Skip to main content

Should you be paying more attention to DuckDuckGo?

The Goliath in any industry will always have their version of David. Sometimes they may have more than one.  

Right now Google has their standard competitors and a recent upstart called DuckDuckGo.  

Just like Ello was to Facebook, DuckDuckGo will not retain or use consumer data. This has caused a lot of digital media outlets to cover this challenging newcomer.  

I applaud what they are trying to do. DuckDuckGo is filling a niche that in the world of the internet today solves a major issue consumer’s face… privacy.  

I took a look at some of our own client’s data points to see how this search engine was performing and provide my own point of view.


Our client base in 2015 has seen a 181% increase in referring traffic from DuckDuckGo. This compares to 30% growth in traffic coming from Google.  

While those are some impressive growth numbers, it is off a very small base and represents only 0.2% of total search engine traffic vs. 81% for Google.  



So we have a challenger with a growing (albeit small) base.  


DuckDuckGo has the third best conversion rate and lowest average order value.

Assuming equal volume across all engines and forecasted revenue from each engine (10,000 x AOV x conversion rate) Bing would be your top choice with Google and DuckDuckGo at a virtual tie.  

Does that make any of these search engines better or worse? Not necessarily. This data is only directional. We didn’t look at the ratio between paid and organic search traffic when considering these metrics. I can tell you that it is different for each specific client and sometimes by very wide margins.  




Here are two things I think all search marketers need to think about in relation to DuckDuckGo, or any time you are confronted with a newcomer:

1) Check into it for yourself

Before your clients ask, Bing powers these search listings so it’s likely that you are getting traffic without doing anything. Take this point not just about DuckDuckGo, but any number of ad tech or publisher opportunities. You can’t be too dismissive of new things.  I know you are getting cold calls and emails all day long, but there may be a needle in that haystack. Which one will it be for you? This is a hard one because you can’t let every shiny new thing take you away from your core business, but dedicating some time and budget to the latest platforms and tools is a worthy endeavor.

2) Educate your family, friends, clients and colleagues

I’ll save my point of view on data in advertising for another day, but in short I’m a big fan. Sure just like anything else there is a chance of something going wrong as it relates to privacy, but those same risks exist in many other parts of your life. Data provides us with a better experience. You are going to see an ad, so why not make it one that is relevant to you? 

DuckDuckGo has done a very smart business thing by taking a market concern and turning it into a solution. I just wish people were a little more open about their data as they are with sharing what they are eating on Facebook all day.

I admire the spirit of DuckDuckGo and the entrepreneurship behind it, so congrats to them for making a splash. Here’s to hoping this is a growth opportunity for all search marketers and that maybe this will not be an entirely ‘Google world’.

via Search Engine Watch


Popular posts from this blog

How to Get SMS Alerts for Gmail via Twitter

How do you get SMS notifications on your mobile phone for important emails in your Gmail? Google doesn’t support text notifications for their email service but Twitter does. If we can figure out a way to connect our Twitter and Gmail accounts, the Gmail notifications can arrive as text on our mobile via Twitter. Let me explain:Twitter allows you to follow any @user via a simple SMS. They provide short codes for all countries (see list) and if you text FOLLOW to this shortcode following by the  username, any tweets from that user will arrive in your phone as text notifications. For instance, if you are in the US, you can tweet FOLLOW labnol to 40404 to get my tweets as text messages. Similarly, users in India can text FOLLOW labnol to 9248948837 to get the tweets via SMS.The short code service of Twitter can act as a Gmail SMS notifier. You create a new Twitter account, set the privacy to private and this account will send a tweet when you get a new email in Gmail. Follow this account …

Another SEO tool drops the word “SEO”

This guest post is by Majestic’s Marketing Director, Dixon Jones, who explains the reasons for their recent name change.
Majestic, the link intelligence database that many SEOs have come to use on a daily basis, has dropped the “SEO” from it’s brand and from its domain name, to become Since most people won’t have used Google’s site migration tool before, here’s what it looks like once you press the “go” button:

In actual fact – there’s a minor bug in the tool. The address change is to the https version of (which GWT makes us register as a separate site) but that message incorrectly omits that. Fortunately, elsewhere in GWT its clear the omission is on Google’s side, not a typo from the SEO. It is most likely that the migration tool was developed before the need for Google to have separate verification codes for http and https versions of the site.
The hidden costs of a name change
There were a few “nay sayers” on Twitter upset that Majestic might be deserting it…

6 types of negative SEO to watch out for

The threat of negative SEO is remote but daunting. How easy is it to for a competitor to ruin your rankings, and how do you protect your site? But before we start, let’s make sure we’re clear on what negative SEO is, and what it definitely isn’t.Negative SEO is a set of activities aimed at lowering a competitor’s rankings in search results. These activities are more often off-page (e.g., building unnatural links to the site or scraping and reposting its content); but in some cases, they may also involve hacking the site and modifying its content.Negative SEO isn’t the most likely explanation for a sudden ranking drop. Before you decide someone may be deliberately hurting your rankings, factor out the more common reasons for ranking drops. You’ll find a comprehensive list here.Negative off-page SEOThis kind of negative SEO targets the site without internally interfering with it. Here are the most common shapes negative off-page SEO can take.Link farmsOne or two spammy links likely won’…