A brief history of search – and it didn’t start with Google!

Whether you operate predominantly online or work from a bricks-and-mortar store as well as maintain a website, it’s safe to say that every digital move you make is dominated by search.

Whilst we often dream of simpler times, Google’s ever-changing algorithms certainly keep us on our toes, giving us helpful pointers to achieve the visibility we need to take our businesses to new heights on the net. With one eye always on what’s next in the world of search, many of us don’t appreciate how it all began.

Here we take a closer look at the history of search, and contrary to popular belief it didn’t begin with the world’s favourite search engine…

Archie – not Google – started it all

A mere year after the invention of the World Wide Web, the very first search engine made its appearance. Archie was launched in 1990 and offered a rudimentary but rather impressive index of downloadable files.

The limited data available on the web during this time saw Archie provide search results as simple listings, a far cry from the content-rich snippets and web pages we’re used to today. It wasn’t until a year later that the creator of the internet, Sir Tim Berners-Lee, devised a library of URLs and fostered very beginnings of the internet we know and love.

Yahoo! makes its grand debut

Yahoo! was created in 1994 by David Filo and Jerry Yang. The search engine provided access to the very first pool of web pages. But whilst informational sites could be created and added for free, business websites had to pay a hefty price for the privilege.

During this time, the first pages were indexed. The data requirements were however much too high to provide the fast, reliable searches we’re used to today.

The unfortunately named Backrub was created

It was in 1995 when Stanford University students Larry Page and Sergey Brin met. The infamous duo formulated a search engine called Backrub, which used mathematical expression to organise and allow access to the world’s information like never before.

Backrub became Google; and after its foundation in 1998, investment from a slew of Silicon Valley investors and academics, and a move to a better equipped garage (Google’s first office), the rest they say is history!

Despite its many competitors from past and present, Google remains the world’s most used search engine, with its speed, choice, relevancy and accuracy just some of the reasons why it’s so revered.

To discover more about how to craft an SEO strategy that satisfies your business, budget and the search engines, please contact us today.

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