What Is A Search Engine?
A search engine could be a software, a platform, or a web-based tool that helps individuals easily and effectively find information online/ offline. Archie was the first search engine ever created. It was launched on the 10th of September 1990 and its primary function was to search for files stored on a File Transfer Protocol (FTP). Two years later, in 1992, the first text-based search engine by the name VERONICA (Very Easy Rodent-Oriented Net-wide Index to Computer Archives) was launched by Steve Foster and Fred Barrie in the United States.
How Do Search Engines Work?
In simple terms, a search engine allows users search and find information by scanning through numerous web pages, data, or available resources to find the best/ relevant information in regards to the keywords or phrases searched by the user. The search engine usually generates results best matched by relevance and popularity based on the search engine’s algorithm.
Examples Of Search Engines And Their Significance In Various Regions:
With search engine like yahoo!, Google and Bing being the top 3, taking over 90% of global usage, below are other search engine and their ranking in various geographical region
Between 2018 and 2019, other top search engines used In Africa and their percentage of use are as follows:
- DuckDuckGo: 0.13%
- WebCrawler: 0.04%
- Baidu: 0.07%
- Others: 0.15%
Between 2018 and 2019, other search engines used In Asia and their percentage of use are as follows:
- Naver: 1.8%
- Baidu: 60%
- Sogou: 0.5%
- Yandex: 0.79%
- Others: 0.98%
Between 2018 and 2019, other top search engines used In Europe and their percentage of use are as follows:
- Seznam: 0.17%
- nl: 1.5%
- Yandex.ru: 1.96%
- Conduit: 0.19%
- DuckDuckGo: 0.42%
- Others: 0.66%
- North America
Between 2018 and 2019, the top 5 search engines used In North America and their percentage of use are as follows:
- com: 0.22%
- com: 0.15%
- DuckDuckGo: 0.96%
- MSN: 0.08%
- Others: 0.17%
Below is the global marketshare of other search engine with google, bing and yahoo! taking over 85% in market value.
- Baidu – 1.11%
- ru – 0.54%
- DuckDuckGo – 0.42%
- Ask.com – 0.39%
- com – 0.06%
- Others – 0.01%
- Examples Of Search Engines Specific To Africa:
Two examples of some search engines specific to the African region, with focus on Nigeria and South Africa are: Finelib, Ananzi and Vconnect.
- com: Finelib is one of Nigeria’s top search engines. It primarily focuses on business directories in Nigerian. It gives an in-depth information on local businesses in the country, and reviews for all cities and towns in Nigeria. As at 21st July 2019, Finelib ranks at number 42,151 on the global internet engagement list.
- co.za: From its extension we can agree that this is a South African based search engine. It was first created in 1996, making it the first indigineous search engine. As of 2011, it is South Africa largest and fastest search engine with over 2.3 million classified web pages related to south Africa. Searchable contents ranges from cars, to property, jobs and entertainment.
- com: VConnect which is currently focused on Nigeria and Ghana is a unique search engine primarily focused on linking service providers to those looking for such services. The site has a large number services ranging in hundreds from events to logistics, repairs and maintenance, home and office improvement, personal services, business services and more. As at 21st July 2019, VConnect ranks at number 28,130 on the global internet engagement list.
- Examples Of Other Search Engines Used Globally:
- com: Baidu is one of China’s leading Chinese language search engine. It is the world’s ninth-largest internet company by revenue, and ranks at number 4 on the global internet engagement list as at 21st July 2019. The company which was founded on the 1st of January 2000 currently has over 42,000 employees under its payroll.
- com: Lunched in 1996, it is a metasearch engine that fetches it results from multiples search engines like yahoo!, bing, google yandex and more and offers them in a single result list. Their technology is believed to search 50% more than any single search engine and aimed at providing the best results. Contents ranges from imagery, audio, video and text results. it mostly popular in the United States, Canada and India with a global ranking of 13,933.
- com: Founded in 1995, Ask.com is one of the widely used search engine especially in American and europe, with an estimated monthly users of 245 million. Its is ranked 31 in the US and is very effective with specific question/answers related searches where most questions are answered by other users or in a form of polls.
- com: This is also one of the top search engine, based in New York city. Its is branded and marketed by Verizon Media. Its is mostly used in the US with estimated monthly visitor of 125 million and 232 million searches conducted.
- com: DuckDuckGo which was founded in 2008, with its headquarters in Pennsylvania, United States is an exceptional Internet search engine that focuses on the protection of every user’s privacy. It further takes a different approach by avoiding the filter bubble of personalized search results. As at 21st July 2019, the site ranks at number 167 on the global internet engagement list and 11th in america with over 13 million visitors monthly.
- com.au: This search engine is based in autralia. its is also popular in New Zealand, Philippines and India. Anzwers provides relevant Autralian, New Zealand and global search listing daily with an index of over 54 million documents. It is ranked 192,773 in the world and 23,903 in Australia with monthly visits of 51,296. Search contents include cars, jobs, travel, forex and so on.
- ru: Yandex is one of Russia’s largest search engine. It is a multinational corporation which primarily focuses on Internet-related services. It has a large resource to images, videos, maps, search and information services, mobile applications, online advertising, and lots more. In comparison to other search engines, Yandex has a better ability to understand Slavic and Turkish languages as well as Cyrillic and Latin characters. As at 21st July 2019, the site ranks at number 773 on the global internet engagement list.
In conclusion, there are many other search engines which are unpopular but do provide optimized search results. The various search engines differ in their own unique ways. The major difference with these search engines will depend on the algorithms they use, their interface, the information they have access to, and most importantly the languages they are available in. They all range in size, capacity, and focus areas they choose to engage in.