Important Tips for Effective Patent Searching

Effective and comprehensive patent searching is important because, without it, you may risk rejection at the end of the process. With the advent of free internet access it has become quite easy for inventors or patent search professionals these days to assess the state of the art of their invention; still, they need to consider the fact is that the way of search is evolving and hence searchers need to adapt themselves as per the changing norms.

With this article, we have come up with some important tips that can help patent search professionals do an effective patent searching for their intended invention (s). Without much ado let’s go through those points.

Important Tips for Effective Patent Searching patent searching

Semantic Search- Semantic search is a new concept that has come into existence in last few years and is being used by almost all the search engines and databases. The aim of semantic search is to understand the intent of the searchers rather than merely interpreting the textual keyword. Though most of the patent search databases have inbuilt semantic search feature still, it is important for the searcher to ensure that they do best on their part to ensure it.        patent searching

The best way to ensure a semantic patent search is to understand the context of the invention and preparing search terms that can cover the context of the invention comprehensively. To achieve this, individuals doing patent searching need to identify synonyms that might be used for their intended invention(s).

Incorporating Metadata- Patents are structured documents that contain various bibliographic data that can help individuals identify and understand the invention covered by the respective patent(s). We can use this data as a search criterion to make our patent searching process more effective.

For example, patent documents contain bibliographic data like patent number, Title of the invention, Document type, Date of application, Date of patent, IPC Classification, National classification, References, Related application data, Assignee (Owner), Attorney or agent, etc., we can use this data with our search term or without the search term to find the relevant information pertaining to the intended invention. Doing such a search will help us make our search more comprehensive and effective.

Adding Boolean Operators- Patent search databases like the one provided by the USPTO or WIPO offers various Boolean Operators like “OR”, “AND”, “ANDNOT” to do an effective patent search. Using these Boolean operators we can make our patent search more comprehensive and accurate and thus should be used by patent search professionals who are looking for a detailed and thorough patent search.

Understanding the nature of the database and searching accordingly- Understanding the nature of the database is important because only then can we make our search more worthy. For example, in USPTO database, patents from 1790 through 1975 are searchable only by Issue Date, Patent Number, and Current US Classification. In such a situation doing a keyword search would not be of much use.

All we can say is that while doing searches for patent related data it is important for searchers to consider various changes that algorithms have undergone through. Each database has its own advantages and limitations and a searcher should know them to reap maximum benefits. With above-mentioned patent searching tips, you can get maximum benefits with minimum inputs.

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