Search functions like filters, topic searches and regular site searches can help you find relevant content, but they often don’t surface the information you need as fast as you’d like. In fact, many users experience so much frustration with search that they give up and look for information elsewhere.
If you’re like most people, you probably spend at least some time each day looking for information on the internet.
That means you’re probably also frustrated by how difficult it is to find the specific thing you’re searching for.
While it’s nice to have so many different places to turn for answers, when you’re looking for specific information, you don’t want to have to sift through myriad options.
To make sure that you get the information you need as fast as possible, Google has put a lot of thought into the different search functions that they offer.
What is a Search Function?
Search functions are the different ways that you can search Google. They include filters, search terms, topic suggestions, image search, and actionable intelligence.
Some of these search functions function similarly, while others function differently. For example, images can become stock or Flickr images, but topic suggestions don’t have that option. Some search functions are located within the site, while others are external to the site.
This guide will cover the ins and outs of each of these search functions, including how to use them, what they’re good for, and when you might want to avoid using them.
A filter is a search operator that allows you to narrow down the search results. There are currently 6 different types of filters that you can use. They are:
- Free Text
- Time Range
A search term is just what it sounds like – a word or words that you’re looking for. You can enter a single search term, or combine it with Boolean operators like and, or, and not.
There are a few different search term types:
- Boolean Operators
- Refined Search Terms
This function is only available for users in the U.S., Canada, UK, Australia, and New Zealand. It’s best used for finding positive and negative comments on your posts and pages.
This is one of my favorite features. It works like a human book club, bringing you the most interesting content related to your topics of interest.
This is another one of my favorite features! With Google’s image search, you can go directly to an image rather than having to first search for it in a search bar.
This is a tool designed to help you make decisions. It ranks search results based on how many times a specific piece of content has been clicked on.
There are a lot of search functions available on Google, and they all have different purposes. This can make them seem a little overwhelming. Luckily, we’ve created a guide that highlights each function and explains how it can help you.