Friday, December 18, 2009

Advanced Search Queries in Google

Google is making things easier for you to search. Apparently they continuously test the home page (some 41 shades of blue have been tested according to Marissa Mayer) and also this year the search box has been widened, and larger font is used when you type. More recently they've introduced a "fade-in" background (which I'll be honest is a bit odd, but there you go) so as to not distract from the already minimilistic page.

Computer Screen - Barcelona SEO Blog

The majority of people simply type their query in the search box or toolbar, and then google even cleverly suggests the end of the query for you - all to make things easier. However, it can still take a bit of refining before you satify your needs. This is where the advanced paramenters can come in handy. There are a few extra things you can type into the search box to refine your search. Anyone familiar with Google's Adwords will probably know.

For example, using [] to bracket your search gives a broad match to the keywords. It's kind of like the same words you type with no extra symbols before or after, but can often change if you compare both.

Using "" around your search means you want an exact match of the keywords in that order. You can also use the - sign to denote negative keywords you want google to remove from the search results. The minus sign always needs to have a space before and be joined to the word, like this: "Turkey Recipies -Christmas" if you want some great recipies for cooking turkey but not a christmas turkey!! This is good if you know exactly what you're looking for, but can sometimes omit results. Think if you type "George Bush" into google, it won't display any pages where "George W Bush" appears. Get it?

If you want to search a particular website for information, then you can add site: to the query. For example if you want to see news about how Bing is doing in the UK, you can type Bing into the search box, and you'll be only given results from the BBC website. Simiarly, if you only want websites from the UK, then you can type or government pages type and so on.

The * key is a great little tool to use. This is what google calls a "wild card" and will basically fill in the blank for you if you don't know the word you're looking for. Sounds daft? Well, think of something like a football score. If you know the teams playing or who played, then you could type in FC Barcelona * Bayern Munich * which will remind you that the score was 4-0 to Barcelona.

There are more additions to your search query terms you may need to know for SEO, so I might touch on a few more of those in another post, but I think these are a good introduction for the moment. If you're not happy with your website's rankings in the Search Engines, then contact me at Barcelona SEO for a chat. Or if you'd like some one-to-one SEO Training in Barcelona, then I can also help.

No comments: