If you only use Google to perform your conventional search, you don’t know what you might be missing. Google is far from being just a search engine, providing other services apart from the main web search. Here you will see 5 extra features that you can take advantage from this giant of the internet. Remember that you can use these directly from you address bar, as long as you have Google set as the default search engine for your browser.

#5 Advanced Search Options

google search optionsThis seems pretty obvious, but you might be surprised about how many people overlook these useful options from their searches. After you perform a search, a couple of options is available for every entry of the page, depending on the search you performed.

  • Cached – You can visit a stored version of the page from the Google services, useful when the page you wanted to visit is not available on its server anymore.
  • Similar – Expand your search by showing similar results from the referenced page. Very appropriate when looking for certain topics well-covered in the page of reference.
  • Translate this page – It translate the page to your target language, according to the set location.

google search toolsYou can access additional operations from the “Search tools” menu item, and be able to restrict your search by date, ranging from the last year to just the last hour, which might be handy when looking for recent news and articles about a certain subject. Other options include country, language and location. There are other appropriate access locations that not many people know about, like your search history.

[Google Search Help] [Google Advanced Search]

#4 Advanced Image Search

Google images helps to finding decent images for content reading and writing, but it has a lot more to offer under the surface with this service. By performing an advanced image search, you can be more specific about the target images you’re looking for, like size, aspect ratio, format and even usage license. Image searches are also very flexible for specific purposes when it comes to keywords usage, like searching with “engineering flowchart” or “marketing infographics” for something more specific.

You can also use the “Search by image” feature from Google Images to track-back similar images from a certain source. Use this to find the origin of unknown images you have as a file, or even find higher resolution versions of the image. To use this powerful feature, visit Google Images and click on the camera icon. There are other services out there that also provide this function, like TinEye.

[Google Advanced Image Search] [Google Images]

#3 Send Commands To Your Android Phone

This is one really cool feature Google included not long ago. It allows you to communicate with your Android smartphone by sending commands through the search address bar on any desktop machine with your active account. These commands enable you to perform some operations with your device remotely or retrieve some information from it. Check the available commands for this feature below.

Clearly you must be signed in for these commands to work. For more details about the integration and usage of this functionality, please visit the reference links below.

[Link your phone to Google] [groovyPost] [WonderHowTo] [PhoneArena]

#2 Advanced Search Commands

This is where you can show yourself as a power user of Google Search. Below you see a list of useful search commands linked to examples, which you can easily adapt to your own needs.

  • Exact Search – This one is pretty common, but many people still don’t know that you can search for a whole sentence by putting it between quotes.
  • Site Info – Get basic information form a website.
  • Specific Site Search – Limit your search to a specific website. Very useful when the site itself doesn’t offer many search options.
  • Page Title Text – Specify what should be on the title of the page. You can use this to search into directories to find specific files.
  • Specific File Type – This one is very handy to find files with a specific format.
  • Missing/Unknown Words – Great to discover missing words in a sentence (like lyrics) or variations of a certain expression.
  • Related Websites – Use this to list other sites that are somehow related to the one you specified.

If you are used to the conventional keyword-based search, I bet you noticed how powerful and advantageous these commands are and how they can improve your research significantly. You can easily combine two or more of these commands to narrow-down your search and unleash the true power of the search engine.

[TechRadar] [Distractify] [Digital Trends]

#1 Functions And Tools

Now here are some nice things Google offers that you might have no idea they existed. Some of them are more of an Easter egg than a search feature per se. What is interesting is that you can always find some utility from the operations presented below.

  • Food Info – Retrieve basic info from the food you give.
  • Food Comparison – Similar to the previous one, but now comparing the data of two different foods.
  • Currency Conversion – Convert the values between two currencies. Very useful.
  • Percentage – Simple percentage calculation of values.
  • Math Operations – Math Operations. All four basic operations are included, obviously.
  • Word Definition – Very handy to quickly find the definition of a certain word.
  • Restrict by Date – You can restrict the search records within a date range. Good for research purposes.
  • Units Conversion – Convert between different units, like meters to miles, cubic meters to liters, and vice-versa.
  • Weather Forecast – Get the weather forecast for your location. You can also specify the location, like Orlando.
  • Local Time – Same as above, but this time presenting the current time. Again, you can specify the location with this one too.
  • Flight Schedule – Check for a flight schedule from its identification.
  • Timer – Very interesting one. It sets a timer with the giving time in hours, minutes and seconds.
  • Translation – Perform basic word translations. You can definitely use Google Translator for that, but for simple words this is enough for most of the time.
  • Word Origin – This will give the origin/etymology of the specified word.
  • Tip Calculator – Yep.
  • Check Your Flights. – Since it is linked to your Google account, you must be signed in for this to work.
  • Reminder – Fast way to add a simple reminder to your account, which also makes sign in a requirement.

I bet this changes drastically the impressions you had from Google as just a search engine. They can be used on a variety of ways, expanding the search usability and making it far more manageable.

[GottaBeMobile] [Lifehacker] [The Gooru] [WhoIsHostingThis]

Follow these tips to become a power user of this amazing tool that is Google Search. Please share this with your friends, so they can find something useful here as well.

photo credit: Google via flickr