The internet is a huge place, and while there’s a variety of search engines available, it’s undeniable that Google is the top player: it handles roughly 77% of web searches around the world. But with that in mind, it’s still an impressive feat when an underdog reaches a milestone, especially one with goals different from the entrenched leader. That’s the case this week, as the anonymous search engine DuckDuckGo hit 30 million direct searches in a single day.
For those unfamiliar, DuckDuckGo allows users to perform completely private searches, with no tracking of personal information or location, and no browser cookies. In a time when web giants like Google and Facebook experience privacy scandals almost regularly, DuckDuckGo’s achievement shows that more and more people are becoming concerned with how and where their data is being collected.
The search engine has seen significant growth in the last few years. After being founded in 2008, DuckDuckGo says it took them seven years to see 10 million direct searches per day, another two years to reach 20 million, and now they’ve hit 30 million less than a year later.
While DuckDuckGo managed to reach the 30 million searches milestone twice in the last week, that’s still a drop in the bucket compared to the 3.5 billion daily searches handled by Google. They also trail behind several other established search engines, like Yahoo, Baidu, and even Bing. According to NetMarketShare.com, DuckDuckGo is estimated to make up only 0.18% of global searches, but they still beat AOL’s 0.03%.