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Browser keywords: using the address bar as a command line

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Keywords are commands you can enter in the browser address bar to quickly go to a website and perform, say, a search.


I’ve created the following keywords on my Firefox:
  • “gg foo” googles for “foo”
  • “we foo” searches Wikipedia for “foo”
  • “dict panache” looks up “panache” in an online dictionary
  • “imdb inception” looks up “inception” in IMDB.

How it works

Keywords work as follows. Given the keyword command
    we foo
This command goes to the URL
It does so, because there is a bookmark whose keyword is we and whose URL is
Henceforth, typing the keyword looks for this bookmark and replaces %s with the argument after we.


  • Keywords in Google Chrome: “Preferences → Basics → Search → Manage Search Engines...”
  • Keywords in Firefox: Go to the properties of a bookmark and set a value for “Keyword”.
  • Keyboard shortcuts that work in most browsers:
    • Ctrl-T (Mac: Cmd-T) opens a new tab.
    • Ctrl-L (Mac: Cmd-L) gets you to the address bar.


  • Lifehacker explains the basics of keywords.
  • Mozilla describes the “add a keyword for this search” feature.