From the ATO
Use these tips to help find content on ATO website quickly and easily
- Keep it simple – don't include common words such as ‘the’ and ‘it’ in your search.
- One word says it all – variants of many words are included in your search results. For example, a search for “apply” will return results containing “applies”, “applying” and “application”.
- In any case – search is not case sensitive.
Smart search terms get better results
- Use a word or a phrase – whichever fits best.
- General terms return general information – searching for “tax” will give you more results than searching for “capital gains tax”.
- Specific terms return specific information – searching for “capital gains tax” will give you fewer results than searching for “tax”.
- Choose words carefully – if you’re looking to invest in real estate, try different searches, like “buy a house”, “rental property” or “investment property”.
- Check your search term in the A to Z list – this list provides key content in alphabetical order to help you identify the best term to use in your search.
- Look for search suggestions as they drop down – these are popular words and phrases other people have used to search our website.
- Look for content suggestions – these appear for popular content items after the search suggestions, under the heading “Take me straight to …”.
Other smart ways to search
- Use a NAT number or Quick Code (QC) – we put NAT numbers on our print documents and QC numbers on our web pages. You can type these directly into the search area when looking for a form or document. For example, you can search “NAT 1006” for the Fortnightly tax table or “QC 16161” for the Tax file number declaration.
- Filter results to your circumstances – use the tabs next to “All” to quickly find tools & calculators, rates & codes, forms & publications, or legal database results related to your search.
- Advanced search for ABN, forms, calculators, tax tables, media releases and order publications – if you search for one of these terms, an advanced search box will pop up to help you find exactly what you are looking for.
Still no luck? Try these smart strategies
- Correct spelling – make sure you have spelt all search terms correctly.
- Try different search terms – is there another way to describe the information you are searching for?
- Try more general search terms – taking a step back can sometimes help clarify your search.
- Check the breadcrumbs – at the end of each search result is a “breadcrumb trail” which can help you work out if the document is the one you need. For example, a search for “income tax return” might give you a breadcrumb trail of “forms” or “business/yearly-reports-and-returns” or “non-profit/tax-statements-and-returns”.
- Use bookmarks – if you know you’ll be using a specific page or form regularly you can add a bookmark, which will take you directly to the same page each time.
Source: ATO – Your guide to smarter searching