Examples for Searching Effectively

For best results, use single words or phrases separated by commas. You must use commas to separate your search terms otherwise all of the words must be present in a record to be considered a match. For example, someone working for an engineering firm might enter the search terms:
engineering services, project management, construction

These search terms return records that contain the words engineering and services, or the words project and management, or the word construction.

You should note that bidsUSA uses a process known as stemming which reduces keywords to their stem, root or base form when conducting searches. Stemming allows you to conduct searches that return highly relevant matches that would otherwise be missed. bidsUSA offers three variations of stemming: Heavy, Medium and Light. For more information on stemming see Stemming.

If bidsUSA can't identify a specific state or region for a RFP, it will still include it in your search results based on your search terms. This is done to ensure that you don't miss opportunities. You should note that RFPs from Federal Business Opportunities (FedBizOpps) frequently do not identify a specific state or region. If you're receiving too many results that indicate that the "state/region could not be determined", you can override this default behavior by simply clicking the "Only show results that identify a specific state or region" checkbox.

Examples

Operator Description Example Example search result
Comma (,) between words Finds records containing at least one of the words specified. photocopier, computer, printer Returns records that contain the word photocopier, or computer, or printer.
Space ( ) between words Finds records containing all of the words specified. computer printer Returns records that contain the words computer and printer.
Double quotation marks (") with a single word Placing a word in double quotation marks finds only exact matches and excludes stemmed variations of the word. "printer" Returns records that contain the word printer with no variations such as print, printers or printing.
Double quotation marks (") with multiple words (phrases) Placing multiple words (phrases) in double quotation marks finds only exact matches of the phrase and excludes stemmed variations of any of the words. "engineering service" Returns records that contain only the exact phrase engineering service with no variations such as engineer services or engineering services.
<NOT> Finds records containing the word preceding it and excludes records containing the word following it. computer <NOT> printer Returns records that contain the word computer but not the word printer.
<NOT> with parentheses Finds records containing words enclosed in parentheses preceding <NOT> and excluding records containing the word following <NOT>. (construction, engineering) <NOT> renovation Returns records that contain the words construction or engineering but not the word renovation or variations of the word renovation (depends on stemming).
Multiple <NOT> with parentheses Finds records containing words enclosed in parentheses preceding <NOT> and excluding records containing the words enclosed in parentheses following <NOT>. (construction, engineering) <NOT> (renovation, services) Returns records that contain the words construction or engineering but not the words renovation or services or variations of the words renovation or services (depends on stemming).
<CASE> Finds records containing the word in the exact case (lowercase or uppercase) as specified. <CASE>GIS Returns only records that contain the acronym GIS in uppercase (not lowercase gis). Note that <CASE> operates on the entire string. For example, <CASE>GIS Data returns different results than <CASE>GIS data. You may want to consider a construct such as <CASE>GIS data<NOT><CASE>gis to get the desired results.

If you're receiving too many, too few or confusing results from bidsUSA please see:
Optimize Your Saved Search Criteria.