Results May Vary: Google vs. Yahoo, Bing and DuckDuckGo. - Vlad Khvatov

vladkhvatov.com
7 min read
fairly easy
6.5 million search results across 4 search engines reveal how they're alike—and how they're not
If you've spent more than a few hours on the internet, you know that Google is the king of search engines. The search giant owns a towering 92% share of the search market. The majority of users don't even consider using a different search engine. And why should they? Google's been "old reliable" for over two decades. But while Google remains synonymous with "search," the fact remains that there are alternatives. Some have been slain by mighty Google over the years (goodbye, Altavista), but old names like Yahoo still draw breath today. And yes, they still have users. With Google being the brand name among all these also-rans, we got to wondering. Are we missing out by only using Google? How much of a difference is there across these different search platforms? There was only one way to find out. Run a lot of searches and collect data. Running The Numbers When we say a lot of searches and data, we mean 56,000 keywords and over 6.5 million search results across 4 search engines - Google, Yahoo, Bing and DuckDuckGo. After collecting the data, we started making sense of it. Our first question was: How similar are these different search engines? We defined similarity as the percentage of like results found in the top 10 of two different search engines. We also compared results at different positions across platforms. We sorted results by topic and keyword length. And we tracked how often big domains like Amazon, Youtube and Wikipedia landed in the top results. Summary of findings:

1 Google's top result is only found in the top spot on Yahoo 34% of the time, and the top spot on Bing and DuckDuckGo 36% of the time. 2 How similar are other search engine's top 10 results to Google's? DuckDuckGo is closest with 32%, followed by Bing (31%) and Yahoo (29%) 3 Yahoo and Bing's top 10 results are 71% similar, while Yahoo and DuckDuckGo's are only 63% similar. 4 For Yahoo, Bing and DuckDuckGo, keywords with monthly search volume in the 1k-10k range are the most similar to Google.…
Vlad Khvatov
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