Custom Search - Discover more: : A Complete Guide to Google Programmable Search Engines book cover
1st Edition

Custom Search - Discover more:
A Complete Guide to Google Programmable Search Engines

ISBN 9780367569686
Published June 23, 2021 by Chapman & Hall
194 Pages 82 B/W Illustrations

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USD $130.00

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Book Description

Google’s Programmable Search Engines (PSEs, previously called Custom Search Engines) provide search opportunities that are unavailable with any other tool. PSEs have advanced settings and search operators that are not supported by "regular" Google. With PSEs, it is possible to perform filtered searches within parts of the web as if they were databases!

While lots of professionals use existing PSEs to source for talent or with other research goals, few people have experience creating them. Even fewer know about powerful PSE-only search operators. The main reason PSEs are not as popular as they should be is that it is not easy to get educated on PSE creation. There is little information online and no books (other than this one) on the subject. Even less info is available on the "structured" operators that allow for filtered searches.

The first of its kind, this book hopes to popularize these fun and powerful tools so that many more people can include PSEs in their work.

Key Features:

  • A detailed introduction to creating PSEs, including info absent in Google’s help
  • A "hack" for creating PSEs that look for profiles in seconds
  • An introduction to advanced PSE-only search operators allowed to perform filtered searches of parts of the web
  • A "hack" for expanding Google’s search limits to 500 terms
  • Use cases, examples, and approaches that would be educational for those doing online research

This book will be of interest to researchers, OSINT specialists, investigative journalists, Competitive Intelligence people, recruiters, and Sourcers, to name a few categories, and to the general public interested in how to search better.

Table of Contents


Google vs. Custom Search Engines                                               

The Gap to Cover                                                                           

Custom Search Engine Users                                                         

What We Skipped                                                                            

Part 1. Introduction to Google Custom Search Engines (CSEs)     

Chapter 1. Simple and Advanced Googling                                      

The Main Search Principle -"Visualize Success"                          

Surface Web                                                                                  

Basic Boolean Search Syntax                                                        

Advanced Search Operators                                                         

Search Operator Asterisk * - "Fill In the Blanks"                         

Include Omitted Results                                                                

Google Image Search                                                                    

Notes for Practical Googling                                                         

Number of Results                                                                         

Crossed-Out Words in Results (Soft "AND")                               

Searching Verbatim                                                                       

Searching by Date Range                                                              

Chapter 2. What is a Google Custom Search Engine?                  

CSEs vs. Google - Advantages and Drawbacks                            

Chapter 3. Let’s Begin: Your First CSE                                         

Chapter 4. CSEs: Editing and Testing                                            

Results for Different End-Users                                                    

CSEs for End-users                                                                       

Part 2. Configure a Custom Search Engine                                    

Chapter 5. What are you looking for?                                             

"Soft" Site Search                                                                          

URL Patterns                                                                                 


Automatically Add Search Terms                                                 

Chapter 6. Search Refinements                                                        

Chapter 7. Synonyms                                                                        

Synonyms Example                                                                       

Working with Synonyms XML Files                                           

How to Use Synonyms to Implement Long OR Statements         

Chapter 8. Configuration Files                                                         

Backing Up, Sharing, and Duplicating                                          

Chapter 9. Other Features of Note                                               


Image Search                                                                                 

Chapter 10. Troubleshoot Your CSE                                              

Part 3. Discover more: Advanced CSEs                                          

Chapter 11. Metadata Types                                                     Objects                                                                Objects and Custom Snippets in Google Search      



Chapter 12. and Custom Search                                 

Tip: Easily Build CSEs for Public Profiles                                   

Beyond the Person                                                                         

Chapter 13. Knowledge Graphs, a Necessary Detour                    

Tip: Knowledge Graph Boolean                                                    

Examples of CSEs that search for KG Entities                             

Chapter 14. Fascinating: CSE Advanced Search Operators        

The Person Object: a Closer Look                                              

The Reality is Not Perfect                                                           

Non-Standard Operators                                                              

How to Identify Structured Data on a Page                                 

How To Search for Structured Data with Any CSE - Advanced


more: Operators for Refinements                                                

How to Find Objects                                                                    

Tip: Search for Profiles on a Social Site                                     

Find Which Sites and Pages Contain Which Objects with "Search Everything"                                                                                 

Next: Search by Fields and Values                                              

Multiple Objects and Instances in One Page                              

Order of Boolean Operations                                                       

CSE Operators for Less Technical End-Users                            

CSE Operators for the Open Web                                              

Chapter 15. API and Other Considerations                                 

Custom Search Engine APIs                                                      

Steps to Identify Advanced more:p: Syntax                                


Sorting Results                                                                             

Part 4. How We Built Our CSEs                                                    

Chapter 16. BasicCSEs Examples                                                  

Google Scholar Profiles CSE                                                      

Diversity Associations CSE                                                       

Email Formats  CSE                                                                    

Hoovers CSE Operators                                                              

Language Proficiency CSE                                                         

Hidden Resumes CSE                                                                  

URL Shorteners CSE                                                                 

Search Everything CSE                                                               

Chapter 17. Object-Oriented CSEs                                              

Dev.To Profiles                                                                            

Physicians CSE                                                                            

Accountants CSE                                                                         

Software Code CSE                                                                     


Chapter 18. Determining CSE Operators for Social Sites and more:                                                                                                 

Github CSE Operators                                                               

LinkedIn CSE Operators                                                             

Slideshare CSE Operators                                                           

Reuters CSE Operators                                                                

RocketReach CSE                                                                       

Doximity CSE Operators                                                             

XING CSE Operators                                                                  

Meetup CSE Operators                                                                

ResearchGate CSE Operators                                                      

Google Scholar CSE Operators                                                   

HealthGrades CSE Operators                                                      

ZocDoc Doctors CSE Operators                                                 

SpeakerHub CSE Operators                                                        

Clustrmaps CSE Operators                                                          

In Summary                                                                                     


Appendix A. List of Our CSEs                                                       

Appendix B. Complete List of Google Search Operators            

About the Authors

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Irina Shamaeva is a well-known Talent Sourcer, Internet and OSINT Researcher, and Presenter who started a recruiting agency in 2003. Before that, she worked as a Software Developer and Manager and has a Master’s in Math with Honors. Irina wants to share cool Internet search techniques with everyone. She spends half of her time Sourcing for global clients and the rest training and speaking at conferences. Irina moderates the popular "Boolean Strings" communities on LinkedIn and Facebook.

David Galley is a practitioner and trainer in the field of Talent Sourcing and has been in the recruitment industry since 2005. A self-described "research nerd," he enjoys digging deep into technical details, discovering information others may have missed. David is Program Director at Sourcing Certifications, an online collection of Sourcing classes, and administers exams. He is always in search of new hacks.