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Story of Search Engines

Updated on July 18, 2014

Today, search engines have become essential to daily life. Indeed one search engine has become so ubiquitous that its name has entered the English language; any English speaker will know that you are going to research something on the internet using a search engine if you say “I will Google it”. Search engine use has become so instinctive that a young friend, who had lost his pen, typed “Where is my pen” into a search engine and confidently thought that the search engine would tell him where it was. It just shows that people now have an instinct that search engines will help them to discover anything.

However, Google is not the only search engine nor was it the first search engine available and many internet users prefer other search engines. It may be helpful to conduct some brief search engine reviews to discover how the biggest search engines became such an important part of daily life and major forces on the internet in such a short time. It might also be instructive to trace the growth of the largest Internet search engines and their share of the internet market to discover what makes a successful search engine.

The first search engine burst onto the internet in March 1994, when Jerry Yang and David Filo founded Yahoo. Yahoo later acquired Flickr, an image and video sharing site on the 20th March 2005. Yahoo then acquired, an internet network site, which is devoted to college football and basketball recruitment, on 2nd June 2007. On 17th May 2013 Yahoo acquired Tumblr, a micro-blogging and social network platform. While none of these acquisitions carries the Yahoo brand name, Yahoo also has products, which do carry the Yahoo brand name.

Yahoo Revenues for 2013

  • Employees: 12,200
  • Revenue: $4.68 billion
  • Operating Income $589 million
  • Net Income $1.36 billion
  • Total Assets $16.80 billion
  • Total Equity $13.07


Yahoo was the only Internet search engine for some four years, however, on the 4th September 1998 Larry Page and Serge Brin established Google. Google’s original name was ‘Backrub’ because of its ability to find web site back links.

Google’s products include search tools, advertising services, communication, publishing and development tools, products relating to maps, such as Google Earth and Google Maps, statistical and analytical tools, operating systems, Desktop applications, mobile web applications, mobile specific stand alone applications and hardware.

Google’s 2013 Revenues

  • Employees: 48.829
  • Revenues: $59.825 billion
  • Operating Income: $13.966 billion
  • Net Income: $12.92 billion
  • Total Equity $87.309 billion


Microsoft created its Bing search engine in June 2009, following the success and popularity of Yahoo and Google across the world. Possible names, for what is now Bing, included Live Search, Windows Live Search and MSN Search. Bing is Microsoft’s only Internet product.

Bing’s Revenues for 2013

  • Revenues: $869 million
  • Loss: $283 million

Search engines are part of people’s daily lives. They satisfy billions of user requests every day. Customer satisfaction and numbers of users are vitally important to an efficient search engine business, search engine companies, who offer unbeatable customer support, retain their customers. Search engines, offering improved, efficient customer support software, are much more likely to be successful.

Social networks have added search engines to their websites, so while users are telling their followers that they have purchased something or been somewhere pleasant, those followers can immediately research the product or venue directly on the social network page. This is likely to prove important and lucrative to search engine companies in the coming years.


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