Do you know how to Google? Here are 15 nifty and little-known ways to impress your clients, check out your competitors or enrich your own personal searches on the Web’s most powerful search engine.
1. Got competitors? Reveal their identities by clicking the “GoogleScout” button from your own Web site. Google will display links to your listed competitors’ Web pages through this feature. The button can be downloaded from Google tools at Google.com.
2. Search keywords within a specific Web site. For example, type “site: www.realtor.com Austin” into the Google search bar and you’ll get a direct link to the Austin, Texas, page of Realtor.com.
3. Need directions to a property address? Get a map by typing the address into Google without commas. For example, enter “430 N Michigan Ave Chicago” and you’ll get links to street maps of the National Association of Realtors’ headquarters.
4. Search for file types. If you’re looking for a PDF file with “housing” in the title, type “Housing filetype:pdf” in the Google search bar. You can use the same function to find Excel spreadsheets (“filename:xls”) and other file types.
5. Need a stock price quotes for Homestore, Freddie Mac or Bank of America? Simply enter the ticker symbol (e.g., HOMS, FRE or BAC) in the Google search box and a direct link to the corporation’s daily stock quote will appear at the top of search results.
6. Google Viewer. The newest addition to Google Labs is in test mode, but it will allow users to view search results as scrolling Web page images.
7. Google glossary. This tool recognizes “NAR” only as the National Association of Rocketry, National Architecture Review, Naval Air Representative, Network Area Representive or No Action Required. However, it does distinguish a Realtor as a member of NAR.
8. Google voice search. Call (650) 318-0165, then speak your search query when you’re prompted to do so. Click the link provided on the Google Voice Search page and your search results will appear.
9. Search by location. Type your search terms in the first box and specify the location or ZIP code in second box. This function could be a great tool for home shoppers.
10. Web quotes. This function enables users to view search results with quotes about them from other Web sites. Try it and you’ll find out where your Web site has been mentioned.
11. Try Froogle.com if you’re in the mood to click and shop. Search for products or services by category or keyword.
12. Child protection. If young eyes are peering into your search zone, activate Google’s “Safe Search” option under “preferences.” The feature blocks pages containing explicit sexual content from appearing in search results.
13. Want to impress the office clown? Turn your Google text into Elmer Fudd lingo. Click on “preferences,” select “Display Google tips and messages in Elmer Fudd.” Save, return to results and you will notice the “Sponsowed Winks” at the top and right side of the search results pages. Try a new “seawch,” change your “pwefewences,” “wangwage toows” or read a few “seawch tips–uh-hah-hah-hah!”
14. Find pictures of yourself and other local Realtors online by using Google’s “Images” tab. Type “Your town+Realtor” and see whether your mug appears.
15. Cut through the whole results page process by typing your keyword in the search box, then clicking the “I’m feeling lucky” button on Google.com.
Not satisfied with the Google results? Try these non-Google-owned “google-isms”:
1. TouchGraph has devised a Web site that is a graphic representation of Google. Type your Web address and you’ll see which Web sites are connected to yours. (This one is kind of like the “Six moves to Kevin Bacon” game.)
2. Google Mirror, created by Alltooflat.com is a working mirror image of Google.com. Be careful–you will have to enter your search terms backwards!
3. Scroogle.org enables Web users to see the search results that appeared for a keyword prior to Google’s latest page ranking changes.
4. Googlefight.com enables searchers to pit one keyword term against another and find out which word is used more frequently in Google searches.
Want more? Check out Googleism.com.
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