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I have a frustrating feeling that Google's results are sometimes inaccurate:

When I'm looking for terms that do not exist together, Google gives me results anyway even if these results do not contain these search terms together.

How to avoid this useless behavior?

2 Answers 2

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If you want all the results contain the exact term you're looking for, just wrap the term in double quote. E.g. to search for soccer and avoid the synonyms of soccer to appear in search results, just search for "soccer", all the results will contain the term soccer.

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  • And if they don't, perhaps the page has changed since Google last crawled it.
    – oKtosiTe
    Feb 8, 2012 at 19:22
  • Also bear in mind, that Google will want to bring you to websites that are thematically linked to your search term, even though it does not appear on the first listed sites. Feb 8, 2012 at 22:25
  • @user99572isfine If you search with double quotes, google will only show the results which contains that term. No thematically linked result.
    – Bibhas
    Feb 9, 2012 at 14:03
  • @Bibhas No, I beg to differ. Look here on Google help support.google.com/websearch/bin/…. In light of that link you need to revise your answer, otherwise it is wrong. Feb 10, 2012 at 13:56
  • By putting double quotes around a single word, you are telling Google to match that word precisely as you typed it. I guess I should update my answer adding the single word part. I do not see anything else.
    – Bibhas
    Feb 10, 2012 at 14:17
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Enclosing a word or phrase between double quotes tells Google to search for the exact term / phrase and make it "mandatory". In the early days of Google to indicate that a term must be included, the +(plus) symbol was used, but this symbol is no longer used as a search operator.

If you're looking for pages having multiple words, type them one after the other; there is no need to add a symbol or operator. Tips:

  • Whenever it be convenient, type a well-constructed sentence or question.
  • If you will write a keyword-style query, add the most important keywords (terms) first.

Below each result, it might show a line telling you if the result doesn't contain all the terms. If a term is missing, it will tell which term is missing and will show a link after the label "Show results with" with the missing term's text.

Result with missed term / must include term link

Click on it to refine the search to include the missed term.


Google's mindset is that presenting the page "About 0 results" means bad business for them, as there are no ads / paid content to show, and it might be disappointing for most users.

In old versions of the Google Search help articles, the symbol * as a wildcard and AROUND(value) were mentioned but are no longer mentioned. The documentation only uses the Advanced Search.

The field terms appearing:, has as default option anywhere on the page. Try in the text of the page. This will add the operator allintext: at the beginning of the query.

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