the WordPress search results by relevance rather than date. In addition to Search Reloaded, I also use the Search Excerpt plugin to enhance the search results on this site.
Generally search results pages use WordPress excerpts. Excerpts contain the first couple of sentences of a post. The problem with this as related to search is that the first couple of sentences may have nothing to do with the search term.