Search operators: Google Chrome and Firefox plugin

tl;dr – we’ve made a browser extension for Chrome and Firefox to make using search operators a little bit faster.

Get the Chrome version here.

Get the Firefox version here.

What are search operators?

Search operators are commands or characters that can be added to a text search to retrieve more specific information. All search engines use operators in some form – and some useful commands work in Bing and not Google, or vice versa.

The most useful Google search operators

Note: don’t put spaces between the operator and search term or it won’t work.

Google search operators

  1. Search a specific website – add site: to the beginning of your search to find only pages on that domain e.g. will only return webpages on this site. Use this to see how many pages you have indexed. You can also use a site: search to find URLs on a specific subdomain.
  2. Add inurl: to a site: search to find pages of a specific type – e.g. inurl:http://www. will return pages in Google’s index that aren’t using the HTTPS protocol like the rest of the website.
  3. Add –www. to your site:search to see all the subdomains Google has in its index (or if you’ve accidently indexed your staging site, for example). This doesn’t always work.
  4. Add inurl: to the beginning of your search to see if the exact page is indexed by Google.
  5. Add filetype: to your site: search to see all indexed pages of a specific filetype – useful to see all the PDFs you have indexed (e.g. filetype:pdf) – remember, PDFs are evil.
  6. Put your search inside quotation marks – “like this” – if you want to see results for the exact term with no missing words. You should know this because it’s taught in primary schools – but in the world of SEO it can be useful to copy/paste a few lines of text from a page you suspect of being duplicated into Google with quotation marks to see all the instances of those exact sentences. Usually makes for a nice, visual way to get your teams to actually do something about it.
  7. An asterisk is a wildcard – you might want to know “who is the * seo in the world”, where * can be everything from best to worst.
  8. Theoretically related: will show you similar sites, so will show a list of our competitors – it doesn’t seem to be ranked in any order though.

Google has published a “full” list of its search operators here but Dr. Pete has a much better one.

Our favourite Bing search operator

Use linkfromdomain: to see all the websites your domain links to. Apparently links to 100,000 websites, which we should probably do something about…but really useful if you suspect a blog of selling links and you want to know who to.

That’s a lot of typing

We know. So we made a Chrome and Firefox browser extension – now you can use some of our favourite Google search operators at the touch of a button.

Get the Chrome version here.

Get the Firefox version here.

Any problems – or if you desperately want a Microsoft Edge version – let us know.

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