Former Google Staff Start a New Ad-Free Search Engine New Search Engine Neeva Already Valued at $300M

author image Written by: Nicole McCormick           Categories - In The News

After leaving a company, many former employees will branch off and start their own venture. But what happens when the employees in question worked for the biggest internet company in the world and are attempting to create a brand-new search engine to compete with Google? That’s what two former Google employees are on a quest to find out.

Sridhar Ramaswamy, who ran Google’s ad division for 15 years, partnered with Google’s former VP of Monetization at YouTube, Vivek Raghunathan, to create their own search engine called Neeva.

Based in Mountain View, California, which is only three miles from Google’s headquarters, Neeva has recruited several other former Google employees to work for the company.

According to Search Engine Journal, what sets Neeva apart from Google is that the platform runs without any advertising. In order to earn revenue, Neeva will operate on a subscription basis, charging users between $5 and $10 per month.

Neeva’s goal is for users to see search results that aren’t dictated by advertisers.

A description of the new search engine on Neeva’s website says:

“Search is the gateway to the world’s information, and with Neeva, we want to help you experience the Internet in a new way—free of distractions, prying eyes and frustration.”

While Neeva doesn’t promise not to collect user data, user privacy is a big priority.

Neeva not only adheres to the Google API Services User Data Policy, but doesn’t share user information across accounts or apps, or with advertisers or third parties.

Users also have a lot of control over their data. When using the search engine, users can:

  • Access their personal data

  • Update or correct any information

  • Request restrictions or deletion

While it may seem incomprehensible that any search engine could ever rival Google,  Neeva is actually one of many alternative search engines that are gaining popularity among internet users due to growing privacy concerns.

For instance, DuckDuckGo is an increasingly popular search engine with privacy protections in place.

Even still, Google remains the most popular and most trusted search engine according to a recent survey.

Neeva is currently in beta testing and has not yet been launched, but is expected to be rolled out sometime this year.

In the meantime, tens of thousands of people are already signed up to Neeva’s wait list and the search engine has raised $40 million to help accelerate the launch. To date, Neeva has generated over $77.5 million in funding and is valued at $300 million.

Once it is formally launched, it will be interesting to see if Neeva is able to build the same level of trust and popularity as Google.

Nicole McCormick

Nicole is a wordsmith wizard, passionate about the written word and an avid storyteller who uses creatively crafted prose to help bring your brand’s story to the next level. A former journalist with writing credits in both local and national news publications and a few newspaper awards under her belt, Nicole now enjoys telling your stories and finding new and creative ways to create valuable content that resonates with audiences in the digital landscape.

Google’s Spam Update Has Rolled Out


Last week, Google announced the October 2022 Spam Update would be rolling out. The update began on October 19th but it took less than 48 hours to complete, Search Engine Land reports. Users didn’t expect such a quick turnaround from a spam update but here we are.

What Is The Update & How Does It Work?

Google’s October 2022 Spam Update is a new search ranking algorithm. This means its impacts will be visible in search results, however you might be impacted too. This spam update was global and affects all languages, Search Engine Land reports.

Google expected the spam update to take up to a week to rollout but it was quicker than most expected. Users can see on Google’s Search Ranking Updates page where the updated was added and listed as complete on October 21st. Google’s spam update is meant to attack harmful stolen content or malicious websites.

Read More: Google Launches October 2022 Spam Update

Here is what Google says about the October 2022 Spam Update:

“While Google’s automated systems to detect search spam are constantly operating, we occasionally make notable improvements to how they work. When we do, we refer to this as a spam update and share when they happen on our list of Google Search ranking updates. For example, SpamBrain is our AI-based spam-prevention system. From time-to-time, we improve that system to make it better at spotting spam and to help ensure it catches new types of spam.”

Previous Spam Updates

As Google mentions their AI-based spam prevention system, you might be wondering how many spam updates there have been before. And more importantly, what to do if you’re sit has been hit.

When you have a look at Google’s Search Ranking Updates page, users can see that 2021 was a big year for spam updates. The last one rolled out in November 2021 and before that there was a two part update in July.

Read More: Google Offers Insights Into How It Deals With Spam

What Do Users Think About The Update?

Now, you might be wondering what people are saying about the October 2022 Spam update and if many users have been impacted. Here’s what SEO expert Glenn Gabe says about the update and what impacts he sees.

Search Engine Land reports on what users can expect from this update’s impacts.

“Spam updates target specific guideline violations. Google did not say if this was links, content or other forms of spam, but rather just said it is spam-related in general,” says Barry Schwartz. With such a wide gap between spam updates, users could be waiting another year before Google runs one again.

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Smart Campaigns Will Be Gone For Good Soon


Google began rolling out automatic updates to convert Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max – Search Engine Land reports.

For most users, the updates will finish rolling out in two months. They will receive a notification around 2 or 3 weeks before the updates take effect. They will also be notified of the specific date when the campaigns will be converted. However, some Smart Shopping campaigns, like the ones using vehicle ads, will be completed early next year.

Read More: Google Updated Performance Max Campaigns

Don’t Wait For Google

You don’t have to wait for Google to do this for you. Actually, you shouldn’t – take this into your own hands and have more control over the settings of your campaigns.

If you want to update campaigns on your own, because you’re smart, strong, and pretty – you can do that by using the ‘one click’ upgrade tool.

Whether your campaigns are automatically- or self-upgraded with the tool, all the history and learnings from your previous Smart Shopping Campaigns, along with its settings are automatically transferred over to your new Performance Max campaigns.

Read More: Google Performance Max Getting 7 New Updates

New Ad Creation Tools

Google also launched three new ad creation tools which could help drive better results, especially on YouTube:

  • Asset Storage
  • Video Ad Templates
  • Voice-over Audio

These new tools should help advertising teams out there create and collaborate on campaigns without leaving the ads platform.

Read More: Discovery Ad Users Get Four New Features

Read More: Data-driven Attribution Becomes The Default?

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