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Get the edge with Advanced Googling

Discover how to use advanced Google search techniques, also known as Google Dorks, for powerful and efficient competitor research. Uncover valuable insights into your rivals' strategies, products, and marketing materials to stay ahead of the competition. Master search operators and create targeted queries to unlock a wealth of information at your fingertips.

May 4, 2023

Why read this?

Competitor research is a crucial aspect of winning customers. Having a deep understanding of your rivals' strengths and weaknesses helps you position yourself. Many businesses are unaware that they can use advanced Google search techniques, also known as Google Dorks, to uncover a wealth of information about their competitors.

In my personal experience, I have found deal-winning resources including Competitors:

  • Pricing

  • Entire Presentations

  • Product Roadmaps

  • Detailed Feature Documentation

  • Detailed Proposals

  • Help Guides that highlighted key weaknesses

  • Service Level Tracking pages with poor resolution times

This article will guide you on how to leverage Google Dorks for competitor research, even if you're unfamiliar with the term.

What are Google Dorks?

Google Dorks are advanced search queries that leverage Google's search operators to refine search results and find specific information. By using Google Dorks, you can target your searches to locate precisely what you're seeking, making your competitor research more efficient and effective.


Hacker's Weapon to Sales Research Tool

Before diving into advanced Googling for competitor research, I wanted to quickly highlight the raw power of Google Dorks and their history. In 2014, hackers exploited a database called the Google Hacking Database (GHDB) to make millions of dollars. GHDB was a collection of Google Dorks that could be used to find sensitive information and vulnerabilities in websites.

During this high-profile event, hackers were able to efficiently sift through the entire internet to find exposed organisations. They targeted various prominent companies, including Adobe, JPMorgan, and Yahoo, revealing sensitive data and causing significant financial losses. By exploiting Google Dorks, the attackers were able to identify vulnerabilities in these companies' online systems and access confidential information.

While this incident demonstrated the potential misuse of Google Dorks, it also showcased the incredible power of these advanced search techniques. Today, businesses can harness the capabilities of Google Dorks to gain valuable insights into their competitors and gain leverage in competitive deals.

As you explore the world of Google Dorks for competitor research, remember that you're leveraging a powerful tool with a remarkable history. Use these techniques responsibly to unlock public information to stay ahead of the competition.


Using Advanced Google Search Techniques for Competitor Research


Exact Search

Improve the quality of your search outcomes by using quotation marks ("") for precise phrase matching and the "+" operator for broader results that include multiple search terms.


Title Search

Use the intitle operator to search for documents with specific keywords in the title.


File Type Search

Target specific document formats with "filetype:" operator to uncover hidden gems like pitch decks, pricing, and product roadmaps.

This search will return PDF files from your competitor's website that contain the phrase "roadmap"


Site Search

The "site:" operator allows you to search within a specific domain. This can be useful for finding information about a competitor's products, services, or other key aspects of their business. For example:

This query will return results only from your competitor's website, containing the phrase "product features."


Time

By default, Google search displays results from all time periods. However, you can narrow your search to a specific timeframe to find the most recent or relevant competitor sales presentations and resources. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Once the search results appear, click on 'Tools' below the Google search bar.

  2. In the 'Any time' dropdown menu, you can select from various predefined timeframes (such as Past hour, Past 24 hours, Past week, Past month, or Past year), or click on 'Custom range' to specify your own date range.


Advanced Searches with Multiple Operators

You can combine multiple operators to create even more targeted searches. For instance, you can search for multiple file types at once:

This query searches for files with the title "Salesforce" in various file formats (PowerPoint, PDF, Word) on "salesforce.com" that include the term "ROI".


Go further than the competition

Advanced Google search techniques offer a powerful and efficient way to conduct competitor research, providing valuable insights into their strategies, products, and marketing materials. By mastering search operators and creating targeted queries, you can stay ahead of the competition and make informed decisions for your business. Begin harnessing the power of advanced Google search techniques today and unlock a wealth of information at your fingertips.


Be sure to download the full list of 20+ Google Dorks here:


Tips for Effective Google Dorking

Be specific and targeted: Use industry-specific keywords and phrases to find the most relevant information about your competitors.

  • Experiment with different search operators: Familiarise yourself with various search operators, and practice combining them for more refined and powerful searches. Download the full list below to get a more complete arsenal.

  • Document your findings: Keep track of the information you gather from a competitor and store it in a structured manner, making it easy to reference and analyse later. As it may well disappear by the next time you look.

  • Be persistent and patient: Keep trying different search queries and operators until you find the information you're looking for, as it may not be immediately apparent.


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