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Evaluating What You Find

Google’s web-page-ranking system, PageRank, tends to give priority to better respected and trusted information. Well-respected sites link to other well-respected sites. This linking boosts the PageRank of high-quality sites. Consequently, more accurate pages are typically listed before sites that include unreliable and erroneous material. (The various browser toolbars can show you the PageRank of the […]

...read all of: Evaluating What You Find

This page was last modified on: Tuesday March 13, 2007


Some search engines sell their search results, in addition to showing ads. A sold result means that a link to the buyer’s page is put at or near the top of the results page, just as if the search engine thought it was one of the best results. Usually, there is no indication that the […]

...read all of: Ads

This page was last modified on: Sunday August 24, 2008

Last Results Page

Though the statistics bar may estimate that more than 1000 results match your query, Google doesn’t serve more than 1000 results for any query. You can get to the 1000th or last result by setting your Preferences to display 100 results/page and clicking on the highest number or last “o” at the bottom of the […]

...read all of: Last Results Page

This page was last modified on: Friday February 2, 2007

Customizing Your Results: Preferences

Whenever I run a new piece of software, … I [first] … look at the program’s ‘preferences’ panel. By clicking through the options, I rapidly learn what a program can do and what its shortcomings are. Google is no different. — Simson Garfinkel, Getting More from Google, Technology Review, June 4, 2003

You can customize the […]

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This page was last modified on: Thursday August 21, 2008


As the web has spread across the world, more and more web pages are available in languages other than English. Google provides a translation link and language tools to enable you to read pages written in unfamiliar languages.
Google translates pages by computer. Machine translation is difficult to do well and tends not to be as […]

...read all of: Translation

This page was last modified on: Tuesday March 13, 2007

File Type Conversion

Google converts all file types it searches to either HTML or text (unless, of course, they already are in one of these formats). Google searches a variety of file formats including

File Format

Adobe Acrobat PDF
A publishing format commonly used for product manuals and documents of all sorts.

Adobe PostScript
A printing format often used for academic papers.

Hypertext Markup […]

...read all of: File Type Conversion

This page was last modified on: Tuesday March 13, 2007

Product Search

When Google finds products relevant to your query, above your search results, you may find up to three links to items that merchants list in Google’s Product Search service.


Product Search is also called Shopping. There are two Shopping links near the top of the screen shot above.
These problems give you practice in searching for products.

Find […]

...read all of: Product Search

This page was last modified on: Thursday March 13, 2008

News Headlines

When Google finds current news relating to your query, Google includes up to three headlines that link to news stories above your search results. Why at most three? So as not to push the web search results off the page.
Of course, since news by definition reports recent events, you’ll see the most recent headlines about […]

...read all of: News Headlines

This page was last modified on: Tuesday March 13, 2007

Similar Pages

Here’s how to find results similar to another Google search result. Let’s say you’re interested in finding sites similar to that of Consumer Reports. First, search for their site.


Click on the Similar pages link that appears on the bottom line for the Consumer Reports result.

The link may be useful for finding more consumer resources, or […]

...read all of: Similar Pages

This page was last modified on: Tuesday March 13, 2007

Cached Pages

Google takes a snapshot of each page it examines and caches (stores) that version as a back-up. The cached version is what Google uses to judge if a page is a good match for your query.
Practically every search result includes a Cached link. Clicking on that link takes you to the Google cached version of […]

...read all of: Cached Pages

This page was last modified on: Wednesday December 28, 2011

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Creative Commons

By Nancy Blachman and Jerry Peek who aren't Google employees. For permission to copy & create derivative works, visit Google Guide's Creative Commons License webpage.