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When looking for information on nearly anything and everything, the first place the majority of people turn to is Google. The thing is, there are so many results when we input a Google search that it can sometimes be a challenge to find what exactly you’re looking for. Luckily, there are a number of tips and tricks you can employ to make finding what you need far easier. Here are seven:
Oftentimes, we are looking for an article, words, page, or even image from one site. If you simply search for it on Google, you may find the site right away, but you will also see results from other sites. To narrow down the results a little, try using the search operator site:.
When using site: followed by a web address in the search bar (without a space), Google shows results for that site at the top of the results list. So, if you are looking for an article that has the keywords: ‘cloud technology’ on CNN, you can enter: site:cnn.com cloud technology.
If you are looking for a specific webpage, but don’t know the site it is on, you can use the operator: intitle: followed by keywords. This tells Search to look for webpages that contain the keywords in the title.
For example, if you are looking for a webpage that has the title: five cloud tips, you can search for it by entering: intitle: five cloud tips. Note, be sure to add a space between the operator and the keywords/titles.
Using an OR operator between two keywords tells Search to show results for both of the keywords at the same time. This can be useful for when you are looking to quickly compare two different ideas or topics.
The key to making this operator work is to make sure that OR (in capital letters) is between the two terms you are looking for, and separated by a space on both sides.
With many Google searches you will often see results for local businesses with a presence on Google first, or results related to your local area. While these can be useful, when you are looking for non-local results, it can take time to sort through these findings.
If you see that there are a number of results with keywords or terms that you are not interested in, then put a – (minus) in front of the term (without a space) e.g., -term, and Search will not show results containing that word.
One of the key components of successful SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is link building – the concept of increasing links to and from your site. With Search’s various updates, Google is constantly changing the way sites are ranked and displayed in results. Businesses with websites need to ensure that the links they are using to direct to other content, or to bring people into their site are legitimate.
One quick way to see who links to your site is to use the Search operator: link:site.com. Simply enter link:yoursite.com, and Google will display results for all other sites and content that contain links to your site.
Looking for something where you know the first and last part of say the name, title, sentence, etc? You can use the Search operator * to help. The * (asterix) functions as what is called a wildcard, or unknown, operator. When used, it tells Search that you don’t know the words that are missing, and that you want Search to try and fill in the results.
The way Search works is that when a set of keywords are entered with spaces, Search will return results that contain the words either separately or together in any order. If you know exactly what you are looking for, you can add double quotes (“) around the terms.
By using double quotes, Google will show results that only contain those exact words, in that order. While this is useful, longer sentences in quotes will return fewer results, so if you aren’t finding what you are looking for, try reducing the number of words inside the quotes.
If you are looking to learn more about Google Search, contact us today to see how we can help.
Published on 9th July 2014 by Jeanne DeWitt.