There is no denying that Google dominates the search engine space, with ‘Googling’ something now the go-to phrase instead of ‘searching for’ or ‘looking up’ something. Having said that, there are a variety of reasons why someone might choose to avoid Google, from the sheer size of their yearly profits to the many reports of their tax avoidance.
People aren’t always convinced to make the switch from Google, however, due to the fear that it will compromise their search experience. With that said, there are some newer search engines which are focused on making the search experience as informative and useful as possible.
In this article, we outline some of the alternatives to Google search, including those that are more well-known and well-established and some newer charity search engines which are giving them a run for their money!
The well-known alternatives to Google search
The likelihood is that you’ve heard of these alternatives already at some point, but we thought we’d lay them out for you anyway!
Bing is the second most popular search engine after Google with almost 3% of the global market share from September 2019 to September 2020. It offers many similar features to Google, such as knowledge panels, translations and currency conversions. It has typically been considered the closest alternative to Google and users can benefit from a beautiful daily wallpaper of a different location around the world.
This search engine became popular because it doesn’t collect or store any personal information. This does mean you don’t get any personalisation whatsoever, however, and everyone is shown the same results when using DuckDuckGo.
Although DuckDuckGo offers a form of a knowledge graph, it is not yet as rich or sophisticated as Google or one of the challenger search engines we’ll come on to later.
Known as ‘the search engine that plants trees’, this is a concept that has been very successful in gaining Ecosia popularity. Since they began, they have planted over 100 million trees — an admirable feat indeed!
Although they have a fantastic mission, as a search engine Ecosia is still fairly simplistic. The search experience is not very sophisticated, offering standard results and a basic knowledge panel pulled from Wikipedia but not much else.
The challenger search engines
So, those were the search engines that you’ve probably heard of before, but here are some other options we’ve named our ‘challenger search engines’.
We’ve outlined those search engines that offer the additional benefit of donating to charity because, if you’re going to use an alternative to Google or Bing, you may as well give something back!
Unlike a lot of other charity search engines which opt for the fun but simplistic, ‘search and we’ll plant trees/collect plastic’ approach, SearchScene doesn’t limit you to one charitable action. In fact, we support a range of global charities and donate money directly to these causes from our advertising revenue.
We donate 95% of the profits made through advertising to a selection of chosen charities, with a focus on fighting climate change. You can also choose which charities you’d like to donate to by using the charity button in the top right corner, so if you have a particular cause or selection of causes you are passionate about, you can opt to support those with your searches. The best thing is that you have the flexibility to support a range of issues.
The search results are powered by Bing and SearchScene users will also benefit from a changing daily wallpaper of a beautiful natural scene, reminding us of how amazing our planet is. If you want to search while taking action on climate change, this is a great option for you.
Youcare is a French search engine which transforms your searches into good deeds. When they started, the good deed was donating meals to animals in shelters, but they have since added options for cancer research, reforestation, removing plastic from the oceans, planting coral reefs and providing clean drinking water. Like Ecosia, they donate 80% of their profits to the various good deeds they outline.
They are powered by Bing and have an attractive search results page, which integrates images, videos and news with the main results. However, they don’t yet have a sophisticated knowledge panel like SearchScene.
The central mission of OceanHero is to be the search engine that saves the oceans. They do this by recovering ocean-bound plastic bottles. They donate 50% of their revenue to ocean cleaning projects, which is far less than Ecosia at 80% and SearchScene at 95%, although still a worthy cause.
Their search results offer a fairly detailed knowledge panel, and they also provide widgets such as a calculator, a weather widget and dictionary definitions. These are not available on all charity search engines, only like the likes of SearchScene and Ecosia.
As another ocean-focused search engine, Ekoru donates to projects which are focused on keeping our oceans clean and green. This involves the removal of plastic and reforestation in the oceans.
They donate 60% of their advertising revenue to these causes, which is more than OceanHero, but again less than Ecosia and SearchScene!
Their search results are also fairly basic, with little in the way of knowledge panels or additional widgets to help the user.
Overall, it seems that there are a number of alternatives to Google search to choose from and many of these make charitable donations to worthy causes. This is a great way to incorporate charitable giving into your everyday life.
Of the challenger search engines, we believe SearchScene has the broadest scope when it comes to charitable causes and we donate far more of our advertising profits compared to the others. However, you can choose the alternative search engine that works best for you!
This article first appeared on Medium.