Power Searching with Google

The use of proper Google syntax will allow you to find the most accurate information in the shortest amount of time. Here are a list of questions that you may have never thought of asking yourself when searching for answers through Google.

How would you search for an exact word or phrase?

When searching for an exact word or phrase on Google, you should place quotation marks around it.

How would you search for something on a specific site?

If you are looking for results from a specific website, you may state the site operator within the search by using “site:” before it.

Here are a few examples provided by Google on how to do this:
[site:edu] or [site:.edu]
[Jefferson site:archives.gov] or [site:archives.gov jefferson].

How would you correctly search for a definition?

The best way to search for a definition on Google is by placing “define” before the word. This process will filter out any irrelevant information that may be associated with this word.

How would you search for a specific product available within a specific price range?

When searching for a product within a specific price range, Google suggests to enter the product name followed by the two amounts which should be joined with a string of dots.

Here is an example: iPhone case $10..$50

How would you search for a specific filetype?

In order to find specific filetypes, place “filetype:” and the desired extension after your search words. Make sure there are no spaces between the word “filetype”, the colon, or the extension.

Here is an example: architectural symbols filetype:pdf

You can also find a list of file types Google indexes in the following link: http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=35287 

How would you include or ignore words in your search?

You can ensure that words are included in search results by placing quotation marks around it.

Alternatively, you may use the minus sign to eliminate a specific word from showing up in your results. It is important to note that a space is needed before the minus sign but no space should be placed between the minus and the word you are wishing to exclude.

Here is an example: flooring -laminate

How would you find related pages?

In order to find related pages on Google, place the word “related:” before the site url.

How would you find a topic, searching all available synonyms of a word?

To find all available synonyms of a word while finding a topic, insert the “~” symbol before without any spaces.

Here’s an example: recipes ~cake toppings

How would you find the time in another country?

In order to find the time in another country, simply place the word “time” before the country’s name.

How would you find out how many Egyptian pounds you get for $20 Canadian dollars?

To use the built-in currency converter, search the first currency amount “in” the second currency amount.

Screen Shot of Google search result

Screen Shot of Google search result

To find more information on the matter, please visit http://www.powersearchingwithgoogle.com. Additional self-paced courses will become available on their website, so be sure to check back regularly to become an expert in power searching!


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