• Christian Michaels

Privacy, Searches & DuckDuckGo: Who’s the Under-Duck Taking on Google?

With Apple attempting to fend off the FBI from accessing a backdoor to its software and the internet flooded with scams designed to steal your data, the privacy debate has never raged more threateningly before. But in the midst of public backlash and loss of personal details, there’s one plucky underdog – or under-duck – who’s trying to change things for the better: DuckDuckGo.

What is DuckDuckGo?

It’s no secret that Google has dominated the search world – leaving Bing and Yahoo! trailing behind in the dust – but the lack of privacy its users experience has surprisingly done very little to deter people. Not content with tracked searches and filter bubbles, Gabriel Weinberg created DuckDuckGo, and already it’s become a breath of fresh air in the search world.

Billed as ‘the search engine that doesn’t track you’, DuckDuckGo has made its stance on privacy very clear. In addition to choosing not to save its users’ data, the search engine provides quality over quantity, picking only the best and most relevant results – mostly from crowdsourced sites such as Wikipedia. As such, the need to battle it out with competitors for SEO purposes is redundant.

Who’s Choosing DuckDuckGo over Google?

Although the appeal of privacy is universal, it may surprise you to hear that not everybody is using DuckDuckGo just yet. Of course, this is also down to their own marketing and media coverage, but when faced with Google, it quickly becomes a David vs Goliath battle. So who’s making the search engine popular, if not every day internet-browsing folk?

Thanks to DuckDuckGo’s nifty privacy policy, it’s not an easy task to discern who’s using the search engine. Fortunately, there are ways around that: web traffic comparison site, SimilarWeb, recently carried out research into DuckDuckGo’s key demographic, using the top 5 sites most commonly frequented by users: WhiteHatSec, GitHub, New York Times, 4Chan and YCombinator. A quick Google (slightly risky) will go some way to explaining the type niche that these sites serve – the main point being that such search terms could be flagged by Google. In a world where one inflammatory search term can launch a witch hunt, that’s an attractive prospect.

It’s also more than probable to estimate that most of DuckDuckGo’s users use browsers other than Chrome – both Apple and Mozilla have added the search engine to their respective browsers as a preferred search tool. This support from Google’s competitors is also likely to be helping in pushing DuckDuckGo in front of more people.

So Why Isn’t Everyone Using DuckDuckGo?

Simply put, people don’t know about DDG. With 93% of traffic originating from direct links, it’s evident that the search engine is most popular amongst its regular audience. In an ideal world, DuckDuckGo would redress this balance by pushing out more press and information on the search engine – but when facing up to Google, it’s not as easy as it sounds.

There’s also the association between search privacy and arenas such as the Dark Web that may put some casual internet users off. Horror stories about the Dark Web have found a new platform in the scare tactics of clickbait articles, but really the two aren’t even close to be synonymous – even if privacy is the name of the game for both. Instead, DuckDuckGo provides a safe environment for users to search the internet for great, relevant content without the fear of being tracked – a welcome feeling in the modern world. Whether DuckDuckGo’s David manages to defeat Google’s Goliath on that merit alone, however, is yet to be seen.

Although DuckDuckGo is finding its market, Google is still king of searches – so it’s best to make sure your SEO campaign is on their good side! Get in touch with the Christian Michaels agency to find out how we can help to make it happen.

#digitalmarketing #seoservices



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