Finding The Right Information: Techniques For Online Writers
If you want to write engaging and valuable web content, you can’t just type a search term in Google or Yahoo and consider it done.
Search Engines Are Just The Beginning
Search engines are powerful tools for an online writer, and there are different techniques you can use to narrow down your search results. Most of the major ones such as Google, Yahoo, Bing and Ask have simple FAQ pages that can help a searcher master the different methods.
Besides concentrating on just the big boys, though, also keep in mind the thousands of search engines that are subject or even region specific. For instance, here’s a very short list of some that are subject specific:
1. enables you to search medical journals as well as clinical trials
2. lets you search forums and message boards
3. will give you an extensive list of cheat codes for all sorts of games
4. searches videos from YouTube, MySpace, Google Video and other sites
5. is an all-encompassing engine for anything scientific
The above gives you a small sample of the many search engines you can use when you are hunting for information that will make your writing shine.
Online Newspapers And Magazines
It can also be helpful to search for news items about your topic. This can give you a heads-up about the latest issues, and is also a good way to look for a different angle on a popular topic. You can start by searching Google or Yahoo news. Simply include your search term in quotation marks and click on news, and both sites will give you a list of all the latest articles containing those exact words.
You can also go site specific, of course. Either visit the individual site of a news organization you wish to search, or search for your term using the ‘site:’ method. For example, if you wanted to see a list of the New York Times articles about horses, you could enter ‘horses site: N.Y. Times’ in Google and you would see just such a list.
Directories and Other Sites That Deserve A Look
Don’t forget about searching the many directories that are available online. These differ from regular search engines in that the entries have been specifically selected by a business, person or organization. You can find a list of directories via any major search engine.
Also, use a.pdf search engine to find a vast array of resources that usually remain hidden in a normal search. And, don’t forget to sites for all sorts of quality information from the various government agencies.