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Oodles of Google Tips

How to Maximize the Power of Your Searches

by Traci Vanover

My home page used to be eBay, but all that changed a few years ago when I discovered how easily I could get my news fix online. That's when I changed my home page to Google, and like many business owners, I now find myself searching there dozens of times each day. From marketing statistics to the local pizza joint's telephone number, GoogleŽ has made finding everyday information a breeze.

This may surprise you, but I would venture a guess that you aren't using Google to its fullest potential. You may say you know how to find everything you need, but in this instance, what you don't know may be hurting you (or at least limiting your search results).

Here is a quick list you may want to print out and keep handy. Your Googling may never be the same again.

  It isn't necessary to use AND. "And" is automatically assumed, and need not be between your search criteria.

 Find pages that include at least one of your terms by adding the word "OR" (in uppercase only) between your search criteria.
              
Peanut Butter OR Jelly.

 Use the minus sign (-) in front of a word to exclude. Can be used to exclude results from specific sites as well.
               Small Business Grants -entrepreneur.com

 To search a specific phrase, place it in quotes.
             
 "guerrilla publicity"

 To search for similar words or concepts, use the tilde (~).
               ~ Angel Investors

 To search for words in a web page's title, use "allintitle" or "intitle".
               allintitle:small business consulting

 To search a specific file format, list the file type, preceded by a colon and "filetype".   ROI calculator:filetype:xls

 Use an asterisk (*) to account as a placeholder for a word/character space.     * inventory software

 Definitions may be obtained by adding "define:" before the word you would like defined.    define:blue chip stocks

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Traci Hayner Vanover, the Promo DivaŽ, provides design, marketing and PR services to small businesses, authors, and artisans in a number of disciplines.
 

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