Find Command

Tutorial Directory

How can you efficiently locate a word or words on a Web page?


Have you ever opened a Web page only to groan as you scroll through text that seems to go on forever? How can you find the keywords you're after? This is an occasion for the Find command. In the browser (Firefox, Chrome, etc.), under the Edit pull down menu, is an option called Find.

Keyboard shortcut (all browsers): Ctrl+f (hold down the control key and tap f)
The Find command lets you enter a word. Each time you push the Enter/Return button on your keyboard or click the Find button, that word will be found and highlighted in the text on the Web page you are reading. This makes it very easy to find the keyword you are looking for without having to scan long passages.

  1. Click the "Edit" menu item at the top of your browser.
  2. Then select the "Find on this page" (Internet Explorer) or "Find in this page" (Firefox) command.
  3. When the dialog box appears, type the term you want to find and tap your Enter key.
  4. Click the "Find Next" button to locate the next occurrence of the term in the page.

Why would you want to use the Find Command?

Screen shot of Firefox edit menu with Find in this Page Highlighed

Scanning pages visually can be time consuming and inaccurate. Using this automated feature of your browser can save you time and help ensure that you don't miss important information, especially if the page is long and involved.

One qualification, the Find command only works if the Web page is text based and not tied up in frames or complicated tables. It's true that the Find command USUALLY works, but sometimes it takes an old-fashioned scan to find the information you seek. Use the Find command as a convenient power tool. Also do a quick visual scan to check for appropriate information before dismissing a site as irrelevant.

Try it! Use the Find Command to locate instances of "it" on this page. How many times does the word "it" appear on this page?

Authored by Dennis O'Connor 2003-2005 | Revised by Carl Heine 2021