16 Google Hacks You Need to Start Using Now

Title of article about Google Hacks

Aw, the ol’ mighty Google.

It’s the search engine of choice for many of us today. And with so many helpful features it’s easy to see why. With that, I’ve put together this article with some of my best tips and tricks for using it more efficiently. Read on to learn more about some of the best tips, tricks, short cuts, timesavers and hacks for Google.

Narrow Your Search by Excluding Search Terms

Say you want to do a search for jaguars. Your first few results might yield the car company and not the animal.

Screenshot of Google search for Jaguar

To remove cars from your results you can exclude them by putting a minus (-) in front of it like this:

Jaguar -car

Screenshot of Google Search of Jaguar

Set a Timer

Whether it’s for cooking, exercising or putting your child in a timeout Google has a timer you can set that will alert you once it reaches zero. Just type in timer to get started.

Screenshot of Google Timer

Book a Flight

Going somewhere?

Type in flight to bring up the flight search box then type in your details such as where you are departing from, where you are going and the dates. Then press enter to get a comparison of a number of different airlines prices and times.

Explore the Galaxy and Beyond

This one is really cool. You can explore the universe with google.com/sky. You can also see mapping of the Moon and Mars at google.com/moon and google.com/mars respectively.

Get Times for Sunrise and Sunset

Type in either sunrise or sunset to get times.

Search For Your Public IP Address

Type in what is my ip address to view yours.

Get Language Translation

You can type in translate to bring up a translation feature.

Screenshot of Google Language Translation Feature

Get Time Zone Information

Do you need to make a long distance phone call but you’re not sure if the recipient will be up yet?

Check the time zone by typing the name of the city followed by the word time (ex. Vancouver time).

Get Measurement Conversions

Quick, how many inches are in a metre?

It’s easy to find this out by typing in measurement conversion to get a feature that can convert imperial measurements to the metric system and vice versa. It also can convert weight, speed, temperature and volume among many others.

Screenshot of Google Measurement Conversion feature

Use a Calculator

Simply type in calculator to bring up this function.

Get the Weather

Type in the name of your city and the word weather (ex Halifax Weather) to get a forecast for today and the upcoming week.

Use the Dictionary

Does the word independent end with -ent or -ant?

I bet you just looked back at how I spelled it, didn’t you.

Use the dictionary to find out this and more by typing dictionary then type in your best guess of the word. You will then get a the correct spelling plus a definition.

Screenshot of Google Dictionary Feature

Get Sport Scores

Keep up to date with your favourite teams by typing in the league name plus the word scores (ex NBA scores) to see real time scores.

Go Old School

By typing in Google in 1998 you can see how it looked when it was first started.

Screenshot of Google in 1998

Do a Barrell Roll

Here’s another fun Easter egg. Type in Do a barrell roll to make your browser screen do a 360° spin.

Do a Search Using Placeholders

If you are doing a search and can only remember a few words you can use an asterisk (*) as a placeholder. Here’s an example, say I’m looking up the lyrics to a song and can only remember a few words from it. My search would look like this:

You can’t * get * * want lyrics

Force Google to Show You the Publishing Dates

One of my most used Google hacks is this one which makes Google display the date for a result. So no more doing a search, clicking on the result reading the site or article and then discovering you’ve wasted time because the information is out of date.

Now you can see the date stamp by adding this snippet at the end of the URL of the search result:

        &as_qdr=y15

So for example, say you are searching for Best Summer Cottages in Nova Scotia, you would type in your query, press enter and then Google would displays the results. The URL would look something like this:

Screenshot of URL

You then add the snippet of &as_qdr=y15 to the end of the URL:

Screenshot of URL

Then press enter and voila, the results show the date.

Google Search

Bonus

Want to search for information on a image you have? You can upload it to Google Images and they will provide details on where the image is found on the web (if you are looking for free images to use on your website or social media channels then check out my article 2 of the Best Websites for Free Photos.)

Conclusion

There are certainly many more tips, tricks and hacks out there. What are some others you know? Leave your comments below.

And if you need further help visit Google’s support page.

________________________

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Scott Trites is a Social Media Consultant and Owner of Knockout Social Media

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