Metasearch engines give users best search results: study

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Search engines deliver results that are dramatically different from one another, according to a study released by InfoSpace Inc., a developer of proprietary metasearch technologies.

The study showed that first-page results on Google, Yahoo, Windows Live and Ask overlap less than 1 percent.

The study showed that Dogpile.com provides users with the most relevant and useful information as it lists the top results from each of the leading search engines.

This study highlights that users do not find the results they need with any single search engine and that a metasearch offers the strongest and most efficient search listings.

The study, "Different Engines, Different Results," was conducted for InfoSpace Inc. by researchers from Pennsylvania State University in the United States and Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, in April. Metasearch technology, which InfoSpace develops, displays search results from multiple search engines, organized by relevancy.

Other key findings of the study include:

  • Only 0.6 percent of 776,435 first-page search results were the same across the top four Web search engines.
  • Between 38 percent and 46 percent of all searches fail to elicit a click on a first-page search result, don't meet users needs and drive users to try additional engines.
  • Web searchers on average use three search engines a month.
  • Search result rankings differ significantly across major search engines; only 3.6 percent of the No. 1 ranked, non-sponsored search results were the same across all search engines in a given query.

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