Google Advanced Search
Some of us rely heavily on research and using the internet to work our way around problems and find solutions to our queries. Most search engines will provide you basic tools in this regard. However sometimes it’s just not enough to satisfy the need of the user and you end up frustrated with a vast database of knowledge and no practical way of finding the results you’re looking for.
Google offers some very neat tools in enhancing your internet browsing experience and if you learn how to use them, navigation becomes much easier and more precise. The Advanced Google Search features are diverse and somewhat complicated for basic users so you might want to pay close attention and take some notes.
If you’re looking for a specific phrase and want to exclude any other results that are similar to what you are searching for you have to use quotation marks for your search. Here’s an example:
In this case we used “penguins in the arctic tundra” and it returned only one result that includes the exact use of the phrase within the quotation marks.
Let’s assume that you want to look up information about “Photoshop brushes” but want to exclude results that contain “free” to help you find products you need to pay for.
In this case our query will be: Photoshop brushes —free
And voila the top result is a website that can provide you professional Photoshop brushes that you have to pay for. Google Advanced Search helped us generate some relevant results.
This OR That
If you search for anything on Google it will try to include all the words used in your search. In this case you can refine your search to return results that include either one thing or the other, or in some case both.
For example: “Superman” OR “Clark Kent”. It’s important to note that you have to capitalize “OR”.
If you place the search terms in a set of parenthesis they will be treated as single units each, such as (“Superman” OR “Clark Kent”) (“Henry Cavill” “Tom Welling”)
Using this method will return results that contain either “Superman” or “Clark Kent” and also the name of either actors in the second parenthesis.
Also Read: Google Zero Gravity, Anti Gravity Tricks
Searching Within A Specific Website
Definitely my favorite function because it improved my research efficiency and allowed me to use Google Advanced Search in order to search a website in case the search function was broken.
Example: “Trevor Noah” site:bbc.com This will show us references of the comedian within the website www.bbc.com Similarly, you can use a function called “site attribute” to limit searches to certain domains such as “driver’s license” site: .gov This will give you results for the phrase “driver’s license” only on governmental websites with .gov domains.
If you’re looking for a product on a website but you can’t find it and wish to search for websites with similar content you can use the related search function.
If you want to search for pages that link to a certain website you can use the connectivity function.
Example: link:madthesis.com This will return results of pages that link towards www.madthesis.com
Google Operator Info
I know we mentioned you should take notes, but here’s an easier way out in case you don’t want to remember all of the functions above. If you want to have most of those options available and at your fingertips when you want to search within a specific websites you can use the info function.
And this will return the following options which differ from one website to another based on how they are optimized
One of the easiest tools to use which most people tend to overlook are the search tools provided right on Google Search below the search bar.
If I want to search for news article or an IT solution but want to make sure I don’t get any kind of outdated results, I can click on “Tools” in the upper-right corner and select a time frame to limit Google’s results specifically to entries that are no older than an amount of time I want. I can also change the result type to be less “spread out” and go to verbatim as a solution.
These are just some of the most useful features provided by using Google Advanced Search. In theory, you could learn to use them and speed up your research process greatly.