Use Firefox keyword searches to speed browsing

Firefox logo

Via the wonderful Lifehacker, I discovered a feature of Firefox that I can’t believe I didn’t know about before. You can create keywords for search boxes on pretty much any Web page and then, when you invoke the keyword in the Firefox address bar, the browser will automatically execute a search on that site automatically. Here’s what I mean, using Google Maps as an example:

  1. Go to Google Maps using Firefox.
  2. Right-click in the Search box at the top of the screen.
  3. From the menu, select “Add a Keyword for this Search…”
  4. Type anything you want in the Name box (I used “Google Maps”), and then type a keyword for the Google Maps search box in the Keyword box (I used “gmaps”).
  5. Now go to any other Web site, just so you get off the Google Maps site.
  6. Click inside the Firefox address bar (or press CTRL‑L on Windows, Command‑L on OSX).
  7. To search for my company’s world headquarters, type “gmaps 306 florida ave nw washington dc”, and his return.
  8. You’ll be taken to the Google Maps page and the location of our offices will be displayed for you!

Isn’t that incredibly easy? This method works for any search on any Web site and it really eliminates a lot of clicking around.