25 Nov

Save time with these search tips

Searching online can sometimes be more time consuming than expected. Since we'd all like to save a little time (and search more effectively), we'll show you a few tips on how to search the Web using some of DuckDuckGo's handy features:

Firstly, thanks to Nathan Lucy who made this infographic summarizing DuckDuckGo's search syntax which prompted us to write this post.

Nathan Lucy's search cheat sheet for DuckDuckGo

Quick results without clicking

DuckDuckGo has many "Instant Answers" that help you find what you're looking for in few or zero clicks. Nathan mentioned "news" and "map" which both bring up a tab showing recent news or a map, but there are many other keywords that also bring up special Instant Answers, such as "image", "video", "recipe" and "definition". If you're a developer, you can even contribute your own answers via duckduckhack.com.

Screenshot of results page for 'bezos musk news'.

Skip the results page

Every keystroke counts, right? Even typing [.] [c] [o] [m] wastes valuable microseconds so why not skip it altogether with [\] instead. Starting your search with \ will take you straight to the first result for your search without showing the results page. It's also handy if you can't remember whether you need .com, .net, .org, etc. For example, if you want to visit This Week in Tech, just searching for \twit will take you there directly because https://twit.tv/is the first result on DuckDuckGo for the search "twit"

Enforce a search term

As you can see in Nathan's image, a minus (hyphen) removes a particular word from your search, but on the other hand adding a plus sign will force results to include that word. This is useful for unusual spelling or uncommon words. For example searching for spyke also includes Skype and spike in the results, in case the user's spelling wasn't quite right. Searching for +spyke, however, ensures only that word is searched for.

Shortcuts to other websites' search function

And finally we have our most powerful shortcut feature: !bangs. Simply put, it's a fast way to search directly on a particular website. For example !w philtrum will take you directly to the Wikipedia page for philtrum. To search for the Indian comedy film "3 idiots" (which I highly recommend, by the way!) on IMDb, just search for !imdb 3 idiots and you shall be taken to it's page, like a magic carpet whisking you through the fields of hyperspace. We have thousands of these !bangs and naturally you can find them by searching for !bang.

Screenshot of mobile bang search shortcuts.

Check out our Help pages for more DuckDuckGo tips and tricks, or tell us your recommendations in the comments!

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Thanks for the cheatsheet

posted by <hidden> • 3 years and 1 month ago Link

great tips :) thanks !

posted by Pagare • 3 years and 1 month ago Link

Thanks for this blog and a great cheatsheet from Nathan

posted by preemeijer community_leader • 3 years and 3 months ago Link

Yo utilizo mucho la busqueda por palabra clave en la url por ejemplo inurl:viajes o inurl:moda

posted by grandesviajes • 3 years and 3 months ago Link

Thanks @grandesviajes. That's a good point. I use inurl:blog and inurl:forum as well when I'm looking for opinion or discussion pages.

posted by tagawa Staff • 3 years and 3 months ago Link