How to Search for Email in Outlook with Multiple Words?

Last Updated on December 8, 2023 by Amit Bansal

Are you tired of sifting through your Outlook inbox, trying to find that one email buried under hundreds of emails?

I’ve been there too, and I know it can be frustrating.

That’s why I’ve put together this no-nonsense guide to help you efficiently search for emails in Outlook using multiple words.

In this article, I’ll walk you through various methods to pinpoint those elusive emails using multiple keywords.

Search Email with Multiple Words in Outlook?

Without further ado, let’s dive into a step-by-step guide on how to locate emails using multiple keywords efficiently.

  1. Open Outlook Classic or New Outlook.
  2. Enter multiple words using ‘AND/OR‘ in the middle of keywords in the search bar.
  3. You will receive a list of results displaying emails that contain the specified words.

Usually, the search bar consists of criteria that work all your homework and bring the best-desired record on your screen, for some users it is required to find or narrow down the search criteria multiple words search comes into play.

search current mail box outlook

The search function in Outlook holds ‘AND/OR‘ search criteria, it’s quite simple if you search using the ‘And‘ word between two different keywords.

The result lists a resemblance to both the words that exist in the same subject mail (that means the mail subject required both the words you entered).

On the other hand, if you search using the ‘OR‘ word between two different keywords, The result lists a resemblance to either word (separately) that exists in the subject mail.

Let’s understand with an example

Choose your search folder and decide on the two keywords you want to search for. To simplify, let’s use ‘order AND zomato’ as an example. This will display emails in your list that contain both ‘order’ and ‘zomato’.

Type subject:”First keyword””space”AND”space“”Second keyword”

Search Multiple Keywords

When you enter ‘order OR zomato‘, the search will yield results that include either or both of these words in the subject line.

Search Multiple Keywords outlook

Note: It is especially important/mandatory to type ‘OR/AND’ in capital letters just to instruct Outlook to show the results according to the specific requirement. 

The method mentioned above swiftly provides the desired results, but occasionally, due to input errors, the outcomes might not meet your expectations.

Therefore, Outlook includes an advanced search feature that allows you to precisely specify your keywords, ensuring you get the exact results you’re looking for.

Use the Advanced Find Feature in Outlook

The Advanced Find feature in Outlook is another professional method for searching emails, offering precise results based on your input.

Let’s explore this feature step by step to understand how it works.

Open Outlook Classic on your desktop and navigate to the “Search” tab.

Next, click on the “Options” tab and select “Search Tools.” This will open a dropdown menu with several options. From the dropdown, choose “Advanced Find.

You can also access the Advanced Find dialog box directly by using the keyboard shortcut “Control (Ctrl) + Shift + F“. This shortcut allows you to skip the navigation steps.

That will open the Advance Find dialog box, within this dialog box, you will find various options to configure before accessing the desired folder and obtaining the results you are seeking.

First, begin by clicking on “Browse,” which will lead you to another dialog box. From there, select the folder you wish to search in, such as the Inbox.

Advance Find dialog box

Note:- You can only select folders from within a single Outlook data file. If you try to select multiple folders, you will receive the same message as a response.

Now, choose the “Advanced” tab from the three available options: “Messages,” “More Choices,” and “Advanced.”

Advance Find define more critiria

In the blank space below the field option under “Define More Criteria,” type “Subject.” [Ref: image above]

This action will enable the next option, “Condition,” where you should select “Contains.” In the value selection box, input your keyword, using “AND” in the middle of both the keyword, and then click “Add to List.

Here is the pattern to type:

Type subject:”First keyword””space”AND”space“”Second keyword”

Outlook value contain

You can review your inputs under “Find items that match these criteria.” For instance, I have entered the keywords “order AND zomato” as an example. Then, click on “Find Now.”

Finally, you will receive a list of emails that match your inputs at the bottom of that dialog box.

Outlook value contain find now

These are two methods I use to get the best results.

Basic Search Operators

When discussing the use of multiple keywords, it’s crucial to understand that Basic Search Operators serve as the fundamental building blocks. Let’s take a quick review of all of them.

Using ‘AND’, ‘OR’, and ‘NOT’

Searching for specific emails in Outlook can be complex with multiple keywords. To enhance efficiency, Outlook supports ‘AND,’ ‘OR,’ and ‘NOT’ operators. They help find messages with multiple conditions. For example, to find emails with “invoice” and “payment,” use:

invoice AND payment

However, if you want to find emails that contain either “invoice” or “payment”, you can use the ‘OR’ operator, as shown here:

invoice OR payment

To exclude a keyword, use the ‘NOT’ operator. If you want to find emails with the word “invoice” but without “payment”, you would write:

invoice NOT payment

Utilizing Quotation Marks for Exact Phrases

When searching for an exact phrase within Outlook, placing the phrase in quotation marks can be helpful. For example, if you want to find emails with the exact phrase “monthly report”, you would write the following:

"monthly report"

This approach narrows down your search results by focusing only on emails containing the specified phrase, rather than emails with the individual words scattered throughout.

Important Note: If you’re searching for emails with multiple words in the subject line using the “Search Bar“, this method works across all segments, including Outlook Web, New Outlook, and Outlook Classic. However, if you prefer to use the “Advanced Search Method“, please note that it has been removed from New Outlook and may not function in Outlook Web.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Frequently Asked Question

Does Outlook search time range?

Outlook can search email between dates range, but there is no option available to search the mail between a range.

How To Search Specific Phrases In Outlook?

The most effective way to search for a specific phrase in Outlook is by using the Search feature. below you will get an explanation in detail of how to search for a specific phrase in Outlook, and to be able to do this, you will need to know what a ‘Search Scope‘ is.

  • Open your Folder, for instance, “Inbox”
  • Type your specific phrase with quotes in the Search box [for example “Technical Onboarding Manager”].
How To Search Specific Phrase In Outlook

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Amit Bansal

Hello, my name is Amit Kumar Bansal, and I am the founder of MailSmartly.com. Through this blog, I focus on Microsoft Outlook, offering insightful and informative content. Additionally, I produce educational videos on YouTube to further enhance the understanding of my audience. visit my YouTube Channel

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