Google is no longer just a trendy title, especially in an ever-changing digital world. The term has become synonymous with an Internet search and is used so often that it was added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2006. In the workplace a quick Google search can help you get your job done, when it comes to certain research or solutions.
Most casual Internet surfers utilize Google by typing in a few words in the search bar and hope what they’re looking for pops up. They can waste precious time if what they are looking for isn’t obvious or popular.
Computer whizzes can giggle at a frustrated basic searcher’s expense. Admittedly, I sometimes sarcastically send a pre-searched link from www.letmegooglethatforyou.com to show how easy a search can be if you know how to really use Google.
Here are a few quick tips to help you transform from a hapless Internet newbie, to an unstoppable information-gathering wizard, or at least a knowledgeable Google searcher with a lot more time to spare.
Narrow Your Search
Google will search for the exact phrases inside quotation marks. If you were looking for information about temporary work, rather than typing the words temporary work into the search bar, try putting the words in quotation marks.
Example search: “temporary work”
Using the plus and minus signs will also help narrow your search. Add them to words without a space in front of them to include or exclude specific words from your search.
Example search: “temporary employment” +retail
Search for File Types
There is also a wealth of information not contained on online websites. A lot of info can be found in pdf documents, word files, powerpoint slideshows, etc. You can hunt for these by typing in filetype: into the search bar. When downloading files though, always be sure to avoid suspicious websites that might be harmful to your computer.
Example search: “interview etiquette” filetype:pdf
Search within Websites
If you’ve located a website you believe contains the information you need, but can’t wade through pages and pages of information, try using Google to search within the site. Simply add site: followed by your website link into the Google search.
Example search: cover letters site: http://blog.expresspros.com/
Use OR to Replace Keywords
By putting the word or between two words, Google will interchange those two keywords in your search.
Example search: How to write a résumé or cover letter
Don’t Let Inactive Websites Stop You
Occasionally, webpages might crash or go out of service. If the information you are looking for is located on an inactive website, try clicking the cached link next to the Google link. This accesses the stored web cache
Use Google as your Toolbox
Need to check your calculations or forgot a unit conversion? Google has you covered. Type in the information you need into the search bar and Google will handle the rest.
Do you need to find the exchange rate from US dollars to the Euro? There is a converter built into Google.
Example search: 10 usd to euro
Making something for an office luncheon and can’t figure out the recipe? Google can make the conversion for you.
Example search: tablespoons to “2 cups”
Google can even tell you the exact time in any time zone.
Example search: time Surfers Paradise, Australia
If you need to check your calculations and can’t find a calculator, just use Google.
Example search: 5*20=
Knowing how to find the information you need can be indispensable to your current position or your job search. Being able to find or gather information quickly can be just as important as recalling it from memory.
With such a powerful tool like Google at your fingertips, knowing the right shortcuts can make life so much easier and save your invaluable time. Soon enough, you can even Google how to surf the web like an expert on your own and avoid being left in an analog world.