Advance Your Google Searching

Posted by Macrae , MaIT

Google is king of the search engines. According to SearchEngineWatch.com, Google holds over 65% of the market. The main reason for Google’s success comes from their intense efforts to improve their search result algorithm and their constant campaigns against Spammy Black Hat SEO. The fruit of Google’s labor is more accurate and relevant search results for their users. Google is hands down the best search engine, which is why more people use Google over other search engines such as Bing, Yahoo, and Ask.com.

Google Search

Google is incredibly easy to use. Simply visit Google.com and type in whatever you’re looking for into their search box. The text you put into the search bar is called the query, or search query. Google does not consider letter casing and ignores most punctuation in the query.
Google Search home page
Depending on what you type in, Google will provide a list of results. These results sometimes are mistaken to be a list of websites, but in reality they are a list of webpages. Most searches on Google are considered basic, not in the context of the key words themselves, but rather the complexity of the search query itself. Google is usually able to satisfy the user by providing them the results they are looking for. But if not,  you may need to get more specific to dig deeper into Google’s vast database of content. Luckily, Google provides a way.


Google Search with Punctuations

Google offers the ability to add search operators to a query. Even though Google ignores punctuations in the query, there are a few that it considers.

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Google Search Operators

Google’s search operators allow users to find more detailed information. SEO specialist often use these to see how many and what URLs have been index by Google. This is extremely important to know when restructuring a websites architecture, changing the domain name, or consolidating websites by creating 301 redirects for each indexed URL (if it has changed of course). In order to see what URLs have been indexed, you use the “site:” operator followed by the domain name you want to check.

site:bluekeyinteractive.com

The above query will display all webpages that have been indexed for the domain bluekeyinteractive.com, you can see the results here. Let’s get even more specific. Adding a string to the query tells Google you would like to look for any pages that contains the exact text.

site:bluekeyinteractive.com "Google"

Adding a string to this query displays all URLs associated to the domain bluekeyinteractive.com that contain the word “Google” within the index-able content of the page. You can see the new results here.

There are many more search operators that Google provides its users for more detailed searching. You can find a comprehensive list of all search operators on GoogleGuide.com

Google Advanced Search

If using search operators is too complicated, or if you have a hard time remembering all of the options, Google does provide an interface option with their Advanced Search Page. From here you can input data into text fields and select options from drop down menus to specify your search query.

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