Tips for using advanced search engine commands - OneLaunch
Tips for using advanced search engine commands
30 April 2020
Search engine commands

When you use a search engine like Bing or Google, you can augment your query with special operators that can refine search results or perform a specific function. For example, if you search the term “cowboys,” you’ll receive results for everything from the football team to Western films. By using search engine operators, you can adjust your search to only receive results about a specific topic or from a certain site. Excluding football and searching specifically for “cowboys” can cut down on hundreds of millions of results, allowing you to find relevant information faster and easier. 

What are Search Engine Operators?

Essentially, search engine operators are simple commands that you type alongside a term in the search bar. While the exact format for this varies, most are pretty simple to use and can dramatically improve your search results. This is because search engines categorize and sort all sorts of data for search terms and websites. Search engines index everything from a news story’s source to a document’s file type and you can search for them using operators. While Google, Bing, and other search providers are different search engines, some of the most common operators work with almost any search engine, especially Google and Bing. 

Advanced Search Engine Commands

PurposeCommand ExampleResult
term1 AND term2OneLaunch AND browserSearches for each word on every page. Most search engines do this by default.
term1 OR term2car OR truckSearches for one term or the other on each page. 
Exact Match“match this”Searches specifically for the phrase in quotes.
Exclude Thiscar -truckSearches for car while excluding any result that includes truck.
From This Sourcesource:nytimes cat storySearches News pages for a cat story from the New York Times. You can place terms on either side of the operator. 
DefineDefine:phantasmagoriaSearches for a definition of phantasmagoria
This featuresSearches only the chosen site for the additional search terms. In this case, it searches the OneLaunch site for features. You can place terms on either side of the operator. 
WildcardSteve * appleSearches for each word but allows additional, relevant words to replace the asterisk. 
File Typefile type: png cat
ext: png cat
Finds results of the chosen file type. In this case, .png images of cats. You can place terms on either side of the operator. 
WeatherWeather: 11212
weather: New York City
Retrieves the weather of the chosen zip code or city. 
Moviesmovie: CatsRetrieves only results for the film you choose. 
MapMap: 11212
map: New York City
Retrieves a map of the chosen zip code or area.
Stocksstocks: fRetrieves the status of the chosen stock, using New York Stock Exchange symbols.
Equations73 – 40103+3942(40+60)Solves the equation entered into the search bar.
Percentages32% of 288Calculates percentages.
Unit Conversion112 celsius in fahrenheit
20 inches in cm
Performs unit conversion, also works for currencies, distance, weight, and much more


If you’re having difficulty getting the search results you want or if you just want to improve your overall searching experience, these operators and tools can help. Don’t forget, you can use search engine operators in the OneLaunch search bar. Refine your searches and improve your results with an innovative browser and search engine operators. 

Check out a YouTube Video on this topic from the OneLaunch Team: How to search the web more efficiently with OneLaunch