• Your IP: 34.239.147.7 (VA, United States)
  • Your ISP: Amazon.com
  • Your Status: Unprotected
  • Get Protected

August 22, 2019

How Do Private Search Engines Make Money?

Posted by

In recent years, the supremacy of search engine giants like Google and Bing has begun to be challenged. Growing concerns over privacy violations have driven people to find safer alternatives in private engines like HotBot.com, DuckDuckGo, and Startpage. Unlike Google, these search alternatives don’t use tracking cookies or collect user information at all, keeping your identity safe. However, much of Google’s massive income is generated through the use of targeted ads created by the data they collect. So how do private search engines, with no saved user information, create revenue in order to operate?

  • Contextual ads
  • Affiliate links
  • Shopping search
  • Donations

Contextual Ads

While private engines don’t use targeted ads to earn income, that doesn’t mean they don’t advertise at all. Instead, they use contextual ads. The difference between the two all comes down to tracking. If you were to look up socks on Google, Google would store the information that you’re interested in socks. If you later look up brownie recipes, Google might still show you ads for socks because it knows that’s what you were interested in before. That’s called a targeted ad.

Contextual ads are based on keywords. If you look up socks, you will be shown an ad for socks. If you look up brownie recipes, you will be shown an ad for brownie recipes. As soon as you navigate away from a page, the private engine forgets what you were looking for and any other ads you see will be directly related to the search you are making. This is how we at HotBot.com earn most of our revenue.

Private Search Engines Make Money Through Affiliate Links

Many private engines earn income through the use of affiliate partnerships. With this method, they partner with a company or organization interested in increasing traffic to their website. The partner provides them with a link which contains a specific ID or username. The affiliate partner is able to log how many times the link is clicked and pays a small amount of money to the search engine for every click, as a reward for the engine generating traffic.

Shopping Search

Some private search engines are beginning to integrate shopping features into their platforms. When you make a search, they might include a sidebar that shows you where you can buy products related to that search. Every time a user clicks one of those products, the search engine earns a little bit of revenue. This method is very similar to the use of affiliate links but specifically directs to ecommerce stores, whereas an affiliate link can direct to any web page the partner wants traffic for.

Donations

Some private engines were designed as non-profit organizations and rely on donations for income instead of ads or affiliate programs. This is similar to how Wikipedia generates income to continue running.


Private search engines are still small but they’re also mighty, and growing every day.

You can start protecting your privacy today by browsing the web safely with HotBot.com.

]]>
Posted by

More Blog Posts

Privacy Tip of the Week: Buy a New Router

June 11, 2022

Privacy Tip of the Week: Buy a New Router

If you’re using wi-fi to read this article, it was probably made possible by a router. A router takes a wired internet connection – such as may be provided to a computer via an ethernet cable – and makes it available wirelessly. This allows devices like phones, tablets, laptops, and smart devices like home assistants, […] Read more
6 Expert Tips to Avoid Getting Hacked in the Year 2019

May 25, 2022

Expert Tips to Avoid Getting Hacked in the Year 2022

By October 2021, more hacks had already occurred than had taken place in the entirety of the year before. As fast as software is developed to protect user data, software is developed to breach it. Hacks take place approximately every 39 seconds and an estimated one in three Americans will be affected by a major […] Read more
Password Manager Header

May 15, 2022

Privacy Tip of the Week: Use a Password Manager

Passwords are the gatekeepers of our lives. They protect our devices, social media, and other personal information from prying eyes. However, with so many different accounts requiring passwords, it can be a hassle to remember them all (if not an impossibility). Because of that, many people choose to use the same password for everything, which […] Read more

Grab the limited deal now!

Our best price ever! Get HotBot VPN for 66% off today. Our app can be used on up to 6 devices at a time, doesn't limit speeds, and increases security and freedom when using the internet.

{{ localCurrencyFn }}
1 Year Plan
{{ plans[1].currency }}

{{ trialPriceNumeric(1) }}

/mo

Save 66%

{{ plans[1].oldPrice }} {{ plans[1].formatPrice }}

Billed every year.

6 Month Plan
{{ plans[0].currency }}

{{ trialPriceNumeric(0) }}

/mo

Save 20%

{{ plans[0].oldPrice }} {{ plans[0].formatPrice }}

Billed every six months.

1 Month Plan
{{ plans[2].currency }}

{{ trialPriceNumeric(2) }}

/mo

{{ plans[2].monthPrice }}

Billed every month.

Get the HotBot VPN Mobile App.

Download our apps for iOS and Android