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Study Finds That People Are Less Likely to Use Google If Given the Choice

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

Search Engine Study Explores Shift in Users Preference For Google Alternatives

Have you ever imagined a world without using Google to carry out searches? Seems pretty far fetched, right? Maybe not so much. According to one recent study, users’ preferences may be shifting away from Google in favour of other search options. The study, commissioned by private search engine, DuckDuckGo, found that a large group of people would prefer to use non-Google search engines if they had the choice. The goal of the study was to determine which search engines people would choose if presented with a preference menu on their Android devices containing other search menu options besides just Google. Over 3,000 adults living in the US, UK, Germany, and Australia took part in the study, and were presented both 4 and 8 search engines to choose from. Source: DuckDuckGo DuckDuckGo found that in each country it surveyed, participants that were presented with 8 search engine options were more likely to select non-Google search engines. “We found that in each surveyed country, people select the Google alternatives at a rate that could increase their collective mobile market share by 300%-800%, with overall mobile search market share immediately changing by over 10%. (Of course, this is dependent on which search engines are on the search preference menu),” the study said.

So, What Search Engines Would Users Prefer?

As for what people chose instead of Google, the study found that DuckDuckGo was the second most selected search engine in the preference menus, indicating an increasing demand for private search engine options. Source: DuckDuckGo DuckDuckGo also asked study participants what factors would cause them to use a different search engine. The top response was “better quality results,” followed by “if it didn’t collect any personal data about me or my searches.”

What Does All of This Mean?

The findings suggest that smartphone users aren’t aware that they have the ability to switch their default search engine. And those who do know they can change their preferences are met with obstacles, according to DuckDuckGo. “…those who do attempt to change their Android search defaults face obstacles like hard-to-change home screen search widgets. Google’s pervasiveness in search is difficult to dissipate; the company has many levers that exert magnetic forces, pulling people into its search engine,” the study said. But as more people become familiar with alternative search engine options and the ability to change preferences on their smartphones, DuckDuckGo expects an even greater shift over time. However, the study also added that Android features such as Google Assistant, use of other Google products like Gmail, along with Google prompts such as pop-up boxes, could potentially draw people back to using 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

10/25/2022

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

07/22/2022

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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