Tutorial: How to Exclude Words From Google Search

If you're finding Google results that contain WAY too many options, you should consider using advanced search operators to filter down your search. This tutorial shows you exactly how to exclude certain words from Google's search results.
Eduardo Yi
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Jun 14, 2023
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3 min. read
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According to Statista, Google has the highest market share among all search engines. It is accountable for 87% of all web searches.

Smartphones have made it possible for anyone with an internet connection to look for information with a simple type on the search box.

Every day, Google processes billions of queries. The sophisticated search engine has made surfing the internet effortless and efficient. A search on the Google search bar will get you to the results page which has answers to almost all search terms. The Google search bar rarely leave your search query unanswered.

Google search results have become better and better over the years, but it’s still hard to find exactly what you’re looking for.

Many times, when you search for something on Google, you’ll get a mix of irrelevant and relevant results.

Excluding words from your searches is a quick and effective way to dramatically improve the quality of your results.

To exclude words from your Google Search results, you just need to learn how to use a couple of search operators.

Search operators are symbols and expressions you can use within your search query to refine the results you get from Google.

If you’re in digital marketing, learning how to use search operators can help you:

  • Get insight into your competitors’ SEO strategy
  • Find massive business opportunities
  • Estimate market size and competitiveness from similar websites.
  • Make decisions about your content marketing strategy

All of it for free! No need to pay for expensive research tools.

Sidenote: If you’re getting started with search operators, download our free cheat sheet of operators and tactics below and keep it around as you get familiar with them.

[Cheat Sheet] How to Use Google Advanced Search Operators

Finding Exact Information on Google

Google has refined itself with time, but it is still tough to find the exact match you are searching for or reach a specific site on the internet. When you perform a Google search for something, you often receive a mix of relevant and irrelevant results.

However, the search engine is far more than most of us realize. With the google search tips and search techniques discussed in this article, your experience with Google search will significantly improve.

Learning how to use search operators and excluding words from your search will effectively improve the quality of your Google search results.

How to Exclude Words From Google Search

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to use the minus (-) sign operator with other operators to exclude words from google search. Plus, we’ll throw in a couple of bonus tips so you can use the minus sign like a pro.

Minus (-) sign

The minus (-) sign allows you to remove results that contain a specific word or term.

When you use a minus sign or hyphen in front of your web search, the google search algorithm will omit all web pages containing that term.

For example, let’s say I want to buy an electric scooter to get to work. Your Google search results might look something like this:

When you check the pages listed there, you realize a lot of those include lists from 2019, which might be out of date.

If you use the minus sign, you can exclude the term 2019 from your results.

It’s as simple as that.

Quotes (“”)

If you surround a term with quotation marks and use it in conjunction with the minus symbol, you’ll exclude results that contain exactly that exact phrase.

For example, you might use this if you’re looking for vacation ideas but want to avoid a specific destination.


If you want to avoid getting results from a specific website, you can do that using the site: operator followed by a minus sign. Make sure not to leave any white space between the site: operator and the minus sign, else you wouldn’t get the desired search result.

For example, if you’re looking for a coffee table but want to avoid amazon.com, your search on the search results page could look something like this:

In Conclusion

Now you know how to exclude words from Google searches. These were the basic search operators to help you exclude words from the Google search engine. If you want to take this further, don’t forget to check out our guide on how to use Google Search Operators for SEO.


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