How to conduct smart search in Google?
Start using smart search if you want better and relevant search results in Google
There are plenty of methods that we can use to conduct smart searches in Google. You will be surprised to know how you can target your search with different methods. These search methods save a lot of your time and you can conduct your research etc. in much more efficient manner. The results shown by using targeted search are much more relevant and expected.
General result v/s use of “+” sign Google searches
Plus sign is a firm indicator to Google that the word in the search bar that has “+” sign with it is definitely required in all the search results, other words as they rank in the results.
Let’s see an example: Search in Google “effective use of time” There are nearly 1,900,000,000 results.
Now search “effective use of time +managers” Now there are only 30,000 results!
What happened! How come the results are 50,000 times less and to the point?
Google showed the results that only has “managers” word in the “effective use of time” phrase that we searched.
Smart use of ‘+”! Right?
General result v/s use of “-” sign in Google searches
Same way we use “+” sign, we can actually use “-” sign (negative or minus) to tell Google that DON’T include the word with the minus sign in your search results.
Simply type your name and add – sign with your last name. You will see that all the results now have first name as yours but last name all others BUT yours.
Here is the example: Type “vijay -sharma” in Google and see all results have some other last name than Sharma.
General results v/s file type search in Google
Here is very simple example. Imagine you are searching the book, “Thinking into results”.
If you only type the name of the book, “Thinking into results” you get nearly 1,250,000,000 results.
Now if you type name of the book and add file type with it exactly as “thinking into results filetype:pdf”, you will only get pdf file types and the number of results narrow down to 210,000,000. You see 10 times less search results with target file type.
You can do same with word file, power point file or excel file or mp4 file or any other file type extension.
Searching email address in Google search
This one is easy. You can do this search in two ways.
- Type the name of the person in quotes and after name, add +email
- If there are no results type the name of the person without quotes and after name, add +email
You will get only people with the name and results which at least have email address or word on the related pages.
Searching exact phrase or sentence in Google
We can command Google search engine to exactly search the way we like. It can be an exact sentence in terms of order of words, spelling of words and nothing else.
How do we do that?
Use quotation marks.
Here is the example. Type “my life has evolved” in Google without quotes. You get 162,000,000 results. Now type same with the quotes. The number of results now is 262,000 only. Nearly 800 times lesser results!
Using quotation marks tells Google to search exact words, in exact order with exact spelling. Nothing else.
Where else can you use it?
Search for books, jobs, writers, companies, freights etc.
Using Google to search anything that we remember in parts
This is also a useful and smart search methodology. Let’s say that we trying to search a book. The name of the book is “21 irrefutable laws of leadership.”
But we have forgotten the word irrefutable!
How do we do it? We use “*” in place of the forgotten word.
So, we type in Google as “21 * laws of leadership” in quotes. You will see that the most of the results are from the John Maxwell’s book that I am searching about!
Searches in specific sites through Google search
You can advice Google that you are searching for a word, only on a particular website. Yes that’s it. You don’t want millions of results. Just let me know about the word on one site I am interested in?
Type it like this; site:sitename.com word
Example; site:marvelwebsites.com SEO. In this example, you will get all the pages of marvelwebsites.com that has SEO word on them.
Nice! Use it to find jobs in your dream company!
Finding related sites on Google
This search method helps in finding the related business websites. Let’s say you don’t want to buy anything from Ebay but you don’t know any related websites that sell at the same magnitude.
Type, related:ebay.com and you will get the results right away. Limited and to the point.
Finding number of indexed pages for a website
Google confuses sometimes. If you are using Google Search Console, you will know that there are lots of URL’s that Google refer to. You are wondering you only made 25 pages of your website but there are over 100 indexed or crawled.
If you want to to know exact number of pages indexed in your website by Google, just type; site:nameofsite.com and you will see results only from your website.
Conducting time sensitive searches in Google
Let’s say you want to find out something indexed possibly last year, nothing before that. Do you know Google has an option to provide time range to your searches.
Yes it does!
There are eight tabs just below the Google search bar. (As per below picture)
The last tab “Tools” will give you that option. Explore tools and you will see the time range. Get specific results and save your time.
Search older newspapers in Google search
Do you know Google has archive of older newspapers going back to year 1885 or so. Actually I saw one as old dated as Oct 17 1854. It is from “The Age” publication. The Age has 32807 issues in Google dating back to 1854.
WOW! It is 166 years old as I write today on Dec 30 2019! No teen till 2113 now! 94 years from now! Enjoy that you are here!
Search the 150+ year older news articles at Google News Archive
Searching for the pages that link to a particular website
Google is of enormous help when you want to find out that how many pages are linking to a particular website or a page.
To find out use command: link:thewebsitename.com
If we use our website as example: link:marvelwebsites.com, we get 2530 results!
Define and Time Commands in Google Search
Don’t know the meaning of a word?
It is easy with Google!
Just use: define:word. Replace word with the actual word. Example, define:encyclopedia and you will see the definition of the word encyclopedia
Same way if you are unsure of time in a particular part of a country, just type. time:name of the city. Example; time:paris and google will tell you the time right away.
Track Your Package
Did you know that if you have Fedex or UPS tracking number (Possibly other companies tracking number too) , you can type it directly in Google and track your package! Now you don’t need to go on a specific website unless there is a dispute. Convenient!
Last but not least; Google has multiple tabs on the top such as All, Images, Video, Tools etc. Explore all these tabs to learn new search techniques.
Hope you enjoyed these smart search tips that can help save your Googling time!