Ahrefs reveals its new search engine: Yep

Ahrefs reveals its new search engine: Yep

Did you know that Ahrefs, a provider of SEO tool sets, revealed ambitions to launch its own search engine in 2019?

If you answered “yep,” you aren’t alone.

In the three years afterward, Ahrefs has been quite active, investing $60 million of its own money in the development of a new search engine called Yep.

What is Yep?

Yep is a generic online search engine. Yes, it will soon be available in all countries and in the majority of languages.

Ahrefs is pitching itself as a competitor to Googe. However, during the last two decades, we’ve seen a slew of Google competitors and “killers” come and go. So, for the time being, let’s simply call it a Google alternative.

So what is Yep banking on to become a true Google alternative? Two things:


By default, Yep will not gather personal information (e.g., geolocation, name, age, gender). Your Yep search history will not be saved.

According to the firm, aggregated search information will be used to enhance algorithms, spelling corrections, and search suggestions.

“In other words,” said Ahrefs CEO Dmytro Gerasymenko, “we do keep certain data on searches, but never in a personally identifiable form.” “For example, we will measure how many times a word is searched for and the location of the most clicked link.” However, we will not establish your profile in order to target advertising to you.”

What Yep will use is a searcher’s:

  • Entered keywords.
  • Language preference received from the browser.
  • Approximate geographical area at the origin of the search at the scale of a region or a city (deduced from the IP address).


Ahrefs’ search engine is designed using a 90/10 profit-sharing model, in which Ahrefs splits 90 percent of its advertising income with publishers.

The reason for this is that Google presents the material in its search results without requiring the user to go through to the website. This indicates that websites are losing visitors. Less traffic equals less money for many websites.

“Creators that enable search results need to be compensated for their efforts,” Gerasymenko added. “We watched how YouTube’s profit-sharing model boosted the whole video-making sector.” We aim to encourage the search business to reward talent properly by splitting advertising-income 90/10 with content writers.”

Here’s what Yep says:

“Let’s say that the biggest search engine in the world makes $100B a year. Now, imagine if they gave $90B to content creators and publishers.

Wikipedia would probably earn a few billion dollars a year from its content. They’d be able to stop asking for donations and start paying the people who polish their articles a decent salary.

There would be no more need for paywalls and affiliate links, so publishers who’ve had to resort to chasing traffic with clickbait articles and filling their pages with ads would be able to get back to doing investigative pieces and quality analysis. A citizen journalist uncovering corruption on the side of a full-time job could get compensated without having to spend time trying to monetize content.

And the best thing? You don’t have to be an expert to benefit.

Let’s say that you love pancakes more than anything else in the world. Now you have an incentive to grow that passion – imagine getting fairly paid to share creative recipes, publish photos of your creations and teach the rest of the world how they, too, can make the fluffiest pancakes ever. Independent creators everywhere will finally be able to flourish.”

All of that sounds nice in theory. But Yep is just launching.

DuckDuckGo, which debuted in 2008, receives the same number of queries each year (15.7 billion) that Google does in around two or three days. Even Microsoft Bing, which is owned by Microsoft, the world’s third-largest firm by market capitalization, has failed to significantly reduce Google’s search market share since 2009.

How Yep works

What actually important is the quality of the search results. That implies Yep will have to cater to searchers’ demands and requirements. So, how are they going about compiling those search results?


Yes, AhrefsBot is used to collect website data. Ahrefs stated that Ahrefs Bot will be replaced with RoBot in the “near future.”

According to Ahrefs, Ahrefs Bot crawls more than 8 billion URLs every 24 hours, making it the second most active crawler on the web, trailing only Google.

AhrefsBot has been crawling the web for 12 years. They were just using the AhrefsBot data to build their link database and SEO insights.


Every 15 to 30 minutes, the Yep search index is refreshed. Every day, the firm adds 30 million new web pages and removes 20 million.

Other technical details

According to Ahrefs, its Singapore data center is powered by around 1,000 servers, which store and analyze 100 petabytes of online data (webpages, links between them, and the search index). Each server makes use of at least two 100GB connections. To train large transformer models, some servers employ numerous GPU cards. Ahrefs intends to establish a data center in the United States before the end of the year.

More to come

I’ve contacted Ahrefs to get more information on their search engine. I’ll keep you updated when the replies come in.

Read More: Google Ads shares three automation best practices

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