How can I use this? Power searching techniques in Google
Government websites can be difficult to navigate. You can use the power of Google to data mine into government websites.
One of the most powerful search functions is Google’s site search. You can limit your search to just information from a specific domain or website using the Google command site:. For example, you can search for Canadian government website and content by searching site:. gc.ca or British Columbian government content by searching site:.gov.bc.ca.
You can also combine phrases while using site:, as shown on the right. Note that the Boolean Operator 'AND' is implied in the search, meaning Google will look for pages that are in the specified web site containing both of the search phrases.
Another strategy for limiting your results is to force the word or phrase to be in the title of the document. For example, this search finds documents on BC government websites which have the phrase “food security” in the title (site:.gov.bc.ca intitle:"food security").
Advanced search operators give you more control over what results Google returns:
|“Search a phrase”||Forces the specific word order||"This phrase only please"|
|"Word"||Quotation marks around a word turns off synonyms & spell checking||"kitten"|
|site:||searches a particular website (ubc.ca) or domain (.ca)||site:gc.ca|
|filetype:||Searches for a particular filetype||filetype:pdf|
|intitle:||Searches only in the title||intitle:"climate change"|
For an excellent resource on searching with Google see the Google Advanced Power Searching page.