Search Engine for Internet – Need of the Hour

A person who gets associated with searching on the web may often wonder, “What is a search engine? How does it work? What does a Search Engine do?” So here we have come to answer this query in a well-fashioned manner.

A search engine is a tool or software developed to conduct searches on a website or an application (whether a desktop or an Android app). But the idea of a search engine didn’t remain limited to the searches on a single website or application. Instead, it has gained so much momentum that IT Giants like Alphabet Inc. and Microsoft have developed the search engines Google and Bing that can carry out searches over the whole internet. So, we can precisely define a search engine as:

“It is a web-based tool that enables users to find, locate, and access the information on the internet, i.e., the World Wide Web.”

Why do we need a search engine to find information online?

A Search Engine (i.e., GoogleBingYandexBaidu, etc.) can quickly return results by scanning the internet and indexing every page they find. These search results show up on millions of websites online. It would be almost impossible to find the exact or relevant information without it since the World Wide Web has grown enormously during the recent twenty years. Moreover, it is very time-consuming to visit the individual website by placing its URL in the browser’s address bar and looking for the relevant information. Also, we do not always have a list of all the website names for a piece of particular details. Search Engines on the internet overcome all these hurdles. How? It helps people find the information they are looking for online using keywords or phrases.

Moreover, a Search Engine dramatically behaves as a magical answering machine. It exists to understand, discover, and organize the web content to offer the most relevant results to people’s questions. They systematically search the World Wide Web for certain information specified in a textual search query. Simply, it is a program that helps people find what they are looking for online using keywords or phrases. Those keywords or phrases represent a web search query.

What is a Web Query?

A web search query or simply a web query is a particular keyword or phrase that people enter into the search box of Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yandex, Baidu, etc. Such a question aims to find and focus on what a person is looking for on the internet.

Web search queries distinguish themselves from other questions. They often are plain text and Boolean search directives that we rarely use. Moreover, they vary significantly from standard query languages governed by strict syntax rules as command languages with positional parameters or keywords.

How does a Search Engine work?

Since popular and giant search engines contain millions and sometimes billions of pages, many search engines display the results depending on their importance. Moreover, they commonly determine this importance using various algorithms.

The search engine collects all the data using a spider or crawler. That crawler visits every page on the World Wide Web to gather its information.

The crawler reads a web page thoroughly while visiting it. It then processes and indexes the data contained on the page. Often, this can involve the steps below:

  • First, the crawler strips out the stop words.
  • It records the remaining terms on the page and their density (frequency they occur).
  • The search engine spider also traces the links to other pages (outbound links).
  • Then records the information about the images.

The search engine uses the collected data to rank every page against a keyword or standard query. The rankings then determine the order and position of pages. When a user places that particular keyword in the search box, this position appears in the search results.

After the data processing, the search engine breaks the data into files, inserts it into a database, or loads it into memory. Users access it when they place a keyword or query while performing the search.

A person asks for a web query using some word or a phrase. The search engine looks at the following information about the websites before serving the search results:

  • the page titles,
  • URLs,
  • contents,
  • keywords it has indexed.

Furthermore, it uses algorithms (step-by-step operations) to produce a list of sites. Finally, it shows the most relevant websites at the top against a particular query we ask.

What is Search Engine Visibility?

Search engine or search visibility/SEO visibility is the traffic a website receives from its ranking in the organic search results.

Suppose your website ranks 3rd on the first page of search results against a specific keyword. However, according to a recent Google click-through rate (CTR) study, the third result in Google gets 18.7% of all clicks. Therefore, your website has a search visibility of 18.7% for that specific keyword.

How to access a search engine?

We access it through a browser on our computer, tablet, smartphone, or another device. One may visit the homepage of any search engine to perform a search. Today, most new browsers use Omnibox. Omnibox is a text box at the top of the browser. It allows users to type in a URL or a search query.

How can we access the search engine of a website?

The search engine is on a well-designed website’s top or side of each page. For example, our website has the search at the top right on the sidebar of every website page. A website search engine shows the results only from that website and not the entire internet. Also, some companies may use additional features through programming to make their search box usage easier.

Which search engine is the best?

There is not one among all the search engines better than others. However, many may argue that Google owns the best since it is the most popular and well-known. Yes, it is so popular that people often use it as a verb when telling someone to search for their question.


Microsoft’s Bing is also popular and used by many people. It does an excellent job of finding information and answering questions. Additionally, Bing powers the search in Yahoo and Windows 10.

Some users are more concerned about their privacy than the search engine’s popularity. They do not also accept sharing their personal information but rather compromise on the reliability of the results. Therefore, they prefer Duck Duck Go to the more popular Google or Bing. Duck Duck Go makes its users incognito. Moreover, it is an excellent solution for users concerned with how much information Google, Yandex, and Bing collect on them.

Do all search engines return the same results?

Every search engine has a different approach to finding and returning what a user is trying to find. Therefore, they use exclusive algorithms to index and associate data. Its results may be based on:

  • the location of the user,
  • what else the user has searched for,
  • and what results the other users preferred when they placed the same query or keyword.

Each search engine values these factors differently. It then offers exceptional results to users who have asked for the same information in various search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, Baidu, Yandex, etc.).

Is it a Necessity of the Hour?

It searches a database of information according to the query placed by a user. Then, it provides a list of results that best match the intent of that query. Many different search engines are available, each with capabilities and characteristics.

Archie was the first search engine ever developed. The users of it were developers, and they searched for FTP files. And the first text-based search engine was Veronica. Furthermore, Google is the most popular and well-known among all search engines worldwide. Other popular search engines include, Baidu, Bing, DuckDuckGo, AOL, and Yahoo.

The internet consists of billions of websites containing trillions of pages published by millions of publishers. One cannot find a piece of detailed information without the help of some automated tool or software. That software/tool must be AI-based so that it will be able to understand the user intent. This understanding will help learn the users’ behaviors placing the same query from different locations around the globe. As a result, all the data gathered will help serve the accurate results.

Considering the above facts, we can conclude that a search engine has revolutionized the present-day approach to accessing information. Therefore, it is not just software but also the necessity of the hour.

How many search engines are there in the world?

Many IT companies have individually developed more than a dozen of search engines. They have employed the knowledge of programming and Artificial Intelligence. Most of the search engines are available free of cost. The companies earn their revenue through various business models:

  • promoting their browser (Google advertises Chrome and Bing for the Microsoft Edge)
  • running Ads.

The companies are changing algorithms for the search continuously over the period with the changing demand of the users.

The famous Search Engines are:

  1. Google
  2. Bing
  3. Yahoo
  4. Yandex
  5. Baidu
  6. Duck Duck Go

Moreover, the social media platforms, like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc., possess search engines on their website/applications. It is so to facilitate the user finding the relevant information.

Have a glance at the Difference between a Browser and a Search engine.

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