If your initial search query does not produce the desired results, try:
Keep search queries simple and descriptive; use as few terms as possible. Avoid natural language queries as they can limit your results--use colorado statehood instead of when did colorado first become a state.
Use double quotation marks ("Barack Obama") to search terms as a phrase and narrow your results. Remember that a search of "Barack Hussein Obama" will retrieve only those pieces of information that refer to Barack Hussein Obama, exactly like that; citations that refer to him as simply 'Barack Obama' will not be retrieved.
In Google, use site: to limit your results to a specific website or website domain. The query cloning site:gov will only retrieve information about cloning from U.S. Government websites.
In Google, to remove unwanted search terms, place an - in front of the term you don't want. For example: eclipse -solar will find information on eclipses, but not solar eclipses.
To search for synonyms, use the OR operator. In Google, the OR operator must be in all caps. A query on hotel OR lodging OR inn directories will retrieve any or all of the types of these words.
A query on child retrieves results with 'children" and "childcare". Google automatically truncates search terms. To prevent automatic truncation, use a + sign in front of each term: +child. Library databases do not automatically truncate--you'll need to use help to figure out the symbol used to truncate, OR think of all word endings you'd like to include, and search them, on the same line, connected with OR.