Google allows its users to search using advanced search operators. Search operators let the users filter out or refine results according to their own needs. In this article, we will discuss about many advanced search operators to search efficiently.
How many times you find yourself helpless when you can’t get the desired results from Google Search? According to the statistics of 2011, more than 1 billion unique people visited Google daily and Google uses about 20 petabytes (1015) of user-generated data every day. Then why some of us still unable to search from this huge pool of information? How can you make your search queries more efficient? These are some questions we are going to answer in today’s article.
If you are in a hurry, you can go through the following slide which lists download all the operators along with their brief functionality.
Quotations – Specific Phrase Search
Quotations are useful when you have to find or search the exact phrase on the web. These are helpful in finding name, song lyrics or a line in a piece of literature. You have to be very careful when using this operator because it omits all other relevant searches and matches only the exact ones.
This operator provides a helping hand when your search contain vague meaning or not listed in the Google. If you search the already defined phrases, then you do not see any major difference.
Dash/Minus – Specific Exclude Search
Dash operator works opposite to quotation operator. When you have to exclude any searches in your search results, dash operator will do the work for you.
Dash operator if used before a word, then all the pages having that result will be excluded and not indexed in your search result. The operator is helpful when your query contain synonyms like Apple. Now if you search for “Apple", you will find all about Apple Computers on first page, but if you search “Apple -computer –iphone", the results are different.
This operator is also used with the combinations of other operators to exclude the results specifically from a particular site.
Syntax: query –WordToExcludeFromResults
Star – Whole word Wildcard
This operator is more like to fill in the blanks. You can use this operator if you do not remember any particular word from a quote or a part of any literature. Using wildcard operator allows Google to guess the fill in the blanks for you.
When you use wildcard, Google finds the best possible results according to its user integrated data. It is best to use when you do not remember some words of book, quote or song lyrics.
OR – Search for one or whole
OR keyword is used when you have to find the result of only one phrase and do not want other to include. This operator is best used when your query has similar matches of different events. Like if you search “World Cup Football ", you will have the result of all the world cup football events taken place till date, but if you use OR operators like “World Cup Football 2010 OR 2014", then search results differ.
The operator matches the word which are on either side or both excluding the general results.
.. – Range Search
This operator is used when you have to find the range of any specific thing. The query with range operator only has results which are in specified range between two periods.
This operator is best used when you have to find the price of any product or measurement of any material etc.
Syntax: query starting_range..ending_range
Filetype – Search only a specific format of file
This Google search operator restricts your search to a specific file format defined.
Syntax: query filetype: format
This is another useful Google operator used to find the related or just alike pages. If you want to find the web pages which are similar to your search query then this operator is best for use.
Related operator bring the pages which are similar to the URL searched for.
Contain is the most useful Google search operator used in daily search queries. It finds the link of a particular file defined after it and list only those pages who are defined on the contain links.
For example if you want to search the songs of One republic with MP3 format then instead of searching about One Republic songs, you can use this operator as One Republic songs contains:MP3
This Google search operator is used when you have to find the associated link contain with a particular domain.
The operator is restricted with domain level instead of page level. When using this operator you should not include http:// with the domain name.
Site searches for a query within a specified domain. When we enter any query with site, we restrict its domain to a particular level.
It is useful when we have to find any person’s profile in a particular social network and not on all the networks it is connected.
An operator used to find the most recent web pages indexed on Google. It is used to find the date the web page is last indexed on Google and represent a snapshot of the page defined. It is particularly useful for accessing a page which is down at the moment but can be opened from Google index.
Link operator is used to find the backlinks of any specified site.
Link operator do not give complete listing of backlinks, but only offers a sample of what sites are linking to the URL.
Info is a useful operator to find the information of any web page. Info operator list the complete details of the web integrated with Google including its cache, links, similar to etc
Inurl operator find and searches for a single phrase or word specified by the operator. This operator is also useful when you have to find a particular keyword in a URL.
Inurl is also used as allinurl. In searching blog the same result goes with blogurl, used to find the articles on a specified web page or platform.
Similar with inurl, intext finds the keywords or phrase in the context of web page. It omits all the search results who do not have mentioned text.
Similar operators are inanchor and intitle who search for the anchor text and title defined in search query.
Last but not the least, this allinpostauthor operator searches for all the web pages owned by Specific writer. In addition, it also lists all the details of the author.
These are some Google operators which are used frequently by the users. Apart from these, there are hundreds of more operators supported by Google Search to make search more efficient and useful. The above listed operators can be used with the mixture of other operators to make the search more proficient and capable.
Which one of these operators you use in your daily search? Which do you like more useful among them? Let us know your opinion through comments!