Google has had such an effect on the internet, and even our lives that it's become a verb. We no longer search for things, we Google them, right? Given it's so commonly used, it's surprising how few people know how to use it effectively.

For example, there's no need to be as polite as this grandmother!

Type Simply (Simply Type!)

Did you know that Google search almost always ignores case? Even punctuation? It will only occasionally prioritise some results over others when punctuation/case is matched exactly!

Google will also only very weakly consider words like "the" and "a" (Here's a list), so rather than typing "That cat video where it makes a noise like a human baby" try "cat video sound human baby".

Exact Phrase Search

If you want to search for an exact quote or phrase, enclose it in "quotation marks". This can be particularly useful if you want to find an article, email, song lyrics or anything you've found before that you know a short passage from. Otherwise Google might find other pages that are more commonly searched for with your words in a different order.

Note however that the search will likely still ignore some of the more simple words, capitalisation and punctuation in your search, so you can still shorten your search term if you'd like!

Exclude Results You Don't Want

I'd love some kofta or yalanchi tonight, have a particular hankering for it actually! Unfortunately, my local Armenian Restaurant is called "Kardashian's", and I can't sift through all the nonsense about some American family online to get to the damn menu/phone number I need.

Thankfully, I can just search for:

Unfortunately, even my best efforts still brought up THAT family, but far more useful results anyway!

Google with not show any pages that contain the words that follow the hyphen. Handy!

Can't Think of the Right Word?

If I want an idea for a recipe to make something sweet, but want to include dessert, sweets, pudding, cake etc etc, I needn't type them, or even know all of them, I just tell Google to do the work for me! A bit like:

Google will find Coffee Cake, Coffee Pudding etc

Not Sure of the Exact Date/Range?

If you're anything like me, you don't mind seeing a film's rebooted version, but you'd really rather know where it comes from originally! It's just so annoying when you want to find the original "Total Recall", but all you can find are references to the new version. Where's my Arnie!?!

Thankfully, you can just search for something like:

In this case, Google will look for results for Total Recall 1980, Total Recall 1981, Total Recall 1982 etc, and ignore results after 1999. This applies for all sorts of ranges, dates, currency or just numbers in general.


There are plenty of other Google tricks, and they usually work everywhere you find that familiar logo (including Gmail, Google Calendar, Classroom etc). If you want to find those extra tips and tricks... You could Google them?

Hopefully you'll save some time the next time you're searching the web!