Small Business Hub gives twelve tips on how to improve your productivity by searching Google more efficiently. In case you didn’t know, Google accepts “cryptic” searches for highly specific information. One such example is entering “site:lifehack.org Your search criteria” and Google will only search Lifehack.org for your search criteria. Small Business Hub explains several other ways to search Google that are bound to improve your search accuracy.

Explicit Phrase: Lets say you are looking for content about internet marketing. Instead of just typing internet marketing into the Google search box, you will likely be better off searching explicitly for the phrase. To do this, simply enclose the search phrase within double quotes.

Example: “internet marketing”

Exclude Words: Lets say you want to search for content about internet marketing, but you want to exclude any results that contain the term advertising. To do this, simply use the “-“ sign in front of the word you want to exclude.

Example Search: internet marketing -advertising

Similar Words and Synonyms: Let’s say you are want to include a word in your search, but want to include results that contain similar words or synonyms. To do this, use the “~” in front of the word.

Example: “internet marketing” ~professional

Specific Document Types: If you’re looking to find results that are of a specific type, you can use the modifier “filetype:”. For example, you might want to find only PowerPoint presentations related to internet marketing.

Example: “internet marketing” filetype:ppt

This OR That: By default, when you do a search, Google will include all the terms specified in the search. If you are looking for any one of one or more terms to match, then you can use the OR operator. (Note: The OR has to be capitalized).

Example: internet marketing OR advertising

Phone Listing: Let’s say someone calls you on your mobile number and you don’t know how it is. If all you have is a phone number, you can look it up on Google using the phonebook feature.

Example: phonebook:617-555-1212 (note: the provided number does not work – you’ll have to use a real number to get any results).

Area Code Lookup: If all you need to do is to look-up the area code for a phone number, just enter the 3-digit area code and Google will tell you where it’s from.

Example: 617

12 Quick Tips To Search Google Like An Expert – [Small Business Hub]

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