Google is so entrenched in our lives, it’s become the generic word for searching for things online. Whatever you are looking for, just google it.
However searching for certain information can sometimes be tricky for many business and public relations professionals.
Here are 12 tips on how to make your Google search faster and more effective.
Eliminate unwanted results with the minus symbol
If you are trying to search for a term that’s generating a lot of results you don’t need, you can use the minus symbol (-).
This tells Google to find results that exclude the words preceded by a minus symbol. For example, jaguar-car will give you all the results for jaguar and exclude the car results.
Use the tabs
The next tip is to use the tabs in Google search. On the top of every search are a number of tabs. Usually you’ll see Web, Image, News, and More. Using these tabs, you can help define what kind of search you need to do.
If you need images, use the Image tab. If you are looking for a recent news article, use the News tab. This is so basic, but many business and public relations people miss it.
When Google searching for something specific, try using quotes to minimize the guesswork for Google search. When you put your search parameters in quotes, it tells the search engine to search for the whole phrase.
For instance, if you search for Latest PR trends, the engine will search for content that contains those three words in any order.
However, if you search “Latest PR trends”, it will search for that phrase exactly as you typed it.
Similarly “Richard-Mofe Damijo Nollywood movies” will show you only RMD movies, and not all other information on RMD and Nolllywood.
Use asterisks to remember
You’re searching for a specific quote, but one of the words slips your mind. Put an asterisk in its place. “Four score and * years ago.”
To you or me, that may not make sense. However, Google search will search for that phrase knowing that the asterisks can be any word.
Find similar sites
Are there some websites you really like and you want to find similar websites? Simply type in “related:” and then the address of the website, without a space. For example:
With this, you won’t find a link to Amazon. Instead, you’ll find links to other online stores like Jumai, Konga, Shopify and others.
Add a tilde (~) in front of a word to find synonyms
Use this when you want to Google search for a specific word and any synonyms for that word. If you search for iPhone ~cheap, you will also get results for “iPhone inexpensive,” and so forth.
Insert two periods (..) between numbers to search for a range
If you want to narrow results to a date or price range, use two periods in between the numbers. You could be looking for a computer within a certain price range, so you could search laptops N400,000..N700,000 to only get results that fit into that range.
Find one result or the other with OR
If you’re looking for results that are about one topic or another, but nothing else, use the OR modifier to get more accurate results.
For example, searching apple microsoft will surface results relating to either term, but searching “apple OR microsoft” provides you with separate links about Apple and Microsoft.
Add site: to search a single website
If you want results from one specific website, use site: followed directly by the site URL you wish to use. You must include the site’s domain, e.g. Google Photos tips site:pcmag.com, and not Google Photos tips site:pcmag.
Search File Types
If you’re looking for a specific kind of file on the internet, use filetype: to search only for uploaded files that match your query. For example, use filetype:pdf to find a PDF or filetype:doc to locate a Microsoft Office document.
Reverse image search
Finding a larger version of an image you found somewhere is very easy if you use Google’s reverse image search. Go to Google.com, click the Images link in the upper right corner and either drag and drop an image onto the page or click the camera icon and paste the image URL into the field.
When the image uploads or you hit enter, any other indexed instances of that image online will appear.
Search a range of numbers or dates
When you’re shopping on a budget, you can search for products within a specific price range. Just search something like coffee maker $50..$100. In most cases, this will narrow the results to products within your price range.