Google search is the most used search engine in the world. You probably use it multiple times a week, if not every day. Google can give us the answers to nearly anything we need to know, but it can be difficult to know exactly what to search to get the best results. Here are 10 tricks that will help you google more efficiently and effectively.
10. Use Quotes
If you are trying to find the source that a specific quote is from, you can easily do it through google. Type the quote directly into the search engine, but you must include the quotation marks. Google uses the words you enter into a search to scan entire documents. Searching something without quotation marks will tell google to look for anything with those words, but not necessarily in that order. If you use quotes, you find webpages that have those exact words in that order.
Have you ever wanted to find the title of a song, but you only know a few of the lyrics? Search the lyrics that you know with quotation marks around it, and the song will likely show up in the results. There is so much information out there. Quotes can help locate specific information that may have gotten buried in other documents.
9. Use hyphens
Words can often have more than one meaning. For example, if you are searching the word Mustang, you will get results for horses and cars. Hyphens can be used in situations like this to make your search more specific. This tells the search engine to exclude the word after the hyphen. It can be wildly helpful when finding information about something without getting information about something else. Search “mustang-cars” to filter out cars from the results. If you are searching for a job opportunity in your area and do not want to see results from glassdoor, you should search “jobs in *your city* -glassdoor”.
8. Define a Word
There is no need to go out and buy a dictionary when you have google available to you. Definition searches are very common and super easy. You can type a word by itself, and the definition will be the first thing that pops up. Not only will you get the definition, but you can check the spelling and make sure you’re using the word correctly. If you ever are playing a word game such as scrabble or words with friends, google can help you win by checking if a word exists or not.
7. Use an Asterisk Instead of a Word
People use Google usually because they are unsure of something. Sometimes, your mind goes blank and you can’t think of a word in the phrase you are searching. Asterisks can be put in place of a word, and Google Search will try to figure out what you mean. This is ideal when you search for song lyrics but can not think of that one part.
6. Find Similar Sites
This tip is a unique one that not many people know about. It can be extremely useful if you have a favorite website but would like to expand your horizons and find a similar one. This can be especially useful when searching for a clothing store that is similar to your favorite one. You will get many more similar clothing options, while still keeping your signature style. Below is how to do this.
If you search that above, you’ll find links to online stores similar to Nordstrom. This tool is powerful and can lead to you finding your new favorite site.
5. Solve Math Problems
Who needs a calculator when you have Google search? Some of us aren’t the best at solving math problems in our head, and Google is here to help. Google search can not solve every problem because math can get very complicated and challenging. You can ask basic questions and some more difficult ones.
Here are a couple of examples of what you can search:
- 9 * 4 + 8
- Quadratic formula
If you search the first one, it will give you the answer automatically and a calculator will appear on the screen where you can type other equations.
4. Smart Word Choice
This is a significant one. When people use Google to search the web, they often search using the same language that they would use for speaking. It would be best if you remembered that websites do not use the same words that we generally use when speaking. The language used on websites is usually much more formal and professional sounding.
Here is an example:
- “My back hurts” could be replaced by “back pain relief.”
Your results will be more reliable if you use language that you would find on a professional website. You should know Google takes what you search for and matches it with keywords in online content. That being said, if you add unnecessary words into your search, Google will have a harder time finding what you are looking for. Try to keep it simple and use important words only. When you search for too many words, it may limit your results. Here are some examples of how you can “de-clutter” your search:
- Don’t use: Where can I find a Mexican restaurant that delivers to my house.
- Instead, try: Mexican restaurants nearby.
3. Search for Vacations
If you are interested in looking at flights to go to an amazing new destination, you can easily use Google to search for flights from all different airlines. For example, search “San Diego to Hawaii”.After you book a flight, you will probably need to find a place to stay. For hotels, search “Hawaii hotels” and for events “Hawaii events”.
Google translate can be extremely useful in certain situations. You can type a word that you would like to know directly into the search bar and just add “in English” afterward. It doesn’t have to be just one word. You can translate a whole sentence or even a paragraph for that matter. If you are in a different country and find yourself unable to understand something, this is the most efficient way to solve that problem.
1. Set a Timer
Sometimes you may find yourself in the kitchen with your laptop or phone open and need to set a timer. Or, you may be sitting on the couch and realize that you forgot to set a timer for your food. Don’t worry. Google search has got your back. This is a handy tool that not many people know about. All you do is search to set a timer for a specific amount of time, and the search engine will automatically set it.