Let’s have a quick chat about a great search tool – the “site colon” search.
Have you ever found yourself searching a website for something specific that you just can’t seem to find? You know it’s there, but the website doesn’t have the best navigation tools? I definitely have.
Let’s use an example.
Last week I mentioned that I had found some FindAGrave entries outside of the US. They were fabulous and unexpected finds. I wanted to quickly search some other cemeteries. But searching for foreign cemeteries on FindAGrave isn’t very friendly. This is what you see:
On the main page you can choose “Search for a cemetery” on the right, top bullet list, second choice down.
Then you see this search box. I was searching for cemeteries in Scotland. I didn’t know the names of the cemeteries, I just wanted to see how many cemeteries there were in specific parishes and counties. So, I didn’t have a cemetery name to type into that little search box. I chose Scotland on the “Country” drop down list.
Then I find myself looking at a very long list that can’t be searched by smaller locale.
At this point I have a few options. I could waste a whole bunch of time scrolling through that super long list hoping to see the parish names I want. I could google search cemeteries in specific parishes and counties, come back and enter cemetery names one at a time into the search box.
I can use a site colon search.
In my case, I wanted to see all cemeteries for Carluke, Lanark, Scotland on FindAGrave.
I went to google and typed this:
site:www.findagrave.com carluke, lanark, scotland
I’ve just told google to please search the FindAGrave website for Carluke, Lanark, Scotland. My results look like this:
Looking at the list quickly, I see that there are two cemeteries for Carluke included on the FindAGrave website. The Old Carluke Cemetery and the Carluke Wilton Cemetery. I clicked on the first google result and I am taken right to the search page for the Old Carluke Cemetery on FindAGrave:
Just what I was looking for in about 15 seconds!
A site colon search can help you quickly find something you need on FindAGrave or any website that you are struggling to navigate.
The formula is simple:
site:www.websitenamehere.com followed by search terms
Make sure there are no spaces until after the .com.
Give it a try!
And let me know if it helps you out. 😉
ps – FindAGrave is being overhauled and will have more navigation tools for finding foreign cemeteries. But for now, a site colon search is a quick shortcut. It works on most websites, not just FindAGrave.