10 Google Operators for Advanced Search to Use Daily
Are you still using Google for search?
Yeah, I know. It sucks by now. Yet sometimes you have to.
These advanced search operators can help you find what you know must be there.
Using them you can unearth the hidden gems still covered up beyond all that crap that pollutes Google.
Sorry for being so outspoken. Yet I’m just voicing what my visitors say!
Are You an Advanced Searcher?
Why I’m an Advanced Searcher on Google?
I am using Google not as a searcher but as an search engine optimizer.
As I optimize websites and content for Google I have to look it up there.
Often highly optimized and very helpful content from my clients won’t get found.
Then I have to check what happened and why buggy Google hasn’t
- ranked it.
I apply so called advanced search operators to achieve this.
They aren’t that advanced once you know them btw. So don’t fret!
Still most people don’t use them.
You know once you check your search queries on Search Console.
Most people do not use any operators at all!
What is an operator in the first place?
It’s just a command that makes Google look for more exact matches of what you want.
Thus I want to show you the Google operators I use daily to get better search results faster:
Google Fails to Find What You Want? Use These!
So you know there must be a useful search results somewhere?
You work for a client site and they have created highly valuable and relevant content that still can’t be found?
These are the Google search operators you will need the most! See below.
The actual examples are shown in square brackets to make distinguishable from the rest of the text!
[“”] quotation search: [“example search”]
The quotation marks as in [“example search”] help you find exactly what you want instead of both words randomly found in a document.
Exact search allows you to find sentences and expression whereas simple search just cuts out everything in between.
Often quotation marks change the results significantly even without dropping words!
[-] or minus: [example -search]
The minus or disambiguation search allows you to find instances of a term without another one.
Often a search query result will be combined with a popular yet irrelevant other term!
So when you look for a hotel and not an ex-president or politician you want to look for [trump – president].
[site:] – or specific site search – [site:example.com]
The [site:] operator allows you to search a particular site on Google.
Why would you do that? Many sites do not even offer internal search.
Others change a lot so that you might know content shoudl be there but isn’t visible anymore.
[OR] – the “or” operator aka both search – [example OR search]
So you are not sure which one of two (or more) things you want? Or you want both at once?
The “or” operator is your friend!
In cases where it does not matter which word you choose but you want to find both due to slight differences, also use OR!
Example: viagra OR levitra – here you do not ask which one is better as in “Viagra or Levitra?” but you want to search both to choose from.
[cache:] – the Google cache lookup – [cache:example.com]
A cache search retrieves a copy of a website page as archived by Google.
When a site is down or has been changed recently, a cache search will prove useful! Why?
A search query like [cache:example.com] will unearth the last version of the page saved by Google on their servers.
[filetype:] – the file type search – [example filetype:PDF]
You search for a particular resource that is more than a website page written in plain HTML?
You may want to use the file type search to speed things up!
An ebook will be searched for when you use the PDF or epup file type extension e.g.
Example: [seo 2.0 ebook filetype:pdf]
[inurl/allinurl:] – website address search – [allinurl:example]
Only documents which contain some or all of the keywords in the internet address
[intitle/allintitle:] – title (headline) search – [allintitle:example]
Only documents which contain some or all of the keywords in the title of the page
[*] – asterisk or also search – [example*]
Just compare the searches for sex, sex* and *sex*
[define:] – definition search – [define:example]
Instead of reading my blog for ages, just search for define:SEO
Why Use Search Operators? It’s Not Just a Time Saver!
Using these search operators will save you tons of time.
Yet you will also experience much less frustration.
Last but not least you will have the results you were looking for in the first place.
Just imagine saving 30 seconds per search query you want to locate!
30 seconds per search query mean half an hour a day if you search the web 100 times a day (like I sometimes do).
That’s literally adding up so that you will one day be able to go to Mars as in the popular band name “30 Seconds to Mars”.