SEO takes a time to show the results.
In order to get the fast result, you need to do work faster and save as much as time is possible.
Wouldn’t it be great if you know some cool ‘hacks’ that cut down the time you spend doing time taking SEO processes?
Hacks such as advanced search operators.
Why advanced search operators?
Because of Google – every SEO should know how to find the best possible SERP from Google.
I’ve seen people spending their lots of time to find things on Google.
…and you know what the funny part is?
Most of them hardly find the things that they were looking for.
This is where search operators come to help; using them you can get better search results with less time.
Even though you’re not doing an SEO, still these search operators will help you in your everyday work.
What are search operators?
According to Google its symbols or words in your search to make your search results more precise.
Search operators are nothing but a bunch of codes that Google understands and provide the results according to them.
When you are using search operators, you are actually asking Google for specific results.
Therefore, you only get the results that you need, instead of getting pages and pages of unrelated results.
Let’s see how search operators work and how you can use them for your own good.
#1. Show me the exact results
Let’s say you are looking for some PDF about to piano tutorial.
You might go to the Google and search something like “flute lessons PDF” and the result be like:
You can see the results aren’t that you had expected.
The second and fourth position results are not something that you were looking for.
The second result doesn’t even have the PDF word, whereas, the fourth result missing the flute lessons.
It means Google is not taking your search seriously, and to get the specific result you should be specific.
Tell Google to return the specific result using your search string between the quotation (” “).
Let’s take the same search query ‘flute lessons PDF’ again but this time using quotation and see what happens.
See Google only show the result which has words ‘flute lessons PDF.’
#2. Exclude words you don’t want
You may have noticed that sometimes Google shows the results that you don’t need.
Let’s say you are doing an advanced search to learn more about copy-writing, but the results you get are something like this:
In this case, you can use a short dash (-) to eliminate words from the results that you don’t want. You could try excluding the word “tips.”
Google won’t add the term TIPS in the result when you use ( -) search operator.
#3. Use an OR operator
It happens when you are not clear about your search and want to show two options either this or that.
In this case, you can use OR command, it tells Google either show result of either A or B. Write capital OR between the keywords you want the result for.
You can also use the pipe ( | ) instead of OR to search the result.
#4. Use OR command to find accurate result
The OR commands can be used with other search operators as well such as with first operators we talked about.
You can use combine when you want to use an OR search with specific phrases:
The results you will get include either the exact phrase “content marketing” or “email marketing.”
#5. Use wildcard to get more results
If you need more matches for your search string you can use wildcard search operator that is represented by an asterisk (*).
All you need to do is, place the wildcard in a phrase, and the search engine will provide you all the variations of that phrase.
Let’s say you want the result for Cricket and Football. In that case, you can use either an ampersand (&) or an asterisk (*).
…and you will get the result for both of your queries.
Search string will look like this:
#6. Include phrases
Using (+) sign after your main search query will add the additional words in your search results.
If is useful when you are searching for a specific thing but also want to include another keyword in it.
#7. Use AROUND(X) operator
I can bet you have never used this search operator before. In fact, very people know about it.
Using this operator, you will get the results where your search terms are close to each other.
The X means is how many words can separate the two terms.
Suppose you are using it for this query:
The result you’ll get be where “event marketing” and “template” are within 8 words of each other.
It’s useful when you want a result that connected with two words.
#8. Find synonyms
Looking for synonyms for your search query?
Use the operator tilde (~) before the word, you’ll get results with synonyms for that word.
Therefore, “event ~ideas” would give synonyms like “concepts.”
#9. Search specific sites
Liked a site and now want more results from that? Google’s site operator is what can help you to get the desired result.
Type site: followed by the name of the site you want to search.
The core reason behind using this operator is to know how many pages of that site are indexed in the search engine which can be useful for SEO purpose.
#10. Search related sites
Most often people like a site and wish if they could find other sites similar to that.
Well, now it can happen using the related search operator. All you need to do is type related: and then the name of the site you want result for:
And Google will reward you more sites in the same niche.
#11. Get info about certain site
Sometimes you need additional information about a specific website, in that case, you can use info operator.
Simply put the info: before a URL, and it’ll get you different types of information about any site:
#12. View cached versions
Sometimes you might want to see how a site would be looking earlier that when Google have crawled that?
Well, Google let know you about that using cached search operator.
#13. Look for the keywords in page titles
Finding competitor’s keywords is one of the major tasks for effective SEO competitor’s analysis.
By using the ‘intitle:’ operator you’ll get the results that contain the specified keyword in the page title.
Simply put any keyword after the operator see what happens next will amaze you.
#14. Find keywords in URLs
Most of the time we look for something special but don’t know how exactly to find those result in the Google.
That’s where inurl: operator comes handy, it brings you results which contain your desired keyword in the URL.
#15. Find results around a specific location
Location based search would be quite helpful for those who are doing local SEO.
With loc: operator you can limit your search results around one geographical place.
Simply use the loc: operator along with the place you want search for.
Now we have reached the end and I just showed you 15 easy but powerful search operators that you can use to enhance your productivity while doing Google search for things.
Google could be your best buddy if you know how to use it right, it even can boost your SEO efforts by doing less.
The search operators I introduced you are 100% free they why don’t use it for your SEO purpose.
Let me know what you think about this article.
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