Navigate Google Like a Pro
With every passing day Google seems to release the next big ‘thing’ that
everybody is talking about. Google’s developments aside,
knowing how to use the Google interface to its fullest capacity is an
opportunity for all internet users to seek, gain and find information
instantaneously whether web surfing in Vancouver or Bangkok. As such, here are a
few common Google shortcuts as they relate to search engine
marketing and positioning as well as general web search.
Search like a pro
Since it’s possible to find the answer to almost any question online, knowing
how to get the answer quickly is better than searching for hours. With this is
mind, here are a few hints savvy Googler hints:
- If you type “starbucks locations” into the Google search box,
search the words Starbucks and locations.
- If you’re looking for information on particular subject area and can't
decide what words to submit in your search query, type both in the search box
and Google will bring up search results for both words, for example “jogging or
- For a broader search type “~blinds” into the search box and
Google will search
for the word blinds and its synonyms.
- If you only want to search a specific phrase, use quotations. For example “to
be or not to be.”
- If you want to find out information about a particular subject area omitting
certain results, type “brad pitt –angelina jolie” which will search “Brad Pitt”
without “Angelina Jolie.”
- Finally, if you want find an item which includes an associated number, type in
the item plus the number, for example “naked gun +2” results in the movie “The
Naked Gun 2½.”
Search only one site
If you or your SEO colleague recently submitted your site to Google and you want
to know if you’ve been listed, type “site:www.yoursitename.com” into the address bar
and Google will return all indexed pages of that site.
Check backwards links
When Google assigns pagerank to a webpage, the amount and quality of on-topic
links to your site is of high priority. Therefore, to check how many backwards
links are pointing to your site, enter “link:www.sitename.com” into the address
Find similar pages
If you are looking to get more information on a particular site and want to see
related pages, enter “related:www.yoursitename.com” into the address bar.
Find information about a webpage
If you would like to find a plethora of information about a particular website
or webpage, type “info:www.yoursitename.com” into the address bar.
Searching for keywords
One key tactic for properly for optimizing a site is using the appropriate keyword
density. To find keyword information via Google, here are few
- To search for keywords in a page title enter “allintitle:<keyword>”
- To search for keywords in the body text enter “intext:<keyword>”
- To search for keywords within a specific country enter “site: .ca “<keyword>””
If you’re at work and want to find information about an everyday topic which
may in some contexts contain adult content, type “safesearch:<keyword>”
to find the information without the smut.
Define a word
Enter “define: <insert word here>” into the search box. Example: define: blog
If you’re without calculator and need to solve a quick equation, Google’s search
box can be used as a number cruncher. Type 1+1 into the search box and see
for yourself. To divide press the forward slash (/); to multiply press the star
(*); to subtract press the dash (-); to get the percentage of a number press the
percentage symbol and “of” (50% of 100), and finally, if you’re a real math wiz,
you can raise numbers to a power by typing 2^6 which will say to Google: find me
the answer for two to the sixth power.
On a similar note, other common equations are from Fahrenheit to Celsius,
kilometres to miles and so on. To do a conversion of this nature, type “118 Fahrenheit in Celsius” or “1000km in miles” to get your
To find out the latest news or market fluctuation of your favourite stock, type
“<stock symbol>” in the search box.
By Trish McCloy, writing for Stand Marketing, a Vancouver Internet Marketing Company.
For more information on site maps and SEO, check out our list of
search engine promotion services.