This is the best list of Alternative Search Engines I have ever done. It has to be. With each monthly update, several things happen that serve to improve the list. One, I have spent a month - since the March update - scouring the World Wide Web for any brand new Search Engines (see Querycat) or ones that might have been missed (see Accoona). Two, several alternative search engines have been added directly from readers' comments to the last list (see younanimous; more on that later). And several readers suggested a new category: Charity Search Engines; so that category has been added and I placed a charitable search engine on this month's list (see SearchKindly). I am also preparing an article that looks at many of the Charity search engines that have recently sprung up. Finally, another source of new alts comes from those leaving their alpha or "stealth" phase and entering a Beta phase - or even fully launching; see the new Cydral (note: instructions are in French).
12 new search engines
In total, there are 12 new search engines this month (and 12, sadly, went "down to the minors"). From the first List in January through to this one, there have been 160 Alternative Search Engines in total!
I also try to improve the format and usefulness of the List every month. Last month I incorporated your suggestion to add Categories to the List and Excel spreadsheet. This month I have added some more features. As you look over the 100 names, please note that there are fifty alts that have an asterisk (*) after their name; this indicates that the search engine has been on all four lists from January through April. I also added notes to remind you who was one of the ten (throughout the year) featured Search Engines of the Month (see GoshMe and KoolTorch).
But the biggest change that I have made is in response to those readers who have noted that 100 search engines is too many to check out! I guess in my heart I have always known this, because if you spend just 10 minutes looking at each one, it will take you 16 hours to complete! So this month I am inaugurating a brand new feature: in addition to the Search Engine of the Month, I have marked with an (HM) ten Honorable Mentions! Try to take the time to experiment with these this month. Every month I will designate another ten; and so when December rolls around, you will have the absolute best Top 100 Alternative Search Engines; 90 Honorable Mentions; 10 Search Engines of the Month; and of course the #1 Search Engine of the Year for 2007!
Search Engine of the Month: AfterVote
AfterVote! One thing that I have noticed after looking at so many search engines is that many fall into one of two camps. Either they present a fairly simple search box with an "Advanced Search Preferences" link, which are essentially the same routine filters (and very similar to Google's). Or the Search Engine is chock full of features which are intimidating for the first time user and require a steep learning curve that few are willing to climb. AfterVote stops the searcher right on the homepage and asks him or her to select their comfort level. If they just want to do a quick and easy search, they can select "Beginner" and AfterVote will only show them the essential tools. But if the searcher desires to learn how to be a more skilled user, she can choose "Intermediate" and AfterVote automatically responds with some more - but not all - of its features. Finally, you guessed it, if you are an expert searcher (and you know who you are), you don't have to "dumb down" when using AfterVote - just select "Advanced" and all of their features will be at your disposal! And thanks to cookies, AfterVote will even remember your "level" the next time you visit the site! But if you're curious, go ahead and select "Advanced" and take a look at all of the cool buttons. You can select "Search Level" at any time and pick another option.And now for the month of April, I am pleased to present the Search Engine of the Month - younanimous! Or, as it has become,
This is not the place to go into a detailed tour of AfterVote, for that just click on their blog and you can read all about it. I do want to point out that AfterVote is the work of three guys who also have regular jobs. It just goes to show that you don't have to have a million dollars in VC money to create a new search engine, just some great ideas and a whole lot of work!
How AfterVote works - click here for larger screenshot
P. S. I will be in Italy when this is published, so I have asked Dan (of AfterVote) and Richard (Read/WriteWeb Editor) to keep an eye on your comments. I will have to play catch up when I get back, or you can send me an email at Charles@CharlesKnightSEO.com. Arrivederci!
Special Announcement for Alternative Search Engines
Please follow this link to the Searchnomics Conference website and submit your search engine in their competition. Then you can ask your users to vote for your site. The winner will be announced - with much fanfare - at the Searchnomics conference in Santa Clara, California on June 27th.
The List, April 2007
|Search Engine name||URL||Category|
|Accoona||www.accoona.com||A.I. Search (HM)|
|AfterVote (SEM)||www.aftervote.com||Social Search|
|ChaCha* (#1 2006)||www.chacha.com||Guided Search|
|Collarity*||www.collarity.com||Social Search (HM)|
|Congoo*||www.congoo.com||Premium Content Search|
|CrossEngine (Mr. Sapo)*||www.crossengine.com||MetaSearch|
|Cydral||http://en.cydral.com||Image Search (French)|
|FeedMiner||www.feedminer.com||RSS Feeds Search|
|Feedster||www.feedster.com||RSS Feeds Search|
|Find Forward||www.findforward.com||Meta Feature Search|
|Fisssh!||www.fisssh.com||Filtered Search (HM)|
|FyberSearch||www.fybersearch.com||Meta Feature Search|
|GoLexa||www.golexa.com||Meta Feature Search|
|GoshMe* (SEM)||www.goshme.com||Meta Meta Search|
|Hakia||www.hakia.com||Meaning Based Search|
|KoolTorch (SEM)||www.kooltorch.com||Clustering Search|
|Lexxe*||www.lexxe.com||Natural Language Processing (NLP)|
|LivePlasma*||www.liveplasma.com||Recommendation Search (HM)|
|Mojeek*||www.mojeek.com||Custom Search Engines (CSE)|
|Ms. Dewey*||www.msdewey.com||Unique Interface (HM)|
|PureVideo||www.purevideo.com||Video Search (HM)|
|Querycat||http://querycat.com||F.A.Q. Search (HM)|
|Searchles* (DumbFind)||www.searchles.com||Social Search|
|SearchTheWeb2*||www.searchtheweb2.com||Long Tail Search|
|Slifter*||www.slifter.com||Mobile Shopping Search (HM)|
|SurfWax*||www.surfwax.com||Meaning Based Search|
|Swamii||www.swamii.com||Continuous Search (HM)|
|Web 2.0*||www.web20searchengine.com||Web 2.0 Search|
|Wikio*||www.wikio.com||Web 2.0 Search|
|Zuula*||www.zuula.com||Tabbed Search (HM)|