Alternative Search Engines You Should Know

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When we talk about SEO and search engines, we instantly think of Google. But did you know there are lots of alternative search engines out there with just as much to offer. Get ready as we tour you through Alternative Search Engines You Should Know

Baidu 

Baidu is a Chinese company specifically focused on the local Chinese market (whereas Google is global). We still find it worth mentioning because, hey, maybe that’s your target audience. 

Baidu accounts for just over 72% of China’s search. It has product features similar to Google, despite its false reputation as an “online search specific” engine. 

The website does require a strong knowledge of local Chinese culture and language, however. Baidu’s algorithms are adapted to the complex Chinese language, where certain words have varied meanings. The algorithm considers a word’s context to keep user inquiries relevant. Google has been unable to do this, which is why Baidu is favored among Chinese users. 

Again, this engine is only something to consider if your target audience is within China. You’ll also have to remain compliant with censorship and local laws.

Yahoo 

Yahoo has definitely shrunk in size in recent years, but it’s still the third-largest U.S. search engine. 

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Bing powers the Yahoo platform, but there are few differences in results. Yahoo also doesn’t clearly distinguish between the paid and organic results. Plus, the UI is far less engaging than Bing’s. 

Like Bing and Google, it does collect personal information during account registration and while interacting with their services. Additionally, it may share your data with Verizon, Yahoo’s parent company.

Where Yahoo shines for users is in its News, Sport, and Finance sections. This is often the go-to platform for inquiries related to those subjects. 

The CEO of coachfoundation.com, Sai Blackbyrn, reiterated that to us, “Yahoo is often the go-to platform for politics, finance, and sports news. If your website offers news, sports, and finance content, then it is crucial that you prioritize ranking highly on Yahoo in addition to Google.”

Ecosia

With the search engine Ecosia, you get your money’s worth especially if you want to support a company that values the environment. It is a charity search engine that is operated in-house. Ecosia advertises to strive for a negative carbon footprint and uses Bing to search or filter the results. While the search engine is considered to be clear and of course has the big bonus of being environmentally friendly, there is a big disadvantage here: The data protection declaration was criticized in a test by Stiftung Warentest as was the data transmission behavior within the app.

Bing

This Microsoft platform is the second largest in the United States and has almost a 7% global market share. 

Its features are similar to Google, including content like currency conversion, translation, image, and video searches. 

Unfortunately, it’s also similar to Google’s privacy policy. Microsoft gathers data from all product interactions. Plus, the search quality is on par with Google’s.

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In 2019, Bing faced severe backlash regarding their safe search. It has since been cleared up.

Jagadeash, a content marketer from picmaker.com, told us, “All we have to look at is the Google Analytics profile of our website. When you break it down by search engine, Bing is our 2nd biggest source of traffic, and that traffic spans across many of our landing pages and blog posts.”

Qwant

Qwant claims that they ‘respect your privacy,’ and it is another reliable option for those looking for a true alternative to Google.

Unlike some of the other privacy-first search engines, Qwant uses its indexing engine combined with Bing results to emphasize avoiding personalizing search results to prevent searchers from getting stuck in a filter-bubble. As this search engine is based in Paris, it is essential to know that European privacy protection laws are typically much stricter than other places in the world, such as the U.S. 


Qwant is also becoming increasingly popular. The search engine comes from France and is now used in many different countries. Disadvantage: The search results seem a little confusing. Nevertheless, accurate results are convincing.

Startpage.com

Startpage.com makes the bold claim that it is the world’s most private search engine. That statement lead to a fair amount of media coverage as well as a third-party audit by the European Privacy Seal.

Startpage.com’s claims can be backed up by their ‘no-logs’ policy. The ‘no-logs’ policy means that the search engine has no idea who their users are; they do not store the IP address of searchers or store tracking cookies.

If you are simply looking for relevant results with the confidence they put privacy first, Startpage.com is the choice for you.

Swisscows

Swisscows is another European search engine focused heavily on the privacy of its users. Swisscows promote themselves around three core promises that make them a great alternative to Google and others:

  • They do not store your data
  • They place great importance to family-friendly content
  • Often boast they have created an innovative search engine

Letting children surf the web is a concern for many parents, and Swisscows is committed to delivering a search engine that is a safe environment for the whole family to enjoy the web. 

Search Encrypt

On its face, Search Encrypt looks pretty much like Google does, and that is not necessarily a bad thing.

There is a clear emphasis on doing one thing: getting a user to search.

However, Search Encrypt’s goal is to “protect your privacy by detecting searches that may be tracked and tied to your personal information. It intercepts those searches and redirects them to Search Encrypt’s privacy-enhanced search engine, which will be set to your default search engine.”

Unlike some of the alternatives here, it does store your history for 30 minutes. Wondering if this search engine is right for you? See what users who have completely switched to this from Google have to say about it.

Yandex

As the fifth most popular search engine worldwide, Yandex is used extensively in its native Russia, where it holds around 60% of the search engine market share.

It provides a very similar service to Google, and you can search websites, images, videos, and news in a user-friendly layout. With additional features including mobile apps, maps, translation, cloud storage and more, Yandex offers just as much functionality but with a cleaner interface.

DuckDuckGo

These days, privacy is a top concern for pretty much everyone who goes online.

That said, DuckDuckGo is one of the Internet’s most well-known private search engines—even though nobody quite knows how ducks and privacy go together.

With a plain and clear promise to never store a user’s personal information, DuckDuckGo maintains that your data should stay yours and yours alone. 

Aside from ease-of-use, anonymity is the key incentive this engine offers to new users. In fact, DuckDuckGo is so serious about its privacy policy that it has to guess the number of users it has, simply because its staff refuses to count them. 

Still prefer to use one of the big search engines? DuckDuckGo has you covered there too! Their mobile apps and browser extensions protect you from Google, Facebook, and other trackers, no matter where you go online. 

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