Monday, January 6, 2014

Using Search Operators: Excluding Certain Queries/Sites from Search Results (Google, Yahoo!, and Bing)

Sometimes, we need to manually filter and narrow down the things we're looking for on the internet.
This is a simple trick to optimize our search queries/terms on search engines : Google, Yahoo!, and Bing.

To exclude a particular query  (or queries) :
  • Use minus sign ( - ), such as : red flower -rose ( search for red flower, exclude a word, rose )
  • For multiple queries : red flower -rose -shipping -poem ( search for red flower, exclude 3 words )

To exclude a particular website (or websites) :
  • Excluding one website :
    flying monkey with jet pack is excluded )
  • Excluding multiple sites :
    flying monkey with jet pack ( two sites are excluded )

In conclusion, if you ALWAYS see some websites you hate* appearing on every search term you typed on either Google, Yahoo!, or Bing, you can use the exclusion operator there, the minus ( - ), combined with site. 
I always use this method to narrow down stuffs. And/or avoiding some bad URL addresses I stumbled upon earlier.

Note :
There are PLENTY of "funky" sites which automatically generate keywords. But as I observed, those URLs appearances have been reduced significantly, since all of those search engines are super advancing their filtering algorithms. But, if you keep on seeing those sites, cluttering the real results, you can implement the exclusion method above.

Google, Yahoo! ( and Bing ) will return different results from each other. They have their own crawler bots and systems.

There are other operators you can use. Check out these links :
  • Search Operators at Google
  • Effective Searches at Yahoo!
  • Advanced Operator Reference at Bing

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