You know how to Google like the best of them right? Perhaps not, there are several tricks you can use to narrow your search so you get the results you desire. We recently read a couple articles on the websites How-To Geek and the Atlantic that highlighted some methods to do this. We wanted to share a few that we thought were the most helpful.
Operators are key
If you are trying to find very specific information through a Google search, operators are the most useful way to find what you are looking for. The example that the How-To Geek site used is as follows. Say a user wants to find stories only published by the New York Times concerning college test scores. That is very specific and seems like it would take a lot of digging. Not if you utilize operators. By inserting the operator “site:” in front of the words “nytimes.com,” Google will only search in that site. Then by adding quotation marks around exact phrases they are looking for, in this case “test scores,” Google will search for that exact phrase only. If the user desires to add a date range, they can add 2008..2010 and it will narrow the search further.
Google Scholar is another great way to narrow search results. It prompts Google to only search academic and scholarly work, which would be great for research papers. To do this you can employ operators. For example, if you are looking for a paper written by Dr. Breit about the evolution of coding languages, you would input the operator “author:” in front of “Breit” followed by the phrase “evolution of coding languages” into Google Scholar.
“Control F” is a way to search within your search results. For example, perhaps you are searching for a new outfit to wear to a holiday party. After searching for “party dress” you can hold control on your keyboard and click “F.” A small search bar will pop up in the top or bottom of your screen and in it you can search your results by typing “pink” or “long” to further narrow your search.