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Short Tutorial/FAQ – How Do I Efficiently Search On Google?

Download Graphics to View Question: Sometimes it seems to take forever to find the exact information I need on Google. How can I do a search that's more efficient?

Answer: To increase the efficiency of your searches, try these techniques:
  1. Use quotation marks.
    When searching for something specific, try using quotation marks to minimize the guesswork for Google search. When you put your search parameters inside quotation marks, it tells the search engine to search for the whole phrase.

    For instance, if you search for Puppy Dog Sweaters, Google will search for content that contains those three words in any order. However, if you search "Puppy Dog Sweaters," it will search for that phrase exactly as you typed it. This can help locate specific information that may be buried under other content if not sorted out correctly.

  2. Use a hyphen to exclude words.
    Sometimes you may find yourself searching for a word with an ambiguous meaning. An example is Mustang. When you Google search for Mustang, you may get results for both the car made by Ford or the horse. If you want to cut one out, use the hyphen. When you enter Mustang - cars," it tells the search engine to search for mustangs but to remove any results that have the word car in it. This tip can save you lots of time when doing searches.

  3. Use a colon to search specific sites.
    There may be an instance where you need to Google search for articles or content on a certain website. For example, if you enter Wayne Gretzky, Google will search for all content about the famous hockey player, but only on All other search results will be removed.

  4. Use the asterisk wildcard.
    When you use an asterisk in a search term on Google search, it will leave a placeholder that may be automatically filled by the search engine later. This is a brilliant way to find song lyrics if you don't know all the words.

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