Caleb Schoepp

Chrome Shortcuts I Use Everyday

Published May 17, 2022

My favorite web browser is Google Chrome. I want to share with you some of the shortcuts that I use everyday. It’s too dramatic to say that I couldn’t live without them, but, it is accurate to say that they make my life way better.

You’re going to notice lots of these shortcuts are only avoiding relatively easy mouse movements. For example pressing CTRL + T instead of moving your mouse to the plus sign for new tabs and clicking it. At first glance this optimization seems like overkill. However, when you consider that most knowledge workers spend hours of their day in a browser the math starts to add up on the time saved.

Opening and closing tabs

Press Ctrl + t to open a new tab. Press Ctrl + w to close the current tab.

Of all the shortcuts in Chrome, I easily use these the most. Like everyone else I always have a million tabs open. This saves me from constantly moving my mouse up to the top of the browser to open or close tabs.

New window / new incognito

Press Ctrl + n to open a new window. Press Ctrl + Shift + n to open a new incognito tab.

Sometimes you need to open a new window instead of just a tab. For example, I’ll often put some reference documentation up in a different window that I can drag on to my second monitor. Also, as a developer easily being able to pull up an incognito window is great for testing. Incognito windows start from a clean state and make it easier to test things like cookies.

Reopen tabs

Press Ctrl + Shift + t to reopen previously closed tabs in the order they were closed.

This is my favorite shortcut — it was a total game changer when I learned about it. With this shortcut you no longer need to worry about painstakingly reopening all your tabs when you accidentally close your Chrome window.

Press Ctrl + Tab or Ctrl + Shift + Tab to navigate through your open tabs.

I’ll often use this when I have a number of tabs that I need to flip through to compare and I don’t have enough screen real estate to put them all side-by-side.

Open previous or next page

Press Alt + Left Arrow to open the previous page. Press Alt + Right Arrow to open the next page.

You save a surprising amount of time using these shortcuts instead of always clicking the back button. Especially when you’re in a googling frenzy and peaking into different search results as you try to answer your question.

Search on page

Press Ctrl + f to bring up a search bar. Type your search term into the search bar. Use Enter and Shift + Enter to navigate through the search results.

Pretty hard to imagine that you don’t know this one. But, using this can really save you a lot of time. Anytime you’re scrolling for something you know is on the page try searching for it.

Jump to address bar

Press Ctrl + l to jump to the address bar.

Another one I use all the time. With Google built into the address bar this shortcut is basically my “Google it” shortcut.

I love opening links in new tabs. Combined with the shortcuts to navigate between tabs this is really powerful.

Developer tools

Press F12 to open the developer tools. Press Ctrl + Shift + c and click on the webpage somewhere to bring up the DOM focused on that element.

These ones are handy if you do lots of web development. Stop bothering to right click to get into the developer tools.

Hard refresh

Press Ctrl + Shift + r to perform a hard refresh.

Another pro tip for web developers. If you want to reload everything (don’t cache CSS etc.) you can do a hard refresh.

Bonus: Tab through search results

Press Tab to cycle through Google search results. Press Enter to navigate to a search result.

If you install this extension then you can tab through Google search results. This has exponentially sped up my googling. I can keep my hands on the keyboard for an entire Google search.

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