Currently, search engines around the world together receive around 500,000,000 searches per
day. The searches are done with the help of keywords: as a rule, people type a short phrase consisting of two to five keywords to find what they are looking for. It may be information, products, or services.
Top Search Engines for the first 8 months of 2010
In response to this query, a search engine will pick from its huge database of Web pages those results it considers relevant for the Web surfer’s terms, and display the list of these results to the
surfer. The list may be very long and include several million results (remember that nowadays the number of pages on the Web reaches 2.1 trillion, i.e. 2,100,000,000,000); so the results are displayed in order of their relevancy and broken into many pages (most commonly 10 results per
page). Most Web surfers rarely go further than the first page of results, unless they are
considerably interested in a wide range of materials (e.g. for a scientific research). One reason for this is that they commonly find what they look for on the first page without the need to dive in any deeper.
That’s why a position among the first 10 results (or “top-10 listing“) is a coveted goal. There used to be a great variety of search engines, but now after major reshuffles and partnerships there are just several giant search monopolies that are most popular among Web surfers and which need to be targeted by optimizers.
There are – and the search engines are aware of this – more popular searches and less popular
searches. For instance, a search on the word “myrmecology” is conducted on the Web much
more rarely than a search for “Web hosting”. Search engines make money by offering special high positions (most often called “sponsored results“) for popular terms, ensuring that a site will
appear to Web surfers when they search for this term, and that it will have the best visibility. The more popular the term, the more you will have to pay for such a listing.