Claiming more than 90% of total web search queries processed (according to 2010-2014 statistics), Google is the undisputed superpower in the world of search engines. Its simple user interface and expansive search coverage make it the primary choice for internet users—that said, it’s certainly not the only player in the search game.
The following are 15 search engines that you might consider as viable alternatives to Google. This list includes both general search and specific offerings for querying community boards, question/answer forums, products and services, and more.
DuckDuckGo is a search engine that focuses on preserving user privacy. The offering does not track browsing history, social profiles, or email address—enabling users to remain anonymous. On the back end it uses Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines, displaying results without revealing the user’s identity.
Leap2 is a search engine for designed for mobile consumption. The platform searches the web, social networks, news sources, and local listings to deliver relevant results to users in a small-screen format.
As its name implies, Boardreader provides search results derived entirely from forums, message boards, and community websites like Reddit.
Like DuckDuckGo, Startpage/IxQuick focuses on preserving users’ privacy. The offering works without storing user details or employing cookies. User preferences can be set, but are deleted after 90 days of inactivity.
3DPrintler is a search engine for querying all things 3D printing-related. The offering enables users to search and compare 3D printing prices for 268 materials across the most prominent 3D printing services across the globe.
Instead of using standard search algorithms, Enginuity ranks its search results based on social shares (e.g., how Facebook or Twitter likes/shares/reposts). The offering is available as a free app in the Chrome Web Store.
Yellcast enables users to search local merchants and products in a specific community—akin to personal yellow pages, but with photos, products, offers, and seasonal specials.
Gibiru is another search offering focused on user privacy: the platform is devoid of any personalization or tracking cookies. And unlike Google, the company is not partnered with the NSA.
Quantcast is a search engine for finding demographic information, lifestyle information, and traffic statistics for websites. The offering provides audience insights for over 100 million web properties.
Twingly is a search engine for blogs—the platform purportedly indexes over 1.3 million blog posts per day from across the globe. Additionally, integrated APIs allow for customizations and special use cases.
Popular amongst college students and academics, Wolfram Alpha is a so-called “computational knowledge engine”—the offering indexes data from reputed scientific journals papers for more targeted, research-related results than Google.
SocialMention is a search engine that focuses on real-time social media search and analysis. The platform’s displays its search results alongside metrics like social strength, sentiment, reach, passion.
Buzzsumo is a search engine for searching and analyzing social sentiment. It tracks and ranks content based on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and Pinterest likes/shares, among others.
Dogpile executes its web queries using the leading search engines to provide users with a consolidated, streamlined superset of all relevant search results.
In short, the aforementioned search engines may not replace Google any time soon, but they nonetheless serve to illustrate that viable alternatives exist for finding relevant web content. Next time Google fails to deliver the proper results, you may want to give one of these a try.