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Glossary keyword - Metasearch Engine

Metasearch Engine

Metasearch Engine or All-in-One search Engine is an advanced tool that retrieves top results from various search engines and consolidates them all in a single search result. A metasearch engine is less of a search engine and more of a web portal. No two metasearch engines are the same as they are made using complex algorithms and differing parameters for ranking results. Such an engine makes a Federated Database System that integrates results from various engines. SearchSavvy was the first meta-engine. It retrieved results from 20 search engines simultaneously. The intent behind these engines was to save users’ time. Now, there are plenty – dogpile, ixquick, MetaGer, and sputrr are noteworthy examples.

How Metasearch Engines Work

When a user enters a query in a metasearch engine, the engine requests results from other search engines. There are various differing parameters, such as popularity, for showing search results. In the course of doing so, it also filters out duplicates. MetaGer gives you the option of filtering engines from which you want the results. You can also tailor search results. While dogpile groups the search according to various sources, ixquick makes listings after clustering and ranking. Some engines may also keep adding to the search result list as it loads in real-time.

The Pros and Cons

Metasearch engines bring fast results and get rid of duplicate search results as well. This means that if you search, you won’t see repeated results. Metasearch engines are suitable for times that you need quick answers and more information. Meta searches are clustered and thus, suitable for keyword research and optimization in SEO practices. They streamline your task of having to visit several engines. You can also do private searches and hide your IP addresses.

There are some disadvantages to meta searching too. The results might not be meaningful. If you need extensive material and a targeted result, it’s not the best place to search. User-experience remains an issue with metasearch engines too. Google is the most preferred search engine and has a whopping 90% of the market share.

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