Google Search Tips & Tricks


Google is a powerful search engine, and knowing how to use it effectively can save you time and lead to better search results. Here are some tips and tricks:

  1. Use Quotation Marks: If you’re looking for an exact phrase, put it in quotation marks. This will tell Google to search for the exact phrase rather than each word individually. For example, “climate change effects.”
  2. Use a Hyphen to Exclude Words: You can use a hyphen (-) before a word to exclude it from your search results. For example, if you’re searching for jaguars but not the car, you can search for “jaguars -car”.
  3. Use the Asterisk as a Wildcard: If you’re trying to find a specific phrase but can’t remember a particular word, you can use an asterisk (*) as a placeholder. For example, “a * saved is a * earned”.
  4. Search Within a Specific Site: If you want to search within a specific website, you can use the “site:” operator followed by the website URL. For example, “ artificial intelligence”.
  5. Search for Related Sites: If you’ve found a website you like and want to find similar sites, use the “related:” operator followed by the website URL. For example, “”.                                   
  6. Use the OR Operator: You can use the OR operator (the OR must be in capital letters) to search for pages that might use one of several words. For example, “world cup location 2022 OR 2026”.    
  7. Using the AND operater: Files that includ both the words. For example, cat AND dog; results will include the word cat and the word dog.                           
  8. Search for a Specific File Type: If you’re looking for a specific type of file, like a PDF, you can use the “filetype:” operator. For example, “climate change filetype:pdf”.
  9. Search Between Numbers: If you’re looking for information within a range of numbers, like dates or prices, you can use two periods (..) without spaces. For example, “Olympics 1980..2000”.                   
  10. Define a Word: You can quickly look up the definition of a word by typing “define:” followed by the word. For example, “define:philosophy”.  
  11. Use Calculator or Converter: Google can be used as a calculator or a unit and currency converter. Simply type the calculation or conversion into the search bar. For example, “100 USD to EUR” or “20 km in miles”.                            
  12. Track Flights: You can track flights by typing the airline and flight number into the search bar.             
  13. Use Google as a Timer: Just type “set timer” followed by the amount of time.                                                   
  14. Using the “from” operator – These files are shared by a person, use, from: and their email address (with no spaces.) For example,                  
  15. Using the “to” operator – These are filed shared with a person, use to: and their email address (with no spaces.) For example

 We know that Google is a huge tool so here’s a few more!

  1. Reverse Image Search: You can upload an image or provide an image URL to Google Images to find similar images or the origin of the image. Go to Google Images, click on the camera icon in the search bar, and upload your image or paste the image URL (we have used this MANY times!!).
  2. Search by Voice: Click the microphone icon in the Google search bar to search by voice.
  3. Use “AT” to Compare: You can compare almost anything by using the “vs” operator. For example, “apples vs oranges”.
  4. Weather: You can quickly find the weather for any location by typing “weather” followed by the location. For example, “weather Gold Coast”.
  5. Movie Showtimes: Find movie times by searching the name of the movie and then “showtimes”.
  6. Search for Music: Type the band or artist name followed by “songs” to see a list of their songs. For example, “The Beatles songs”.
  7. Use “Around” for Proximity Searches: If you want to find pages where two words are close to each other, use “AROUND” and a number representing the maximum words between your search terms. For example, “apple AROUND(3) phone” will prioritise pages where the word “apple” is within 3 words of “phone”.
  8. Public Data: Google search can also provide public data, like population or unemployment rates. For example, “unemployment rate Australia”.
  9. Check the Time: Type “time” followed by the name of the city to see the current local time. For example, “time Gold Coast”.
  10. Sport Scores and Schedules: Type in the name of the team to find the score of their latest game or their schedule. For example, “Los Angeles Lakers”.
  11. Books Authored: You can quickly find books written by an author by typing “books by” followed by the author’s name.
  12. Google in 1998: For a bit of fun, type “Google in 1998” and see how Google used to look.

Remember to use these responsibly, and to respect digital rights and privacy. Happy searching!

Pip Meecham

Systems and Operations Specialist & Founder of ProjectBox