How to Create a Custom Google Search

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There’s a reason Google is the dominant search option in the world. While there are other search engine options, Google tends to be the default choice for many people. The reason? It’s because Google provides a quick and easy way to search for information on the Web.

Google custom search

But that’s also a problem. Searching the entire Web usually returns many more results than are helpful.

Google helps solve this problem by allowing you to create a personalized search engine using Google custom search. When you create a Google custom search, you can add specific websites to use in the search.

How to Add Websites to Your Google Search

  1. To use this service, you first need a Google account (which you probably already have).
  2. Next, go to the custom search dashboard.
  3. Add specific websites you want Google to search. You can add any of the following:

    Individual pages: www.example.com/page.html

    Entire site: www.mysite.com/*

    Parts of site: www.example.com/docs/* or www.example.com/docs/

    Entire domain: *.example.com

  4. Name your search.

There’s almost no limit to the number of sites you can include in a custom search or the number of different custom searches you can create. The primary advantage of creating a custom search is to significantly reduce the number of hits you generate during a search.

Using the wizard, specify sites you want to include or exclude from your search engine. You can also prioritize sites, giving some more precedence than others. Once you’ve created this list of places to search, test your new engine and preview search results. If you like what you see, you can cut and paste a few lines of code to place the custom engine on your website or add it to your Google homepage.

I’ve created a custom search for insurance trade magazines that makes it easier for me to find specific insurance-related information.

By investing the little time it takes to set up and understand Google Custom Search, you’ll save that much more time when you do a search.

What custom searches would you create?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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