Web Smart Search Tricks

Woman with iPhone

Find It Faster on the Web

Here are 3 easy tricks for better web searching. Learn these skills in a snap and start finding what you need faster on the web.

Quotation marks

Use quotation marks ("") around a phrase of two or more words so that the search engine will search for the whole phrase exactly as you entered it. This can be helpful for finding things like a quote or a poem that you only know in part or for finding other online sources that have included the same phrase.

Screenshot of a Google search for a quote.

Minus sign

In search engine language the minus sign (-) means NOT. It is telling the search engine that it must exclude a word. Use the minus sign in front of a word to eliminate it from your search results.

Screenshot of a Google search using the minus operator.


Copy and paste

Sometimes copying and pasting a key sentence or two into a search box will be the winning strategy. By doing this you will shrink down your search results drastically so that you find the most relevant matches. Try this when you are researching a medical report or text from a book, speech, or other document.

Here's an example of a search for some text from JFK's "We Choose To Go To The Moon" speech:

JFK Moon Speech via a Google search