Hackernoon logoThe Art of Searching something on the Internet. by@vikasharry03

The Art of Searching something on the Internet.

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@vikasharry03Vikas Yadav

Mostly referred as “The art of Googling”. Many times it happens that we wish to search on the Internet for some topic and we end up getting unsatisfactory results. Here is a list of hacks experts like Quincy Larson have recommended which you may consider whenever you are conducting a search for any topic.

  • You can search within a particular URL by including the operator site:example.com before or after your keywords. Extremely helpful to search on programming websites that do not have a search functionality.
  • If you’re looking for an exact phrase, use quotation marks around the keywords to view results containing that exact phrase.
  • If your search terms contain a keyword with several meanings, you can exclude one of the meanings by adding a hyphen (-) before the keyword.
  • Google omits most non-alphanumeric characters from its queries. Symbols that programmers use all the time like !@#$%^& and * aren’t searched. Neither are (){}[]. Fortunately, DuckDuckGo recently started supporting all characters in searches. So consider using DuckDuckGo for your more sophisticated searches. They really are the most programmer-friendly search engine.
  • To generate content similar to those found on a URL you already know, use the related: operator before adding the URL.
  • You can retrieve pages whose titles contain the keywords you’re searching for, by using the allintitle: operator.
  • To retrieve pages where all the keywords appear in the body of the page, use the allintext: operator before the search terms.
  • You can enter more than one query into Google at a time to view pages with one of the specified keywords. Just use a capitalised “OR” to separate the terms.
  • To look for news items emerging from a particular location, use the location: operator, then add the city name.
  • An asterisk acts as a wildcard to help you find the missing word in a phrase.
  • Using the link: operator, you can find pages that link to another url. This is probably more useful for SEOs who are searching for backlinks to a specific page.
  • If you’re looking for a specific file on the Web, you can use the filetype: operator to specify the particular document type you’re searching for, and Google will restrict results to pages containing those document types.
  • Use words that websites would use

When people use Google search to hunt the web, they generally search for things using the same language that they would use for speaking. Unfortunately, websites don’t say things the way people do; instead, they try to use language that sounds professional. Let’s look at some examples.

  • “I have a flat tire” could be replaced by “repair a flat tire.”
  • “My head hurts” could be replaced by “headache relief.”

The list goes on and on. When searching, try to use terminology you would find on a professional website. This will help you get more reliable results.

  • Use important words only

The way Google search works is to take what you search for and match it with keywords in online content. When you search for too many words, it may limit your results. That means it may actually take you longer to find what you’re looking for. Thus, it is apropos to use only the important words when searching for something. Let’s see an example.

  • Don’t use: Where can I find a Chinese restaurant that delivers.
  • Instead try: Chinese restaurants nearby.
  • Or: Chinese restaurants near me.

Doing this can help Google find what you need without all the clutter. So remember, keep it simple and use important words only.

Happy Searching !


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