Almost every user and especially peoples from the SEO field, make at least one daily visit to Google. In time all the power searchers feel the need to enhance their experience with useful addons. Fortunately Firefox users have the chance to tune their favourite search engine. Using an ego search, here is my personal list of Google steroids:
1. First of all get a Google account .
This will give you acess to Google Personalized Search. Using this you will get:
- View and manage your past searches.Browse and search over your past searches, including the web pages, images, and news headlines you’ve clicked on. You can remove items from your Search History at any time.
- Create bookmarks you can access anywhere.Bookmark your favorite websites and add labels and notes to them. Your labels and notes are searchable later, and you can access your bookmarks from any computer by signing in.
After you log in start tagging your search history, and the labels you use will show up on page results helping you to quick locate the results you have used before.
More details about this on:
- Google Help Center
- Google Personalized Search Leaves Google Labs
- Google My Search History Personalizes the Web
2. Install BetterSearch extension for Firefox.
This will enhance not only Google but also a few other search engines:
According to the official homepage, BetterSearch is :
An extension for Firefox which enhances Google (all international flavours, too), MSN Search, Yahoo Search, A9, Answers.com (web results), AllTheWeb, del.icio.us and Simpy.com by adding previews (thumbnails) and Amazon product images and info (type, price, rating for US/DE/UK/CA/FR products), a quick preview feature as well as “Open in New Window”, “Site Info” and “Wayback Machine” links to the search results.
This extension will allow you to open search results in the same page for a quick overview using an iframe. See screenshot.
3. Install Bumble Search extension for Firefox.
This extension has just been released and it offers a lot of useful features like:
- Customise Google. Google is extended to include a diverse range of specialised search engines, optionally remove commercial results, and enable new methods for digging deeper into promising results.
- Sidebar: Notes & Searching. A discreet Firefox sidebar grants you rapid access to Google or MSN, and gives you space to make quick notes on interesting pages you’ve found. Notably, it also introduces two highly unique search techniques for finding additional worthwhile webpages – related to a group of pages you’ve already discovered. Thus letting you search confidently at your own pace, whilst locating pages you would not normally uncover.
This short description shows only a small part of the full functionalities it brings to the user. Check the screenshot for more in depth details.
I also liked a particular line from the extension’s homepage:
Bumble Search is in the relatively unchartered area of modifying websites (such as Google).
We recognise that utmost care must be taken to respect the needs and intentions of the original authors.
In the case of Google:
- The modifications benefit everyone.
- Google does not lose visitors to competing search engines; and people can see Google’s benefits in comparison.
This ethic side is something that another popular firefox extension should learn. You cannot base your business on screwing those that feed you. Especially by giving users a broken condom (blocking Google Analytics will not protect web users privacy).
4. Get the Greasemonkey extension for Firefox.
Greasemonkey is a Firefox extension which lets you to add bits of DHTML (“user scripts”) to any web page to change its behavior. In much the same way that user CSS lets you take control of a web page’s style, user scripts let you easily control any aspect of a web page’s design or interaction.
After you have installed it, go get some scripts to enhance your browsing from UserScripts.org. You can find all the Google Scripts here. One of the most useful scripts and which is used in th the screenshot is Google Counter. This script will put a number near all the results allowing you to quickly determine a website position in SERPs. To get the full use of this you can tweak Google to show more than 10 results per page.
After 4 simple steps you can consider yourself now a power searcher.
Enjoy your searching!
All the Firefox Extensions mentioned above fully work on Firefox 1.5 but haven’t been tested on previous versions.