Google Search Tricks: Tips to Improve Relevant Results

Google Search Tricks: Tips to Improve Relevant Results

Range Govindan
Nov 11, 2010

Google has remained our go-to search tool, and no matter what Google's competitors say, the search engine's results are fast, the most relevant, and on the money when it comes to our search queries. But there are some easy ways to further hone Google's search results to be even more precise...

Recently, someone mentioned how he enjoyed seeing at least 100 Google search results on every query he ran. For a moment, I was dumbfounded. It made no sense to me, as I prefer to be presented with what I'm looking for immediately amongst the first results. I do check some pages when I feel there might be some additional resources buried beneath, but I rarely need to check up on hundreds of search results. This made me think of the ways that I have been some Google tricks to further refine my searches.

1. Site Specific Search
When you want to search a specific site using Google, simply type in 'site:unplggd.com inbox zero' to find the posts that features 'inbox zero' from Unplggd. I find that some sites use different search engines, and they are rarely as good as the results from Google.

2. Converting Currencies
Converting currencies is very straightforward, a task I do daily since I deal in different currencies professionally. The syntax for conversion with Google is pretty simple as well: 'convert 100 CAD to USD'. An additional shortcut includes exclusing the 'to USD' part if you are converting a foreign currency into your local one. Google is smart enough to know where you are.

3. Converting Units of Measure
Converting from metric to the one you favor is easy as well. It makes finding out different quantities very simple. The syntax is easy to remember: 'convert 1m into inches'.

4. Using Quotation Marks
If you're looking for a specific phrase or sentence, and keep getting non-relevant results, try using quotation marks. This cuts down on the useless results fairly quickly.

5. Using '+' and '-' Operators
Once you've run a search and haven't found what you are looking for, you can further refine the search by including extra keywords with the '+' operator and excluding keywords with the '-' operator. It's easy to whittle down thousands of results to just a few using these operators.

[Illustration via Boomerang]

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