We love making online searches. According to the world’s most popular search engine, Google, we make over 40,000 search queries every single second. This means that around the world people search for over 3.5 billion things every day !
Now, Google is rather good at giving you accurate results in milliseconds. Despite our love for searching things online, the search engine is able to provide us with accurate information without it taking forever. Nonetheless, you might sometimes find yourself browsing the results and thinking you wish it were all just a bit more specific and better. If even Google can occasionally frustrate you, don’t worry; there is a solution. Indeed, you can kick up your searching game and use a few simple tricks to find more specific and better results in less time.
Here are 10 Google search tips and tricks to help you make the most of the search engine.
1. Exclude Terms
Sometimes we are looking for things that might bring about tons of results that are relevant to what we searched but not what we wanted. You might, for instance, search for mascarpone. But instead of getting plenty of recipes for the treat, you might want to find opportunities to buy the desert. To do this, you can exclude the words by using the minus symbol. So, you would type ‘mascarpone -recipes’.
In second search result you won’t find the word ‘recipes’ anywhere.
2. Search Only Files(mp3 or PDF etc)
If you are searching for a PDF file about Bill Gates and do not want Google to include every other things in search result than search like this – Filetype:PDF Bill Gates and Google won’t include anything in search results other than just PDF files.
3. Exact Phrase
Sometimes you are looking for specific results and not suggestions or closely related things. If this is the case, use exact phrases by adding quote marks around the phrase or name you are looking for.
So, if you want to find ‘Wellington boots’ and only results with these two in that particular order, search for “Wellington boots”. If you don’t add the quote marks, Google will list results for both Wellington and boots.
You can see every Google search result is containing the phrase ‘wellington boots’.
4. Utilize the Asterisk
You might not realize it but the asterisk can be a rather powerful tool in Google. It essentially works like a wildcard on Google – you can use in place of a missing word or to search for different words that starts the same.
So, if you don’t know the full phrase you are looking for – such as a song line – you can just write ‘tell your* to* again’ on the search engine and you’ll get results.
You can see in the image that wherever we used * have been filled with a word/phrase.
5. Look for Related Sites
You might want to find related sites and this can be done by using Google. If you love shopping for makeup with Look Fantastic, you can find other similar sites. Just write ‘related:lookfantastic.com’ on the search engine and you’ll find a selection of similar sites.
Finding similar sites can be helpful when you are looking to verify a news story or you need more references for your work. It’s also great for fun – as the example shows, you can ensure you never run out of makeup or that you get to read all the best fashion blogs with the help of related site search.
6. Either OR
The default search in Google finds results using all the words in your query individually. For an example if you are searching ‘Ram Shayam’ then you are searching ‘Ram and Shayam’ and Google will find the pages that contain both the words Ram and Shayam. But adding the term ‘or’ to your search, you can find results with one or the other term – making the search faster and wider. For an instance, Searching ‘Ram OR Shayam‘ on Google will include the results that mention the word Ram alone as well as the pages that mention Shayam alone.
7. Searching Between Values
When you are dealing with years and numbers, you might want to search between them. If you want to know the presidents of the US between the years 1930 and 1970, you just need to add two stops(..)between the years.
Of course, your value could essentially be anything. You could solve a maths questions by looking for the right numerical code or value. If you’ve ever wondered what Fibonacci numbers are then these can help you search for the different values in the famous series.
8. Search Within a Site
Sometimes you might not find something from a specific site, even if you use their internal search engine. Luckily, you can check Google and make your experience more fun. If you are looking for a specific retailer on the voucher site groupon.com, you don’t need to find the saving directly on the site. You can simply write on Google ‘site:groupon Boots’. Now, you can instantly find the vouchers you are looking for.
9.Find a Word in the Body, Title or URL of a Page
You don’t need to just search for terms within a website. You can narrow your search further and look for the term in the body of a text, the title of a site or even the specific URL. For each occasion, you need to use the following search terms:
- ‘inurl: happy life’ (search pages that have atleast one of the word (happy or life) in the URL)
- ‘intext: happy life’
- ‘intitle: happy life’
- ‘allinurl: happy life’ (search pages that have both the words happy and life in the URL)
10. Combine Any of the Above Tricks
Finally, you don’t need to use the above tips and tricks in isolation. You can, essentially, put all of them together if you want. For instance, you might want to find a specific thing from a specific website, yet you don’t want another related term to appear in the search. If you’d like to find out mascarpone things on the BBC without the recipes, you could search for ‘site:bbc.co.uk mascarpone -recipes’.
So, use the above tricks and combine them as you wish – you’ll soon notice your searching game has improved and you’ll start making faster and better findings on Google.