Ever cared to experiment with your browser to use it to it’s full potential? There are an array of small features a browser has but we never care to look into them. We tend to use the shortcut ways to perform a particular task like searching meaning of a word, search on a search engine or wikipedia, translating.. etc. These are minor tasks which we perform regularly but it make life difficult we use a third party site for them. We can actually do all those things directly from our browser.

I will post a series of posts called ‘”Browsers’ Secrets” which will contain tips, tricks and settings hence, it is bound to make a big difference on how you will use your browser then.

Use search directly from the address bar.

Firefox and Opera users:

  1. Click on the current search engine icon on the search toolbar.
  2. Get to the bottom of the list that appears, then select Manage search engines.
  3. Select the search engine you mostly use and click on Edit Keyword (Firefox) or Edit (Opera)
  4. Type in the keyword you want to assign to the search engine and hit Enter or Ok.
  5. Now you can use the address bar to use the search engine you assigned. Example: wiki asian history performs a search for asian history using the Wikipedia search.

Chrome users:

  1. Right-click on the URL bar and select edit search engines from the list
  2. Select the search engine. note that the search engines you have used are stored in your history and are displayed in this list. it gets deleted when you clear the history.
  3. Click edit and replace the keyword with a new one.

Now you can use the address bar to use the search engine you assigned. Example: yahoo [today’s news] performs a search for [today’s news]using the Yahoo! search. If you edit a keyword for a search engine you used but havent added to the list manually, it gets stored in your profile and clearing the history doesn’t remove it. This is a way of adding a search engine to the list.

Add a new search engine:


  1. Right click on the text-field of the search engine you want to add.
  2. Type in the search engine name, or use the suggested name and give a keyword you want to assign and hit ‘Enter’ or ‘Ok’.
  3. The new search engine is ready for use.


You cannot directly add a new search engine like you did in Opera or Chrome (without the use of addons) but you can use shortcuts to the search engine to directly use them from the address bar.

  1. Right click on the text-field of the search engine you want create a shortcut for and select Add a Keyword for this search from the menu.
  2. Type in the name or use the suggested name, type in the keyword, and choose a folder to add the bookmark into. Hit Ok or Enter.

Now you can use the keyword the same way you did for the search engines installed on your browser. If you want to add a search engine that shows up in the search toolbar, you might want to consider this add-on.


Chrome adds a search engine automatically when you perform a search using it. But this gets deleted when you clear your browsing history. You have to manually add an engine if you want to instal it permanently. Follow the exact same steps that you would for editing the search engine keyword. Edit the temporary search’s keyword and it gets stored permanently in your profile.
You now also can set it as a default or use it directly from the address bar.

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