What Are Different Types of Search Engines - A Complete Guide

Understand the types of search engines that can help you to find exactly what you want to know on the web. Right from Google to Bing and Ask Yahoo! Here you can find various search engines and their benefits.

Blog Author
Manoj Shukla

Dec 28, 2022

In this digitally transformed world, it’s easy to search for anything on the web today. This is all because of the availability of search engines. Whatever you want to find on the internet, you can use search engines. Right from Google to Bing and Ask Yahoo! you can see numerous options for search engines. Do you know which search engine to use for your queries? Well, there are different types of search engines that can help you to find exactly what you want to know on the web.

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Major Types of Search Engines

Search engines play a crucial role in finding something on the web or optimizing a web page's ranking. Let’s have a close look at different kinds of search engines and their benefits:

Crawler-Based Search Engines

Crawler-based search engines aka spider search engines, this sort of search engine mainly use a bot or spider to scan web pages. Bots, crawlers, or spiders that are used for searching websites and results are mainly software programs. In this type of search engine, the crawler scans various links to websites, gathers information about websites, and then it indexes the information as a result.

The purpose of this search engine is to index the websites’ contents from across the internet. Because of this, relevant websites can appear in search engine results. Some search engine examples of this type of search engine are Bing and Google that is used by millions of users every day. According to the Global search engine market share report 2022, more than 94 percent market share belongs to Google.

Here’s why the crawler-based search engine is the most used:
  • It’s super easy to use.
  • Consists of a vast amount of web pages for precise search results.
  • Familiarity of users with Google as the most common crawler-based search engine.

Human-powered Directories

Other crucial types of search engines are human-powered directories which work as internet search tools. It helps in searching for information by subject categories. In this type of search engine, there won’t be the usage of a spider, crawler, or any other software program to scan websites. Rather than software programs, this search engine uses web directories that are created by human editors.

As the name suggests, the data in this search engine is maintained by humans only. Though this search engine has many benefits, it is still not in much use as crawler ones. Automated search engines such as crawler ones have to remove directories from the web. Let’s have a look at how this search engine works:

  • In human-powered directories, the owner of the website submits a short description of its site to the directory. Along with the description, the category will also be submitted.
  • After the site’s submission, a manual review process takes place to either approve or reject the listing. If there’s any need then the editorial staff will add the appropriate category to the site.
  • Whatever keywords the site owner has entered in a search box, it is matched with the site’s description. It is only the description that matters during the search.

Advantages of human-powered directories

  • s to search things quickly as it has fewer results.
  • The editor will review each page well for surety of safety search.

Hybrid Search Engine

Among different types of search engines, hybrid search engines are also crucial. As the name suggests, this search engine has the feature of both manual indexing and crawler- based for site listing on the search results. In simple words, it is an amalgamation of directory and crawler-based search engines.

Google is one of the most common crawler search engines in which the crawlers are used as a primary mechanism. Whereas, human-powered directories are used as the secondary mechanism. One crucial thing to keep in mind is that more search engines are now shifting to a hybrid model. Human directories are somewhat disappearing so most users use hybrid or crawler-based search engines opined an SEO expert in Bangalore.

Meta Search Engine

A meta-search engine is mainly a web portal that collects the search results for keywords or phrases. With the help of a proprietary algorithm, meta-search engine searches result from different search engines. In simpler work, it will take the results from different search engines and then will combine them to form one big listing. The main work of this Metasearch is to retrieve data from different search engines. Let’s see how this search engine works:

  • In this search engine, a user first creates a request for the search. Then, the search engine sends the requests from the search slot to numerous other search engines.
  • ow, the metasearch engine server will have to wait for answers that it has requested from others search engines.
  • After this, the results will be available which are according to other search engines’ guidelines and algorithms.
  • During the search, the duplicate results will be filtered out so one URL doesn’t appear twice in the search result.

Advantages of Meta search engine:

  • The meta-search engine has an unlimited knowledge base as it uses different search engines to get the search results.
  • There is no chance to skip any crucial information during the search as it uses various other search engines.
  • Another crucial advantage of this search engine is that it can save you time. With this, you don’t have to go through multiple search engines to compare the results.
  • One of the vital advantages of meta-search engines is that it offers privacy to a search. It can hide the IP address of the user from the search engine.


Various types of search engines are there that have their features and benefits. Today, the most commonly used search engine is the crawler-based search engine that uses the advanced techniques of AI and bots. Earlier, human directories were a great option for searching anything on the web.