Web Search Pacific Newsletter

Making Google New Again

For most people, searching Google is like eating breakfast. It’s what you do first. You want it to be predictable and satisfying. It doesn’t require a lot of thought, and you can even do it while you are running errands or talking with someone on the phone. And that makes it easy for info pros to get into routines when searching Google.

Here are a few tips to “de-routinize” your Google searching so that, when you need more than last night’s sports scores or today’s stock market price, you will be able to get in-depth results from Google.

  • Switch the order of your words. The same search terms in different order result in different search results. For a dramatic example, compare the number of results when you search for CARBON NEUTRAL PRINTER and when you search for PRINTER CARBON NEUTRAL. When I tested it, I saw 3,370,000 results for the first search and only 211,000 for the second search – even though I used the exact same words for the two searches.
  • Consider limiting your searches to the past 12 months. To add a date-limitation to your search, look for the “Search Tools” link just above the search results. Click that link, then the “Any time” link and you will be able to specify a date range, including past year. Compare the results of a search with and without the date range; you may be surprised at the lack of overlap between the two search results.
  • Use Advanced Search when you want to fine-tune your query. The Advanced Search link has become harder and harder to find, and it varies from site to site. In regular web search results and Google Image results, you click a small gear icon on the right side of the search results screen to get to the Advanced Search page (or go directly to google.com.au/advanced_search or google.co.nz/advanced_search). If, however, you are searching Google News or Google Scholar, you have to click on the small triangle on the right side of the search box.

For those days when your usual searching doesn’t get you what you want, consider these approaches for fine-tuning your Google search.

Web Search Pacific is coming back to New Zealand!

Christchurch: Friday 24th May – one day only
Wellington: Monday 27th and Tuesday 28th May – two days
Auckland: Monday 30th and 31st May – two days

Go to websearchpacific.com for more information or to register for the all-new NZ program!

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