How to View Google Search History

By Kenneth W. Michael Wills

Google offers consumers using their search engine, a free service allowing those consumers to view previous search histories. The service, called Web History, allows consumers to monitor trends in Internet activity, locate forgotten website URL’s and manage Web activity such as deleting searches and websites for convenience. Google Web History automatically enables by default when an individual signs up for any Google account, such as Gmail. Viewing your Google search history requires you to log into your Google account because all information related to your Web history is on the Google servers, rather than on your computer.

Things You'll Need

  • Google account

Step 1

Sign into your Google account by visiting the Google home page and clicking on the “Sign In” link in the upper right corner of the page. When the sign-in page loads, input your user name and password, and then click the “Sign In” button.

Step 2

Click on "Settings" in the top right corner of the page, and then click on the Google Account Settings Link. Scroll down the page to the section "Try Something New" and click on the Web History link. This link will take you to your customized Web history page. Google stores two types of searches in your Web history. The first type consists of all data stored related to searches while signed into Google. The second type stores all Google searches, using a cookie, when signed out. When using Web History, Google may ask you to sign in more than once. This is due to privacy and Google wanting to verify the account user.

Step 3

Review your search history once you land on your customized Web History page. Google stores up to 180 days of information on searches performed while signed out. Searches performed while signed in, is unlimited. From you Web History page, you may also delete search items, change your search preferences, stop your search history, or remove Google Web History from your account. Google also will provide recommended search queries based on your previous searches. You may also filter your search results by using the search options panel in the top menu.

Tips & Warnings

  • In addition to Web pages, Google will provide results for image searched, videos searched and news stories you have viewed in the past. This particular service does take time to work adequately in order to prove a big impact, as far as providing a good overall picture of your search habits and recommending meaningful search strings. This usually takes about six months.