In a recent video, startup search engine DuckDuckGo accuses Google of limiting search results through its personalization capability. The company suggests users aren’t exposed to enough web results because of Google’s application of previous search data and other web activity into every query. For content marketers, this raises questions about the ultimate reach of their SEO efforts for search visibility.
The conversations about Google’s inclusion of user data to inform search initially gained steam in January, when the company rolled out Search, plus Your World. While almost two-thirds of users suggested that they would stop using Google services as a result, the company’s adoption rates and market shares remain high. It seems even if users are unhappy with search history’s influence over their results, they are set in their search ways (at least for the moment). Pew data from March found 75 percent of Americans don’t like the idea of personalized results. Still, 91 percent of searchers (across engines) believe they are generally able to find information that satisfies their queries.
DuckDuckGo has frequently hailed its product as an alternative to Google and other search engines that include personal data in results. Still, the site continues to struggle in generating any kind of notable following on the web.
The fledgling search engine may hold some value for companies, though. Earlier this year, Brafton highlighted benefits of DuckDuckGo that could help marketers. For example, achieving top search positions on the site could drive more clicks since SERPs aren’t cluttered with ads.