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search multiple words on web pageDo you ever find yourself needing to search things on a webpage? The find function (CTRL+F) is an awesome keyboard shortcut and feature in browsers – chances are you already know about it and use it. However, you’re limited to one word as boolean search functions have yet to be added to browsers – a shame really.

So what do you do whenever you want to search multiple words? Well, what you’re probably doing right now is typing one word, and scrolling through the results and then typing the next word. This is what I did too, until I thought that surely some developer out there has created something to address this problem. And sure enough, when I went looking I found four awesome browser extensions, three for Chrome and one for Firefox that solved this issue once and for all.

SearchWP [Firefox]

search multiple words on web page

SearchWP, a Firefox addon, has been mentioned before on MakeUseOf 2 Great Addons To Improve Firefox's Search Bar 2 Great Addons To Improve Firefox's Search Bar Read More . works by using the existing search field at the top of your browser. Each word will be given a different color. You can toggle SearchWP, but clicking the “highlighter” icon seen next to the search box in the image. If you want to jump to a specific word, just click it in the search box. If there’s multiple instances of the same word, you can continue to click it to jump to each one throughout the page.

SearchWP doesn’t have too many settings, but you can adjust the minimum length that words need to be for them to be highlighted, and group the words in a single menu (pictured below)

search multiple words chrome

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In addition to being on the Firefox Add-Ons Page, SearchWP is also on Google Code. On here there is a How To/FAQ page, which covers interesting topics like how you can change the highlighting colors.

If you’re a keyboard shortcut fan, you can control SearchWP with the following shortcuts:

  • F3 – repeat the last jump-to-word search.
  • F8 – enable/disable the highlighting.
  • SHIFT + Click/SHIFT + F3/middle-click/right-click – reverse search order.
  • CTRL + Click/CTRL + F3 – search case-sensitive.

Pearls Extension [Chrome]

search multiple words chrome

Pearls Extension gives you the ability for quick search results on any webpage. It’s unique in that you can dedicate specific queries for a single page or domain, and it will remember them the next time you visit the page or domain. You can also enter queries for any page. Don’t be overwhelmed by the three text fields, though if you’re just looking to search multiple words on a webpage here or there – any field will work.

You can use the Previous and Next buttons to jump to the words throughout the webpage. The Exact/Partial button controls whether you want to search the words in the exact order their typed, or all of them scattered through the page. Lastly, you can toggle Pearls Extension with the Pearl On/Off button in the top right corner.

Currently, Pearls Extension doesn’t work in websites with frames, such as Gmail.

MultiHighlighter [Chrome]

search multiple words chrome

MultiHighlighter is another Chrome extension that allows multi-word searching and highlighting. Like other search tools, each term is given its own color. You don’t need to separate the words with a comma, instead just put a space between each one. To the right of the text field, there’s a box that displays the count of the number of matched terms appearing on the page.

To display the Multihighlighter search bar, click the icon or use the keyboard shortcut CTRL+SHIFT+A. To close the bar, click the “X” or press the escape key [ESC]. This extension looks fairly simple, but it actually has some really impressive features, such as preserving the highlighting when printing the page onto paper or to PDF. MultiHighlighter is being actively developed and more unique features will be added soon

Below are some important notes taken from MultiHighlighter’s Chrome Web Store Page:

  • Only words of 2 or more characters are searchable.
  • Search is currently not case-sensitive.
  • Redaction functionality is currently in-process.
  • Doesn’t work when viewing PDF documents in Chrome.

Stay up to date by following the group behind this project on Twitter and Facebook.

efTwo (F2) [Chrome]

search multiple words

efTwo is another option for searching multiple words simultaneously on a webpage. It also has several more options, giving you more control over its features. These can be seen in the image below.

search multiple words

The first one on the list, means that if you type something in the Google search, it will automatically be copied into the efTwo search box. Another great feature is each search term can easily be found with arrows along the right side of the screen.

search multiple words

The ease of using efTwo is really in the keyboard shortcuts. As you can see in the image below, you can access it with four different shortcuts:

  • Quickly hitting the ‘F’ key twice
  • F2
  • CTRL+ALT+F
  • CTRL+SHIFT+F

You might also notice in the image above that there is an experimental setting that connects the keywords with lines. I’m not exactly sure what the benefit of this is yet, but it is certainly interesting.

search multiple words on web page

Conclusion

Each of these tools have their different unique features. Unfortunately I was unable to find multiple extensions for Firefox, or any other browsers.

Which one(s) appeal the most to you? Feel free to provide us feedback on what you think after trying them and if there’s any others that we left out.

Image Credit: Search on keyboard via Shutterstock

  1. Jem
    July 29, 2016 at 4:03 pm

    I want something for Opera browser.

  2. sibrdoug
    November 16, 2015 at 5:46 pm

    I just tried efTwo in Chrome 46 and it doesn't work at all. The search dialog does not display using any of the shortcuts.

  3. GGross
    April 28, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    Only MultiHighlighter seems to work on Chrome 42.

  4. Upen
    February 13, 2015 at 8:37 am

    Thanks for the information. You just saved my day.

  5. shelby
    January 31, 2015 at 2:19 pm

    Thanks! You're awesome. I can see how this is helpful in a variety of applications, so I'm very excited to get started!

    • Aaron Couch
      January 31, 2015 at 3:22 pm

      Good to hear Shelby! Glad it helped :-)

  6. Guilherme
    December 1, 2013 at 12:12 am

    Hi!
    Thanks for sharring this stuff man.
    That's simply what i was looking for.

    Keep it up

    From: Brazil

    • Aaron C
      December 1, 2013 at 12:31 am

      Awesome man! Glad it helped out!

  7. Daniel
    October 29, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    I am looking for an extension that does the opposite. I mean I have a list of words and I want to know in an easy way, which of the words are not found on the web page. Anyone know of an extension that can do that?

    The best would be if you could get two results lists. One list with words found and the times found and the other list would be the words that were not found at all.

  8. Peter Smith
    September 24, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    Hi, interesting article and a few things to try..

    im after something "slightly" different...

    i visit a book forum and use a re-pagination addon to open up say 20-30 "pages" as one, giving me a long list of books/authors. I also have a list of favorite authors and it would be great if I could trigger a serach of a list of authors on the open page, highlighting any hits..? Any ideas anybody?

    • Aaron C
      September 24, 2013 at 7:35 pm

      Hi Peter, thanks for reading!

      If I understand your question right, I think that the tools in this article could do that — you can have multiple searches done at once. You just have to manually input each search, obviously, which is in this case author names.

      Does that help?

  9. rogel dias
    June 9, 2013 at 9:15 pm

    There is even a better mozilla add-on than the one mentioned by Terry. It is called "SearchWP" and can be found at http://code.google.com/p/searchwp/

    • Aaron Couch
      June 10, 2013 at 3:32 pm

      Well.. that's the one I wrote about in the article. Did you mean to share about a different one or did you overlook that?

    • saulius
      February 8, 2015 at 10:22 am

      Terry's application is able to match case and use regex and searchwp seems not. So in which way searchwp is better? Not sure.

  10. macwitty
    June 5, 2013 at 7:24 pm

    efTwo (F2) for Chrome was a good app. Esp the pdf search

  11. Terry Linsley
    June 5, 2013 at 5:13 am
    • Aaron Couch
      June 5, 2013 at 4:14 pm

      Hey that's not a bad one! Wish I would have found that. They don't have the word "search" anywhere in the name or description of the add-on, which is a shame because I bet more people would find and use it if they had.

      Thanks again for sharing Terry.

  12. Ivan Biolango
    June 5, 2013 at 12:49 am

    This is nice.

  13. Phuc Ngoc
    June 5, 2013 at 12:11 am

    So, which one did you choose, Aaron?

    • Aaron Couch
      June 5, 2013 at 12:52 am

      I felt efTwo fit my needs best.

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