Google Web Search is a feature of Google that allows you to search for pages across the entire web. By default, it also will find matches from related Google search services, all mixed together as part of the “Everything” results that display.

Using Google Web Search is easy — just go to the Google home page and perform a search. However, you might find our guides below provide you some helpful information on how to get more out of your Google searching:

Search Engine Land’s Guide To Google
How To Use Google To Search
Meet The New Google Look & Its Colorful, Useful “Search Options” Column

Further below are recent articles from Search Engine Land related to Google Web Search:

Googling The Weather: From 20% Project To Sophisticated Query Analysis

google-weather-600 Millions of us have asked Google to play weatherperson. In order to get an answer to one of our oldest and most basic questions, we type a variety of words and numbers -- city names, neighborhoods and ZIP codes, plus words like "weather," "forecast" or maybe "temperature" -- into the Google search box, and Google typically has an answer back to us in less than a second. But have you noticed that our weather-related searches can be more complex now than ever? It's true. In recent years, Google has gone from focusing on the keywords we use to figuring out the meaning of our search que [...]


Open Letter: Why Search Engine Land Will & Won’t Cover Someone Being Penalized By Google

google-flyswatter-penalty-600 It's been big news recently about major brands and Google penalties, and the floodgates feel open on people spotting even more brands possibly hit out there. Some new crackdown by Google? No. It's the rise of hyperactive attention in this area, and that's turning into a problem. Hence this open letter, on how we're planning to address "public penalty reports" here at Search Engine Land. In Summary: Penalties Aren't Always Newsworthy The TL;DR is this. We're not going to be writing about every brand that is suspected to be hit by a Google penalty. Unless there's some exceptional news value, t [...]


Google Showing Restaurant Menus In Card-Style Search Result

menu-food-featured Google has started showing complete restaurant menus in its search results when a query specifically looks for menu information. We think Allie Brown was the first to spot this when she shared the results of a search for "jones brunch menu" on Twitter. For that query, Google begins the search results with a card-style answer that details the restaurant's menu across several categories -- appetizers, entrées, sandwiches and more. (For the record, Google actually seems to be getting the details wrong. In looking at the Jones website, this looks like their "all day" menu, not the brunc [...]


Google Showing Large Video Embeds In Some Search Results

youtube-keywords-featured Now, if you search Google for video related content, Google may return a large, playable, video directly at the top of the search results. For example, searching for [sing it loud come around] shows a large YouTube video that you can play directly in the search results. Searching for [neil young cinnamon girl] also shows a YouTube video, as does [the killers mr brightside] and many other searches. I have yet to see any other source, outside of YouTube show up in any of my tests. Last year, Google began testing video thumbnails on tablet devices. This was spotted by Moz and [...]


Google Search Redesigns Stock Quotes “Card,” Drops Competitor Links, Then Brings Them Back

old-google-stock-quotes Yesterday, Google launched a new design of the stock quotes "card" at the top of its search results. The new card dropped links to competing financial websites, something Google previously had in place since 2000. But after attention was drawn to the fact, Google quietly restored the links. Google Operating System noted the change and the drop of competitor links yesterday, as did TechCrunch. And that's what we saw when we first posted this story at 9:22am ET today: Compare the new card above to the old one below, and you can see how the links to competitors were removed: Goog [...]


Google Showing Date Selector In Knowledge Graph Carousel For Hotels

knowledge-graph Google has added a new feature to the Knowledge Graph Carousel, where for some search queries, it will show a date selector box. For example, a search on [hotel in new york] returns the local hotel listings at the top carousel but now adds this date selector option. Here is a picture: You can now click on the start and/or end date and a calendar pop up will show up for you to change your check in and check out dates. Then the pricing listed in the hotel results may change with the dates. Google has allowed hotel, flight and other bookings through Google's search results and has [...]


Google Search OneBox Answers Are Getting More Detailed

google-data-knowledge-brain-featured There are several reports throughout the search community that Google's OneBox answers or a form of the knowledge graph, are now more aggressive about answering even more complex questions with more detailed responses or answers. When we asked Google about this, a Google spokesperson told us, "we're always experimenting with different types of answers, but we don't have more details to share at this point." Some questions Google attempts to answer now include: [why is the sky blue?] [who ended world war 2?] But some answers might be a bit off or unusual such as: [what are the largest mammals [...]


Google’s Latest Search Trick: “As The Crow Flies” Distance Calculation

Google logo Move over, pandas. Fly away, hummingbirds. Waddle away, penguins. Google has a new animal friend: crows. But unlike its past associations with the animal world, this one isn't about SEO or algorithms -- it's a new search trick that adds distance calculation to Google's OneBox feature. (The OneBox is where Google often presents immediate answers to search queries rather than just presenting links relevant to the query.) As Google explained late Friday, the OneBox can now answer how far it is between two remote locations. It does the measurement "as the crow flies." Google's examples were [...]


Days-Old Error In Google Search Causes Gmail User To Get Thousands Of Emails

google-oops-mistake-featured Earlier this week, we reported a glitch in Google Search, where clicking on a link after a search for Gmail listed someone's email address, complete in a window ready to send them email. With today's Gmail outage, that error -- never fixed -- has resulted in at least one person getting thousands of unwanted emails. You can still see the error now. Search for "gmail" in Google: Under the main listing, you'll see an "Email" link -- what's called a "sitelink" that's designed to help people navigate to specific places within a web site. The problem is, that link doesn't point to a pag [...]


Study: 34% Of Google Search Results Have Rich Media, 9 Organic Links & 9 Search Ads

conductor company logo Conductor released a study that analyzed the ten blue links at Google showing 34% show rich media, nine organic listings and nine search ads. 34% Of Search Snippets Have Rich Media The Conductor study showed that there was rich media on the search results page 34% of the time. The breakdown of rich media showed images appear on 28% of search results pages, news 9%, and shopping 1%. You have to keep in mind, rich media in search results is incredibly query-dependent. So, based on the sampling of Conductor's study, 34% was the number they reached. 88% Of The Search Results Contain 9 Organ [...]


An Easy Way To Check What Referrer Data Google, Bing Or Yahoo Pass To Your Secure Site

secure With the three major search engines migrating their default searches to secure search, over SSL/HTTPS, marketers and webmasters want to know what referrer and analytics data will be passed to them and what won't. The majority of Google is secure search, Yahoo yesterday defaulted all searches to be conducted over SSL, and Bing is currently testing SSL search for those who opt in. Testing Referrer Data From HTTPS Search To HTTP URL The default protocol for passing referrer from an HTTPS URL to a non HTTPS URL is to not pass any referrer data at all. Both Yahoo and Bing comply with that, whi [...]


Google Adds A Knowledge Graph Popup To Search Results, But Is It Good For Site Owners?

google-knowledge-graph-featured Google has announced the formal rollout of a test that some searchers have been seeing for a few days now -- a test that associates a Knowledge Graph popup with certain web pages in desktop search results. The popup adds more information about certain search results, which sounds like it should be good for searchers. But, as I'll show below, the implementation may not be great for site owners. "You'll see this extra information when a site is widely recognized as notable online, when there is enough information to show or when the content may be handy for you," wrote Google's Bart Niechw [...]


Google Now Changing The Top Search Filters Based On Query

google logo - basic 570x270 Google is now dynamically changing the top search menu/filters based on the search query entered by the searcher. So now, what options you see at the top might differ or be in a different order based on the query you enter into Google's search box. A Google spokesperson told us this based on noticing that some Google search filters went missing recently. Google said: We’re always making changes to Search to help you find the most useful things more easily. Now when you search, the type of results you can select at the top of the page will vary depending on what makes sense for your se [...]


Searching For Gmail In Google Links You To Compose A Message To A Google Apps User

gmail-search-featured If you search for [gmail] in Google and if you click on the sitelink that reads "Google mail" -- Google may push you to a page that composes an email to a Google Apps user. Here is the search result you may see when you search for [gmail]: Clicking on that sitelink below the main listing may take you to the compose window to email a specific Google Apps user. This will only happen if (1) you see the sitelink and (2) you are logged into a Google Account. Otherwise, if you don't have a Google Account, you will need to create one to send this user an email. Why is some strange [...]


Google’s Matt Cutts: We Don’t Have Different Algorithms For Different Web Position Slots

google-matt-cutts-duplicate-content Google's head of search spam, Matt Cutts, posted a video answering another webmaster question. The question was, "Are results in different positions ranked by different algorithms?" The answer is no, Google does not have reserve web search results slots or positions for ranking for specific algorithms. For example, slots 3-5 in the results are not reserved for fresher content, while slots 6-8 are not reserved for more authoritative content. It does not work like that. Google has algorithms that ranks all the search results and the algorithms are not assigned to specific positions. Her [...]


Infographic: The Biggest Changes To Google Search In 2013

What were some of the biggest changes to Google Search in 2013, in terms of how its search algorithms ranked and displayed information? How about an infographic rundown, as we close out the year? Produced by the folks at E2M Solutions, the infographic covers a number of important updates and other developments relating to Google Search over the past year, ranging from continued refreshes of Panda to the announcement of Google Hummingbird. Not everything matches to the exact dates shown on this infographic, such as Hummingbird marked as happening on August 20, 2013. Also, the "Link Devalu [...]


How SEO Greed Can Ruin A Perfectly Good Linking Strategy

rapgenius-logo By now, you are likely aware of the Rap Genius "Tweet In Exchange For Anchor Text" link scheme, hencefore to be known as TieFating. Barry Schwartz reported last week on John Marbach's exposé of the popular music site, Rap Genius, which had started an "affiliate" program in order to get links pointing to their website. After it was exposed, Matt Cutts, head of Google's Webspam team, said, "we’re aware and looking into it." The site was then officially penalized for link schemes. [caption id="attachment_180758" align="alignright" width="300"] Links can do many things, but don't get [...]


Google Has Officially Penalized Rap Genius For Link Schemes

google-cop-busted-featured Google has penalized Rap Genius for link schemes this morning. If you go to Google and search for [rap genius], rapgenius.com will not be found on the first page. Instead you will find links to their Twitter account, Facebook page, Wikipedia profile and stories like this about them being penalized by Google. But you won't find rapgenius.com on the first page. Here is a picture: As we covered the other day, Rap Genius was using link schemes to manipulate Google's rankings. It was brought to Google's attention, where the head of search spam, Matt Cutts, said we’re aware and looking i [...]


Matt Cutts Implies Google Is Aware Of SEOs Bribing Bloggers

matt-cutts-links On Friday night, Google's head of search spam, Matt Cutts tweeted a link to a Gawker story named Shady Marketing Firms Are Still Quietly Bribing Bloggers. Matt said, "we're taking action on hundreds of buyers, dozens of sites, & dozens of spammy writers," in reference to that story. It is hard to say if Google has taken action or is looking to take action in the near future against sites using this technique but it is clear, Google knows about it. The technique is not about going to the site owner and selling links through the owner of the site. Instead, it is going directly to the repo [...]


Google Showing Missing Keywords On Long Tail Queries

google logo - basic 570x270 Alex Chitu noticed that Google is now showing the keywords Google did not match on for your long tail search. The example below shows how Google did not match on a specific keyword within the search phrase and noted that under the search results snippet. We have to suspect this is part of the Hummingbird algorithm doing its job. Google prefers to show some search results even when there isn't an exact match, especially if the searcher is being so specific. Google's way of informing the searcher that it wasn't an exact match is by detailing which keywords Google could not match o [...]


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