How to Restrict Your Google Search to Specific Domains

Easy Google Trick to Find Better Results

Many website addresses end in ".com," but many other such suffixes—which indicate top-level domains (TLDs)—exist. Some of the most common include:

  • .net (an alternative to .com)
  • .org (typically for but not restricted to non-profit organizations)
  • .gov (for government sites)
  • .edu (for educational institutions)
  • .mil (for the military)
  •,,, etc. (country-specific domains)

An unrestricted Google search checks across all available domains for your search terms, which can yield results that aren't specific enough for your needs.

One way to make your search more relevant is to restrict it to a certain domain.

TLD-Specific Searches

To search a certain TLD, simply precede it with site:, followed by the TLD and the term you're searching on.

For example, say you're looking for information about textbooks, but you don't want to buy a textbook. An internet-wide search would show you mostly websites selling textbooks. To get non-commercial results​ about educational textbooks instead, try confining your search to the .edu TLD, like this:

site:edu textbook

You can use this method to restrict searches to any TLD.

Domain-Specific Searches

Taking this a step further, you also can search within any second- or third-level domain, as well. For example, if you'd like to see what has on the topic of artificial intelligence, you'd type the following into the search bar: "artificial intelligence"

Note the quotation marks: They tell Google to use their contents as a phrase, rather than separate words, in the search.

This means you won't get results that have "artificial" but not "intelligence." (Google provides many other ways to tailor your searches, too, such as boolean searches and wildcard searches.)

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