There are by default four search scopes in SharePoint 2013:
- This Site (the default)
- People (searches personal sites and skills)
For search results of “This Site”, the search results page is actually in the site collection itself. For all the other scopes, the search results page is in the Enterprise Search site collection that is pointed to in your farm settings. This is important to note if you want to customize search results – based on this distinction you may have multiple spots to customize at the Enterprise level and within each site collection.
You can create a new site collection to represent your Enterprise Search easily – just go to New Site Collection in the farm management and choose an Enterprise Search Center as your template:
Once your site collection is created, you can point your enterprise search results to this new collection within the farm settings (search –> search settings):
Note that it takes some time for these settings to take effect – the dialogue box says 30 minutes but I found in my environment it took about 10 minutes.