Your SEO strategy may have Google as the central focus, but you should consider optimizing for the many other alternative search engines out there. Do not think that whatever your strategy is right now that you have to scrap that. Most SEO best practices stretch across all the search engines. These alternatives are not reinventing how users are searching and most utilize the same search logic.
Like a good financial portfolio, diversification is key. By making a few small tweaks to your SEO strategy, you will notice your business expanding to a greater audience. Most businesses only think of Google when they think of search engines. But, you do not want to put all your eggs in one basket.
We will be discussing the best Google alternative search engines and current trends around them so that you can stay ahead of the game. Specifically, we will dive into the search engine DuckDuckGo. Ever heard of it? It is one of the fastest-growing search engines and one that should be on your radar. Do not worry if you are unfamiliar with DuckDuckGo. We will provide you all that you need to know. On the plus side, DuckDuckGo SEO will not just be applicable to itself but to the other search engines too.
The Best Search Engines
Before we get into the specifics around DuckDuckGo, it is worth knowing more about the search engine market. It should not come as a surprise that Google makes up a large majority of online searches with about 88% of the market. The Google alternative search engines like Bing, Yahoo, and DuckDuckGo respectively follow the marker leader. Even combined, those three search engines just barely break 10%.
You are probably thinking then why should you optimize for these smaller players? As previously said, Google’s algorithm is ever-changing and one small change could send your business down on result pages. Additionally, customers using these Google alternatives are not going to just magically switch over to Google. They are on these search engines for specific reasons which we will talk about later. You run the risk of missing out on customers that may not ever see your business online. Besides, search engine trends are showing that Google’s lead will not last forever. Alternatives to Google are growing in number and taking more of the market.
DuckDuckGo Market Trends
Despite’s DuckDuckGo’s small market share, the search engine is exponentially growing. The Google alternative is one of the best up-and-coming search engines that will give Google a run for its money. From 2019 to 2020, DuckDuckGo usage increased by 57% with a total of 24 billion search queries in that year alone. According to DuckDuckGo’s own traffic reporting, that number is only going to grow in the upcoming years.
We are sure this news is all sounding exciting and you are now more curious about DuckDuckGo. Let us take a step back and discuss what differentiates DuckDuckGo from Google and the other best search engines.
In a world where privacy is a growing concern, big companies like Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and, of course, Google are all being criticized for how they handle user privacy. Storing personal information, tracking where you go, and retaining your search history are just a few accusations towards these companies.
Security and privacy are where DuckDuckGo excels. DuckDuckGo does not store or share a user’s personal information or search history. This Google alternative certainly does not follow you with ads and track you across the internet like some search engines we know.
The Typical DuckDuckGo Searcher
As a customer, this all sounds really good. But as a business, you might be thinking that this aspect of DuckDuckGo will complicate your SEO strategy. We will get to ways to help your online visibility with all the Google alternative search engines. For now, think of it as an opportunity to reach a whole new audience.
Most users on DuckDuckGo made the switch from Google because of these concerns with privacy. As we have seen, this trend is only growing and more customers are moving over to a simpler alternative. You will miss out on not only new customers but old ones that are tired of being tracked. Also, a DuckDuckGo searcher is generally of higher quality with lower bounce rates and on websites longer. They are familiar with search engines and querying. They know how to find high-quality products and services and are more serious buyers. You definitely will want your business optimized for DuckDuckGo to attract and convert these searchers into loyal customers.
DuckDuckGo vs. Incognito Mode
But if you turn on incognito mode, Google isn’t tracking your searches anymore, right? Wrong. Incognito mode is far from the security and privacy DuckDuckGo offers. Next time you turn on incognito mode, look at the disclaimer Google Chrome gives. Chrome will not save your browsing history, cookies, and site data. However, your activity is still very much visible to your employer or school. Comparing incognito mode to DuckDuckGo is apples to oranges or, better yet, a Ford to a Ferrari. DuckDuckGo is the Google alternative search engine that does not record or retain any searches or data.
DuckDuckGo SEO Best Practices
At this point, we hope you are not feeling overwhelmed or intimidated by DuckDuckGo. If you have already been incorporating general SEO best practices into your strategy, you are more than halfway there. We want to provide a few suggestions that will help your online visibility on DuckDuckGo. Some of them you may already be doing. Give special consideration to the below as you improve your future SEO strategy and you will be in good shape.
DuckDuckGo retrieves its results from more than 400 sources – mostly crowd-sourced websites or traditional websites. The Google alternative even uses its own web crawler “DuckDuckBot” to help vet through search results. You will notice that by applying some of the below tactics, you will not only optimize for DuckDuckGo SEO but also the other search engines.
Utilize and Earn High-Quality Links
This one is important not only for DuckDuckGo but for SEO in general. It is easier said than done but search engines value trusted and reliable sources. Include high domain ranking websites in your own content. All the same, create high-quality, original content on your own site so you can get backlinked. All search engines including DuckDuckGo use links and backlinks as a ranking factor so you should build your website’s prominence.
Choose Intentional and Hyper-Local Keywords
The DuckDuckGo searcher is more literal when querying the search engine and you want to be careful when selecting your keywords. Use online keyword tools to find the best words and phrases for your content. Once you have your terms, weave them into your content. Use them in your headers and throughout the body when necessary.
The tricky thing about DuckDuckGo is that the Google alternative does not track the user especially when it comes to their location. Google is known to use GPS and your IP address to figure out your location and make suggestions accordingly. That will not work for DuckDuckGo. Even typing “near me” in a DuckDuckGo query will not work as well as on Google. That is why it is important to make your location known in greater detail. Throw in hyper-local keywords in your content and website. You should consider including your business’s area code, neighborhood, or anything else location-specific to your area.
The last note about location-based SEO is that DuckDuckGo uses Apple Maps for local search results. Having your Google My Business profile and giving Google your location information will only get you so far. Make sure you have optimized your Apple Maps listing and other map directories.
Enhance Your Website’s Structure and User Experience
DuckDuckGo wants to provide its users with the best experience. You may have the best content on your website but if it is not presented in the right way, it will go unnoticed. Keep your content organized and structured well with headers, bullet points, and sections so it is easy to scan. Remember that DuckDuckGo has its own web crawler to browse through the internet and index sources.
Getting a little more technical, do not forget that load time and site navigation both impact how DuckDuckGo and other search engines rank your website. Also, mobile-friendly websites and sites that use pop-ups sparingly help with DuckDuckGo SEO. You should make your website clear and easy for your customers which will assist in your search result ranking.
Master the Google Alternative Search Engine
When it comes down to the core, DuckDuckGo is not that much different from the other search engines. By incorporating a few minor adjustments to your SEO strategy, you will not only be optimized for Google but help your online visibility with all the other alternatives. Google is gradually losing its market share as user preferences evolve. Stay ahead of the curve and begin optimizing your online presence with techniques and practices offered by SEO Design Chicago.
- What is DuckDuckGo?
- Who uses DuckDuckGo?
- What does the search engine market look like?
- How to enhance a website for DuckDuckGo?
- Does DuckDuckGo use tracking?