As a virtual assistant, I spend a hefty chunk of my time working within my internet browser – and over the years as more and more businesses become cloud based, this online time has become an even bigger part of my day and so I like to keep a small bag of time saving tools to use to make my online time even slicker.

Did you know that the Google Chrome browser is full of hidden shortcuts and not-so-well-known functions that could save you a barrel of time, and greatly improve workflow rates? Here’s a list of my favourite Google Chrome shortcuts for Virtual Assistants:

  1. Manage multiple tabs at once by holding SHIFT + clicking the tabs you want to manage. You’ll see they will all be highlighted, and you can then manage them in the same way you would a single tab on it’s own. Try clicking and dragging to move them all to a new browser window, or close them all at once by pressing CTRL+W
  2. Reopen lost tabs with no fuss. How annoying is it when you are quickly clicking between tabs, and close one by mistake, logging you out of your web session or losing that great bit of information you had researched for a client before you had time to note the URL. Don’t break your workflow by having to stop and reopen all of your windows. Simply press CTRL+SHIFT+T to reopen it immediately. Keep pressing this combination to reopen all previous tabs that were closed, in the reverse order that you closed them.
  3. The Search Shortcut. Have you ever seen the search shortcut in the right-click menu? No need to bother with copying and pasting information into your search engine, from any webpage simply highlight the information you would like to search for, right clock and choose the “search for [your search term here]”. as if by magic, your search will open in a new tab!Chrome Power User Tip (1)
  4. Streamline your bookmarks bar. You can toggle your bookmarks bar on and off by clicking CTRL+SHIFT+B. Keeping your most commonly accessed websites here can save you bags of time. Once you’ve added a site to the book marks bar, try right-click > edit and deleting the name then press ok. You’ll be left with just the icon on your bookmarks bar, giving a lovely clean look as well as creating space for plenty more bookmarked sites! Chrome Power User Tip (7)
    Chrome Power User Tip (8)
  5. Do away with scrolling, and use you space bar to move a webpage down one screen at a time. Did you know that you can also use SHIFT+ space bar to move upwards one screen at a time too.
  6. Copy or move a downloaded file to a folder in your documents quickly and easily simply by dragging and dropping it from the downloads bar to where ever you need it to go.Try this out by left clicking and dragging the file to your desktop. You can also view the downloaded file in location by right clicking and choosing ‘show in folder’Chrome Power User Tip (6)
  7. It’s even a file explorer! Just when you thought that Chrome couldn’t do any more for you… it turns out you can even use it to search for files on your computer! Try typing C:/ followed by return to use Chrome as a basic file explorer.Chrome Power User Tip (5)
  8. Customise your search engines. Of course, as a search engine first and foremost, you won’t be surprised to know about the tonne of cool search functions within Google Chrome! Did you know that you can set up your own custom sites to search in? For example you can search your Google Drive account straight from the search box in Chrome? All you need to do is set Google Drive as a custom search engine.
    • From within the browser bar, right-click and select “Edit search engines”Chrome Power User Tip (4)
    • Scroll down to the bottom and select “Add a new search engine”
    • Name it “Google Drive” and the keyword “Drive” (or use whichever keyword you would like)
    • Under URL, enter http://drive.google.com/?hl=en&tab=bo#search/%s
    • Click “Done”Chrome Power User Tip (2)
    • Once this is done, simply type your keyword (in this case, “drive”), followed by the tab key and then type in the name of the file you are looking for
    • Press enter and you’ll seen Google search the contents of your drive to find the file you are looking for

Are there any cool power user tips missing from this list? Drop us a comment below to share your favourites.

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