Searching for Foreign Websites
June 9, 2012 5:07 PM   Subscribe

How do I search and get results from foreign websites? Even when I search for French material using, I still get results mostly from American sites. How do I get mostly French sites? Let's say I wanted to find out what movies are playing at an art house theater in Paris, how would I get access to results from France or say Spain. Thanks!
posted by lrnarabic to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Just a guess, but Google first shows me results in my country that are close to my location, i.e. if I google the name of a bank or store you'd find in any German city, I first see the results close to my hometown. Therefore, I suggest you hide your IP or fake a French/Spanish/whatever you're searching for IP.
posted by MinusCelsius at 5:16 PM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Type "" at the end of your search to get results restricted to websites ending in .fr
posted by Paragon at 5:20 PM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Pay attention to notices such as these: "Conseil : Recherchez des résultats uniquement en français. Vous pouvez indiquer votre langue de recherche sur la page Préférences".
posted by acidic at 5:34 PM on June 9, 2012 [2 favorites]

Add some really common French words like que, le and et to your search terms.
posted by nangar at 5:36 PM on June 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

I don’t know if this helps, Google’s explanation.
posted by bongo_x at 5:48 PM on June 9, 2012

Find a proxy in your country of choice. Use it. If you ever use TOR, you can see this happen every now and again.
posted by oceanjesse at 7:47 PM on June 9, 2012

You can change your location and desired language results on Google's preferences page.
posted by ob1quixote at 8:35 PM on June 9, 2012 [3 favorites]

VPN through France. So many of these things use IP geolocation to affect results, you'll never get results like ones that someone actually in that country gets unless the search engine thinks you actually are there.

For fun, this can be used in the opposite direction while travelling. VPN through the US and you avoid automatically getting results in foreign languages or getting security warnings when you log into Facebook, etc.
posted by tylerkaraszewski at 8:59 PM on June 9, 2012

In addition to the excellent suggestions above, one trick I have found useful sometimes is to simply add the name of the country to the search query, with the thought that it may appear as part of the contact address on the website.
posted by aroberge at 4:23 AM on June 10, 2012

Google Translated Search is what you're looking for. It translates your query into the other language, than searches for that, then translates the results back.

To find it, do the search in English, then scroll down the bar on the left, open More below Shopping, then hit Translated foreign pages.
posted by chrispy108 at 7:41 AM on June 10, 2012

Try changing the part of the search URL that says "hl=en" to "hl=fr". Won't be as good as using a proxy or changing your account settings, but it's a lot easier and should get you most of the way there.
posted by 23 at 5:14 PM on June 10, 2012

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