When you pop open your browser and prepare to do a web search, do you use Google?
There is no argument about Google being a reliable and popular search engine. But if you are interested in one that suits your specific interest, search type, or desire to help others, then check out these awesome seven alternatives.
For Privacy Concerns
If you are looking for a search engine that cares about your privacy, one of these two options might be just what you need.
When it comes to keeping your personal information safe, DuckDuckGo flies to the top of the search engine list. As their policy states, they do not collect or share your personal details, store your search history, or track you, even when you are using private browsing mode.
Like Google, DuckDuckGo offers categories at the top to narrow down your search, like web, images, or videos. And depending on your search term, those may change from products to recipes to news. The search engine also contains a couple of filters that you can apply.
What you will notice about DuckDuckGo when you first search is that the results page is not paginated. So rather than scrolling a short way and clicking to move to the next page of results, you will see them all on one page with a Load More option. Alternatively, you can jump to specific sections of results that are displayed at the top.
So depending on your search results display preference in relation to your privacy concerns, DuckDuckGo is certainly worth a try.
StartPage by Ixquick is another great choice if privacy is your concern. This search engine protects your privacy by not recording your IP address, has a high SSL encryption score, and has received seals and certifications in the privacy industry.
Since the search results you receive from StartPage come from Google Search, the basic differences are appearance and settings.
With StartPage your filtering options are displayed on the left for timeframe. Your settings can be accessed from the three-line icon on the top right. You can adjust settings for language, theme, search features, results appearance, and privacy.
If you really want to stick with the results you get from Google, but still want to go the more private route with your searches, check out StartPage by Ixquick.
Google does have a nice way to locate multimedia options within search results by clicking that category at the top. But, if you prefer a more concentrated search for images, videos, and sound effects, then look at these specific search type options.
3. Vimeo for Videos
Owned by Google, YouTube is a huge resource for videos of all kinds. But Vimeo has its place in that market too. So you do not have to limit yourself when searching for that instructional, informative, or simply hilarious video clip.
Vimeo offers an easy-to-use interface with a handy sorting feature. You can also narrow down your results with filters for category, upload date, duration, price, and license. And like Google’s YouTube, you can follow other users, like and comment on videos, and save your favorites.
The most noticeable difference between YouTube and Vimeo is the number of results you will receive for your search. YouTube still leads the way, but just remember that Vimeo is a solid option as well.
You can also meet your video search needs with interesting search engines like:
- blinkx — Search for videos by keywords and also content (conceptual search).
- Bing Video — Search includes YouTube, Yahoo, Vimeo and other video hosting sites.
- AOL Video — A powerful search engine which uses its own player for the videos in the results.
4. Yahoo for Images
When it comes to searching for images, whether for business or pleasure, an important search feature is filtering. Yahoo’s image search does very well in this aspect. To begin, your results will show you many image options from Flickr and the web.
You can then filter your image results by color and size, which is convenient. In addition, you can choose a media type such as photo, GIF, portrait, and clip art and even pick a license option, making it perfect for commercial use.
While you can select the Images category by searching Yahoo’s main search engine, you can also head directly to the Yahoo image search site. So just keep this search engine in mind the next time you seek that perfect image.
5. FindSounds for Sound Effects
For finding sound effects for your company or personal use, FindSounds is a terrific search engine. You can filter your results before you even begin your search using the convenient checkboxes and drop-down boxes. Pick your file format, number of channels, minimum resolution, and minimum sample rate.
From animals to vehicles and everything in between, you can easily search by category in addition to entering a search term. And when your results display, you will see just enough details surrounding the sound effect. Then choose between playing the clip or finding similar ones.
Finding sound effects using Google is always an option, but with FindSounds you have a specific sound bite engine for speeding up your search.
For Giving Back
If you are not picky when it comes to your search engine choice and simply use Google for convenience, then try an option that helps you give back. These two engines might just make you feel good with every search.
When you use Ecosia for your searches, you can take pride in helping the environment. The company donates at least 80 percent of their monthly profits to plant trees in locations like Peru and Madagascar. Due to Ecosia, over six million trees have been planted as of this writing.
When you use Ecosia for your search engine, you will see a counter at the top showing how many trees you have helped to plant. The company uses their ads to generate the revenue. However, even if you do not click an ad, you are still assisting the company by increasing their user base.
If you are interested in joining an environmental movement with your searches, then definitely check out Ecosia.
Lilo is another search engine that uses its revenue to assist causes. The company supports environmental, social, health, and educational projects with 50 percent of their advertising revenue. And to take Lilo one step further, the search engine does not collect your personal information or allow for ad-tracking.
Every time you perform a search with Lilo, you earn a drop of water that equals one point and corresponds to the money you are generating. Plus, you can decide which projects you would like to help.
If you like the idea of giving back and would love to assist various projects with a simple search, give Lilo a try.
Will You Keep Using Google or Move On?
Whether it is for privacy, specific searches, or helping charitable causes, there are certainly reasons that these options are better than Google in their missions.
Are you a die-hard Google user and do not plan to change? Do you plan to give one of these a try or do you use one already? Share your thoughts in the comments below!