Google Advanced Search

Google is a great tool to help you find what you are looking for, but knowing the ins and outs of using Google’s various search operators can help you use it to its full potential.
I have compiled a list of Google Advanced Search Operators, which are key phrases/symbols you can add to the search bar or the URL in a Google search to get more exact results.
Click through this handy guide to find out how you can get the most out of Google Search. The true power of this is when we mix and match these operators and modifiers to perform complex searches.
Google advanced search operators are the bread and butter of seasoned SEO specialists. Most digital marketers would be quite familiar with these and will not need a cheat sheet for most, but for anyone starting out these Google advanced search operators can prove to be quite tricky. This is why I have decided to maintain a Google Advanced Search Operator cheat sheet that you can bookmark for future reference. I hope to keep this list updated with the latest Google advanced search operator tips and tricks and also will be looking at standard Google search operators and URL Modifiers.
Search operators are split in to Symbols, Basic and Advance. They are used in the Google search field – where you type in your query while using Google. The URL modifiers are used in the URL field at the top of your browser to fine tune the search results.
For the Purpose of this Article and to demonstrate how they can be applied I will just use some Example Search Words but those can be replaced by ANY other Word or Words.
First off a List of Symbols which can be used (correct and updated at time of writing) but if you know of any others which have been added please let me know and I will glady add them.

Symbols

  • ” [Quotation marks]
    • When you put a word or phrase in quotes, the results will only include pages with the same words in the same order as the ones inside the quotes. Say you search for king jacob twitter ( no quotes ) you get the results for Jacob King’s twitter account. If you put that in quotes “king jacob twitter” ( with quotes ) Google will look for those terms in the given order. You can use this operator when you’re looking for an exact word or phrase.
      It’s also useful to force Google to search for the keyword you provide and not auto correct your query “colorhunt” vs “colourhunt” (with a U)
  • _ [Underscore]
    • This is a tricky one because it does not work in traditional search but is an awesome little operator to gather keyword ideas in Google auto-suggest. Just drop the _ between two keywords and Google will give you a few suggested filler keywords that they think are important from a search user’s point of view. You obviously want to be in Incognito mode for this.
  • * [Asterisk]
    • Asterisk can be used as a placeholder for any unknown or wildcard terms. This is a great operator when you are not sure of a certain part of the query.
      e.g. a * in need is a friend *
  • – [Minus]
    • When you use a dash before a word or site, it excludes sites with that info from your results. This is useful for words with multiple meanings, like Jaguar the car brand and jaguar the animal.
      e.g. jaguar speed -car vs jaguar speed
  • | [Pipe operator]
    • The pipe operator functions with the same logic as an OR operator – you can just as easily use the word “OR” instead of the pipe operator, provided it’s in CAPS. This means that Google will look for either the first word or the second word or both.e.g. kylo ren vs kylo | ren. You will see that when you search for “kylo | ren” a brand called Renskincare comes up because it matches the OR query for Ren.
  • .. [Range operator]
    • You can put 2 periods between the numbers, with no space and add a unit of measure to specify a range e.g. 20..80 years old will give you results which specifies numbers between 20 and 80. Another use for this is to add .. as a suffix and Google will give you results greater than the number e.g. 20.. years old gives results where numbers greater than 20 are mentioned.

Basic Operators

  • OR
    • This is the same as the pipe operator “|” mentioned above.e.g. kylo ren vs kylo OR ren. You will see that when you search for “kylo OR ren” a brand called Renskincare comes up because it matches the OR query for Ren.
  • filetype:
    • Restricts the search results by file type extension — it’s great when you only want to look for images, PPT, etc.e.g. TED talk filetype:ppt for powerpoints, or TED talk filetype:doc if you’re looking for word documents instead.
  • site:
    • Restricts the search results to a specific top level domain or standard domain – it’s for when you want to get results from a specific site or only from .gov sites etc.e.g. healthcare site:.gov for results from only .gov TLD and for site specific search you would use something like this review link site:supple.com.au
  • related:
    • This is the operator you use to find other sites that are similar to the one you provide. It’s great when you want to figure out who your organic competitors are. Others use this feature to discover other possible sources that could link to you by providing a site that links to your content. Please note that you can use domain or URI as the parameter for this but NOT keywords.
      e.g. These folks are my organic competition related:saijogeorge.com. NOTE: DON’T add a space after the :, if you do Google will just do a keyword search. e.g. related: saijogeorge.com
  • cache:
    • You can see what a page looked like the last time Google visited the page, here is how BBC looked the last time Google visited them cache:bbc.com

Advanced Operators

  • allintext: / intext:
    • Limits the search results to content that has the query terms you specify in the text on the page. allintext: should be used at the start of the query and will only return results that include all the included keywords. intext: can be used anywhere in the query and will only include the term immediately following the :.Using allintext: hacker news ycombinator looks for results with all three words in the on-page text content. You can use hacker news intext:ycombinator to get results with ycombinator in the text and hacker or news appearing anywhere on the page.
  • allintitle: / intitle:
    • If you start your query with allintitle: Google only shows you results containing pages that use all the query terms you specify in the meta title. When we search for allintitle: Google Review Direct Link Generator Google looks for results with all these words in the meta title.
  • allinurl: / inurl:
    • With the allinurl: operator Google shows you results containing pages that use all the query terms you specify in the url. When we search for allinurl: Supple Google looks for results with supple in the url.
  • allinanchor: / inanchor:
    • allinanchor: returns results to those pages where all the keywords are used as anchor text. Let us consider this example : allinanchor: styleguides saijo returns the pages that are linked to using the words “styleguides” and “saijo”.
  • AROUND()
    • This operator allows you to specify keyword proximity by limiting the number of words that can appear between two keywords. The AROUND() operator MUST BE IN CAPS and the number sets the max distance between the two terms. Say you want to asses the relationship between two terms ( petrol and diesel ) with your main keyword ( car ) you could do something like this car AROUND(2) petrol and car AROUND(2) diesel
  • Difference between allin… and in…
    • — The allin…. operators should be used at the start of your query and can have a space after the :
      — The NON allin…. versions can be used multiple times in a query and the term should be included after the : with no space.
      — Something like allintitle: Saijo George is the same as intitle:Saijo intitle:George
      — allin…. operators can’t be used with any other operators.

URL Modifiers

  • Info about URL Modifiers
    • Unlike the search operators these are not something you can add to the Google search box but these modifiers should be added to the SERP (Search Engine Result Pages) URL.
  • &tbs=qdr:h – Results from past Hour
    • With this URL modifier Google will display the results from the past hour. To trigger this just add &tbs=qdr:h to the end of the SERP URL. You can also modify the parameter to show different time ranges as shown below— &tbs=qdr:s – Results from past sec, e.g. star wars&tbs=qdr:n – Results from past minute, e.g. star wars

      &tbs=qdr:h – Results from past hour, e.g. star wars

      &tbs=qdr:d – Results from past day, e.g. star wars

      &tbs=qdr:w – Results from past week, e.g. star wars

      &tbs=qdr:m – Results from past month, e.g. star wars

      &tbs=qdr:y – Results from past year, e.g. star wars

      Remember you can also specify the number at the end of these parameters to specify the time e.g. &tbs=qdr:s10 = results from last 10 seconds, &tbs=qdr:n10 = results from last 10 minutes, etc.

      You can also get the results from a specific date range e.g. results from 2015. Just use this parameter &tbs=cdr:1,cd_min:1/01/2015,cd_max:31/12/2015 ( swap out the start and end date as needed ).

  • &tbm=blg – Blog Search
  • &tbm=app – App Search
    • Use this modifier to bring up Google app search for your query. app search for puppy. App query can be further modified using these secondary parameters:— &tbs=app_price:free – To get free apps e.g. free puppy apps&tbs=app_price:paid – To get paid apps e.g. paid puppy apps

      &tbs=app_os:1 – To get android apps e.g. Android puppy apps

      &tbs=app_os:13 – To get iOS apps e.g. iOS puppy apps

      Some of these can be stacked together to fine-tune the results. e.g. To get free Android apps you can use both &tbs=app_os:1 and &tbs=app_price:free, eg free android puppy apps.

  • &tbm=vid – Video Search
    • Use this modifier to bring up Google video search for your query. video search for puppy. Video query can be further modified using these secondary parameters:Country operator only works if you use country specific Google domains, e.g. if you want to restrict the results the to only websites targeting Australian users you can add the URL modifier &cr=countryAU to a query on the Google.com.au domain. It will not work on .com, .co.uk or other Google domains.— Results from UK – Google.co.uk

      Results from India – Google.co.in

      Use this country specific video search URL generator, to create your custom search URL, we only list countries that support the &cr=country operator.

  • &tbm=pts – Patent Search
    • Use this modifier to bring up Google patent search for your query. patent search for mobile. Patent query can be further modified using these secondary parameters:Country operator only works if you use country specific Google domains, e.g. if you want to restrict the results to only websites targeting Cypriot users you can add the URL modifier &cr=countryCY to a query on the Google.com.cy domain. It will not work on .com, .co.uk or other Google domains.— Results from UK – Google.co.uk

      Results from India – Google.co.in

      Use this country specific video search URL generator, to create your custom search URL, we only list countries that support the &cr=country operator.

  • &tbm=shop – Shopping Search
    • Use this modifier to bring up Google shopping results for your query e.g. shopping search for mobile. Shopping query can be further modified using these secondary parameters:&tbs=local_avail:1 – limits results to locally available products&tbs=new:1 – limits results to new items

      &tbs=brand:nokia – limits results to products from nokia, you can obviously replace the name of the brand with other brand names. &tbs=brand:nokia try replacing nokia with lg, samsung, etc.

      You can also get shopping results between specific price ranges e.g. mobile phone between $50 – $170. Just use this parameter &tbs=price:1,ppr_min:50,ppr_max:170 ( swap out the min and max price as needed ).

  • &tbs=li:1 – Verbatim
    • With this URL modifier Google will use the literal words you entered without making normal improvements such as automatic spelling corrections, looking for synonyms , etc. To trigger this just add &tbs=li:1 to the end of the SERP(Search Engine Result Pages) URL. Here is a standard search for beogle puppy where google auto-corrects your query and a verbatim search for beogle puppy
  • &cr=countryCY – Results from Cypriot Websites
    • This operator only works if you use country specific Google domains, e.g. if you want to restrict the results to only websites targeting Cypriot users you can add the URL modifier &cr=countryCY to a query on the Google.com.cy domain. It will not work on .com, .co.uk or other Google domains.— Results from UK – Google.co.ukResults from India – Google.co.in

      Use this country specific video search URL generator, to create your custom search URL, we only list countries that support the &cr=country operator.

  • &pws=0 – Disable personalized Results
    • Finding a lot of personalized results in the SERP? Look out for things like You’ve visited this page x times. OR results from G+ etc. Slapping on &pws=0 at the end of the SERP URL should give you non personalized results.
  • &filter=0 – Disable filtering of Results
    • You might have noticed that at times you get a message saying something like this, In order to show you the most relevant results, we have omitted some entries very similar to the x already displayed.
      If you like, you can repeat the search with the omitted results included.
      To get unfiltered result just add &filter=0 at the end of the SERP URL e.g. non filtered results.
  • &tbm=lcl – Bring up Local Finder
    • If you want to bring up the Local Finder for any local search just add the operator &tbm=lcl to the end of the URL.You may or may not get the regular result with the Snak Pak for certain queries eg: Credit Cards now to get the Local Finder for this result you add &tbm=lcl to the end of the URL : Credit Cards with Local Finder

      This URL modifier was suggested by Darren Shaw the founder of Whitespark, a company that builds software and provide services for local SEO.

Custom Templates

  • Identify Keyword Difficulty
    • When you want to identify how difficult a particular keyword is going to be, it’s a good idea to look at these three allintext:, allintitle: and allinanchor: operators. For example, , if you want to see how difficult it will be to rank for the term ‘œmelbourne plumbers’, you can perform these searches— allintext: – this will tell us how many pages have optimized their content with this keyword— allintitle: – this will tell us how many pages have optimized their title with this keyword

      allinanchor: – this will tell us how many pages have built links with this keyword

      SaijoGeorge is the SEO Strategy Director at Supple, an award winning digital agency from Melbourne, Australia. He co-organizes the Melbourne SEO Meetups and is always thinking about the next side project.

  • Looking for cat Gifs?
    • If you are looking for gifs Ria Blagburn has a handy tip. She often finds funny gifs using the image search modifier &tbm=isch with secondary modifiers for imzge size isz:m and type itp:animated. So this is the cat gif modifier you want to use.

      Ria Blagburn is a content and marketing specialist and helps startups refine their sales and marketing strategy as co-founder of GrowBeyond.

  • Discover Local Forums
    • Hardy uses a combination of site: and inurl: operator to find local forums about any given topic. Check out two of the sample query he uses one and two.

      Hardy is a SEO expert who helps SMB owners connect with experts and influencers so they can rapidly grow their business together.

  • Local Sponsorship Opportunities
    • Sponsoring a local meetups is a way to earn great links and maybe non-Google sources of customers. Phil likes to find local Meetup.com groups that don’t have sponsors with the site search operator. You can add intitle:keyword to the end if you want to find a specific type of meetup – e.g. intitle:photography or intitle:latino.. Check out the query here.

      Phil Rozek is an internationally recognized authority on local SEO and online reviews. Check out his blog.

  • Find dev/test/staging/backup sites
    • At times clients might have dev/test/staging/backup sites indexed by Google, Chris Burgess uses the minus operator and the site: operator to uncover this. This is also a good way to find content that is not on the main site. Check out the query here.

      Chris Burgess is a passionate technology consultant from Melbourne, Australia. He runs the SEO Melbourne meetup and is the WordPress Editor for SitePoint.

  • Recently published .edu Blog Posts
    • Vishnu tells me that he likes to combine advanced search operators and URL modifiers to find backlink opportunities that might otherwise go unnoticed. An example would be to find .edu blog posts about marketing resources from the last year. He used blog search modifier &tbm=blg with secondary modifiers for fetching blog posts tbas=0 then threw in the site: operator and time filter to limit the results to .edu posts published in 2015. Check out the query here.

      Vishnu is an all-round internet marketing specialist with over 7 years of specialisation in SEO and SEM.

  • Discover local marketing experts
    • Alistair uses advance search operators to find local experts who present at meetups and other events. He uses the filetype operator filetype:ppt and the site: operator to restrict the result to .au domains. Check out the query here.

      Alistair is a digital content writer, specializing in copywriting and search engine optimization. He’s currently completing a BFA in Screenwriting.

  • Find where influencers are active
    • Nick uses the &tbs=qdr:w and inurl:operators to find which network his target influencers are most active on. Here is a sample query.

      Nick is a marketing expert at Supple. He is always analyzing marketing reports or investigating emerging trends in digital marketing.

  • Find specific Content on specific Sites
    • If you are trying to place a piece of content, like an infographic or a chart, John-Henry Scherck has an advanced query to find similar articles from a list of sites you want to get placed on. This allows you to quickly find authors who have published similar content. So, if we wanted to get an infographic about sales on Business Insider, Forbes, Inc, Fast Company or Huffington Post, try using this advanced query. He uses a combination of (, AND, OR, site: operators to get this info.
  • Discover new Content by Competitors
    • Ajit often likes to keep a close eye on the competition and what they are doing, using an advanced search to look for new pages on the target domain by excluding the blog content to find new landing pages launched by them. He uses a combination of the -, inurl: and site: operators, this is the query he uses.

      Ajit is an online marketing professional with well over 7 years of experience in on-page and off-page SEO.

  • Discover Indexation Issues
    • You can use multiples of the same sort of variants to verify if different versions of your site are being indexed or not. For example, sites with a mobile subdomain, or both www and non-www versions of the site resolve, you might need to check indexation on each of these using the familiar inurl operator, or negatives/combinations of negatives like this: sample query

This Article was first published (and re printed here) on

Google Search Cheat Sheet

I increased Search Engine Visibility by …%

Search Engines are a way of life and your ability to be viewed will impact your business and sales. So how can you improve your ranking and better compete with the competition? Here are 10 easy ways to improve your site’s visibility and make an immediate impact:

Action 1: Search Engine Verification

First, you need to see if your site is properly interacting with Google, Yahoo and Bing by verifying your site and sitemaps and monitor statistics. Register with Google Webmaster Tools, create an account and upload code to your server for Google to spider. Then create a XML sitemap for all your pages and upload it to your Webmaster Tools account. Then you will be able to monitor pages indexed by Google, indexing errors, what keywords are being found, quantity of incoming links, broken links and much more.Contact me if you need help with this.

Action 2: Identify Your Primary Keywords

It’s good to analyze your keywords and what your customers are actually using to search you. Create a list of all imaginable keywords, ask for additional ones from colleagues, family and friends. You should have a list of at least 50 keywords / phrases. Then run them through a keyword research tool like WordTracker or Google Keyword Tool and select the ones that generate the most number of searches per day.

Action 3: Keyword Rich Content

Now integrate them into your page content. Do not repeat the keywords more than 3 or 4 times on a page. Next, rewrite your page titles, tags and headings with the new keywords. When you create new pages, seed the keywords into your file names.

Action 4: Unique Title and Meta Tags

Variety is good, so do not have the same Meta tags on each page. Vary them per page with new and unique Title and Meta descriptors that mirrors the actual page content. Again, seed them with your new and improved keywords.

 

Action 5: Install and Monitor Analytics

Statistics are the proof of any website’s ability to perform. Install Google Analytics immediately! It’s free and it will provide you with stats on web traffic and great marketing information. You will be able to monitor how visitors are interacting with your site, what pages they visit most, time spent on site, etc. You can then adjust your site to improve its performance.

Action 6: Be Fresh

That doesn’t mean to be rude. New content keeps the search engines returning to your site. By adding fresh content, you are telling the search engine spiders and your customers that you have lots to offer and it is an active and vibrant site worth visiting. And remember to seed the content with those new and improved keywords.

Action 7: Check Internal Links

Linking will significantly affect your search results. Make sure you check all you internal linking so there is nothing broken. Also check how you are linking between your own site pages affects page rank. Again, keywords in link structure are important. Change “click here” to “read more about xyz widget”. Google recognizes the relevance of a keyword-rich link to the content on the linking page.

Action 8: Utilize the Social Media

Social Media will help promote your site and bring in active links / visitors. Start utilizing the social networks like Twitter and Facebook. Whenever you make a blog post, a product announcement, special promotion or publish a newsletter, cross-post your social network. You’ll get more traffic and more incoming links, and more search engine juice.

Action 9: Get Connected

External links are extremely important and will affect your site’s ranking on search engines. The more incoming links to your site the more valued by search engines. They view you as an authority site if you have garnered a significant number of external links. Of course these external links must be quality as well and not spam from link farms.

Action 10: Site Speed

Another critical factor to improve search engine visibility is making sure your site loads quickly, thereby improving its performance. Google can has tools such as Page Speed that can help you diagnose and fix speed issues. A slow loading site will definitely affect Page Rank and number of page views.Test your Speed AND Mobile Friendliness here

Timeline for Results

Continue to be active because your site is a living, breathing entity at least as the search world views it. Continue to work and improve your site by adding new content, monitor your site’s performance, and be willing to put the time into changing or adding to it. Use your webmaster tools and analytics programs regularly.

By following these 10 Action Steps you should see results in 2 months. Why not start today!

If you do not have the patience or technical know-how please contact me and I can assist or advise.

Website Maintenance Types

Website Maintenance including:

Monthly Specials

Add monthly specials to your website in a way that is easy for your customers to view, download or share with others.

Product Catalogue

Adding and removing products as old ones become obsolete and new ones become available. i also offer professional IMAGE OPTIMIZATION for you to keep and for future use.

Media Updates

Adding galleries, video or files to your website in a way that is easy for your customers to view, download or share with others.

Blog Posts

If you’re good at writing regular articles, but have difficulty adding it to the blog section of your WordPress website. We can help layout your blog posts better for maximum exposure.

WordPress Updates

Stop worrying about plugins being out of date, WordPress versions staying current or hackers taking your WordPress website offline. All of these great features are standard WordPress hosting perks.

Regular Updates

Need regular updates, SEO or additional website pages added to your website?
I can help with a few small changes, add custom graphics or a full new custom page layout.

Regular Website Maintenance is Important
  1. Keep Visitors interested
  2. Add new products, services, solutions or features
  3. Maintain your Google rankings
  4. Keep your website working well
  5. Keep up with changing technology
  6. Apply the latest Security Updates

Optimize for Google but also for Bing and Yahoo.

Admittedly, Google seems to be the most used Search Engines,but there are still some Users who prefer to use other Search Engines such as BING, YAHOO, DUCKDUCKGO or other less well known ones.

If you make a Search for your own Domain Name or Relevant Keyword to find your Site in those different Search Engines you will quickly see that your Position in each one will be different.

You might be Nr 1 on GOOGLE but only Nr 7 in YAHOO or Nr 10 in BING. Or you might be Nr 1 on BING but way down on the GOOGLE List.
I ran a short test with my own Website:

On other Search Engines and using other Search Words the Position might be and will be different.

Optimizing for Bing/Yahoo vs. Google

If you’ve decided that it’s time to focus a little more attention on optimizing for Yahoo and Bing, here’s a bit of good news – Yahoo search is powered by Bing, meaning you only end up optimizing for one extra search engine rather than two. Another helpful fact is that Bing and Google’s algorithms are similar in many ways.

For example, optimizing URLs and domain names for keywords and having a large number of high-quality, dofollow backlinks are equally important to Bing/Yahoo and Google.

However, that’s pretty much where the similarities between the two search engines end. As far as the differences, here are the main ones to worry about:

Website Type

While Google focuses on newer, commercial, or popular websites in its results, Bing tends to favor older websites with more official domain names such as .edu or .gov. What does all this mean? It means that Google is quick to offer up socially relevant sites whereas Bing is more likely to provide factually relevant information.

Flash Media

While Google has a hard time figuring out what to do about Flash media, Bing does a great job of indexing it, and offers extra credit for sites that use it.

Local

Local searches on Bing and Google will often have much different results, with Google’s often swaying in favor of larger, more established companies and Bing being more likely to show small businesses. Why? Because when you search for local businesses on Bing, it assumes that you want the most proximal, which isn’t always the big box store in town. Google, however, gives you the most credible, which often is the larger business.

Social

One of the things that sets Bing apart from Google the most is its approach to search by integrating social media. When searching on Bing, if a Facebook friend has recommended or rated the company or product mentioned in the search, the user can see it right away. Google hasn’t quite been able to integrate social media into their searches as well as Bing.

On-Page SEO

Google is much smarter than Bing when it comes to keywords. While Google is far more intuitive about the context of a page, Bing still relies heavily on keywords in page titles, meta tags, and on the page, which means that straightforward, specific keywords are the way to go for Bing SEO.

The Real Reason to Optimize for Bing and Yahoo

If you work with SEO, you know that the most important thing to optimize for isn’t Google, and it’s not Bing or Yahoo either – it’s the visitor. Ranking on the first page of any site is great, but if your site visitors aren’t interested in your website once you’ve drawn them there, then all your hard work was for nothing.

Once you’ve created a great, user-friendly website, you absolutely must optimize it for Google, Bing, and Yahoo so that your potential customers are given the opportunity to discover what you’ve created.
If you do not have the technical know-how nor the time or patience to optimize your Website I can help for a once off low Fee.Please contact me with your Project.

Is your Website Mobile Friendly?

Test here if your Website is Mobile Friendly. This Tool is provided by GOOGLE.
Google recently announced that it will rank websites by mobile friendly criteria.
If your Site is Mobile Friendly it will help in Search Engine Results, if not Mobile Friendly the Ranking will be lower. (according to Google)

Google Gives Mobile-Friendly Sites a Boost in Search Ranking.
As more and more users view websites on mobile devices, Google wants to make it easier to find relevant, mobile-optimized websites. To this end, Google will now use mobile-friendliness as a factor in ranking search results.

To make your website mobile-friendly, Google suggests taking the following steps:

  1. Visit Google’s guide to mobile-friendly sites. This page offers several ways to make your site more mobile-friendly, such as by using software or a third-party developer.
  2. Take Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test(top of this Page) to see how optimized your website is for mobile viewing. You can test a single page on your site or several webpages and see exactly how Google’s own Googlebot views the pages when determining search results.
  3. Use Webmaster Tools to generate a Mobile Usability Report, which helps identify any issues with your website when viewed on a mobile device.

In some Cases it is easy to convert your Site to Mobile Friendly. Contact me if you need some help.

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