The use of the * Asterisk Placeholder in finding the right Collocation

It’s time to start our #GooglingForTranslators English Series!

 

This series offers valuable hacks for translators to increase their ‘Feeling Lucky‘ translation results while boosting their googling skills (linguistically-wise).

 

A) The * Asterisk Operator: Helpful in “finding the right collocation” (For the Arabic Version of this Article Click here).

 

How?

 

The * is used ‘to fill in the blank in search phrases’

 

– A Collocation is ‘the company that words keep’ (Related! Right?)

 

e.g. 1: – Write on google “* Accident” or “Accident *”

 

– Results in bold: Compulsory accident

 

– Report an accident

 

– Concerned in the accident etc.

 

PS: After updating the Google algorithms, it is better to use the * sign inside a long-quoted sentence/ phrase to receive better results.

 

Also, remember that you can use more than one * sign in a single search attempt but add a white-space after each of them.

 

Every * represents just one or more words as Google treats it as a placeholder for a word or more.

 

e.g. 2: – Write on google “* with the law”

 

– Results in bold: comply with the law

 

– in accordance with the law

 

– The court agreed with the law

 

– in conflict with the law …etc.

 

The * helps us also in finding the right proverbs, quotes & idioms + any Biblical and/or Quranic verses.

 

Even in finding headline variants for our marketing purposes; the * can be an asset to get a bunch of rewarding results.

 

e.g. 3: – Write on google “Helping you * * *” and the results in bold will be rewarding!!

 

Want more? Please stay tuned!

Shaimaa Riad

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