How To Set Keyword Bookmarks In Google Chrome

Keyword bookmarks are my absolute favourite time-saving Firefox feature. I use them literally hundreds of times a day — a good system of keyword bookmarks saves all kinds of time in the browser. Unfortunately Chrome isn't so friendly to keyword bookmarkers.

After searching high and low for a way to tweak the bookmark dialog in Google Chrome to display an option to add a keyword to my bookmarks, turns out all I needed to do was turn to the help of a few clever readers who'd emailed in how to achieve keyword bookmark bliss in Chrome. The imperfect-but-workable solution:

I just realised that keyword bookmarking is as easy as managing your search engines. Right-click the omnibox (address bar), click "Edit search engines," and add a search engine. Use a Name you will recognise, enter the keyword you want to use, and just enter the URL for your bookmark in the URL box. Voila!

Chrome's keyword search tool, like Firefox's, replaces %s in the URL with your search terms. However, you can add a keyword search in Chrome without adding the %s bit at all, so when you execute that keyword, it'll just take you to the keyword's URL.

To clarify, check the screenshot above to how I set up a keyword bookmark for Lifehacker would look like. After setting it up, any time I want to visit Lifehacker in the future, all I have to do is type 'l' and hit Enter. Chrome's autocomplete is certainly smart, and for some people is enough to replace the need for keyword bookmarks, but if you're a keyword bookmark junkie like I am, this is an important feature to ease any browser transition.

Unfortunately it's more of a hack than a bookmark feature, and the search engine manager isn't nearly as robust as the regular bookmark manager, but until the Google developers decide to add this feature (my birthday's coming up, GOOG), it's better than nothing.

Thanks Cadence, Erik and Rupert!


    Actually stumbled across this a while ago. The only problem with this is that it must be a functional URL, so no fun times with Bookmarklets... At least not last time I checked.

    But the best use of keyword searches in Firefox is to put them all into Delicious. Chrome recently gained a Delicious plugin, but it doesn't support keyword searches saved in Delicious. Can't switch to Chrome until this happens!

    Note: Works only if the keyword does NOT contain spaces! Another discussion about accessing bookmarks without the mouse:

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