Yep 2023: A New Search Engine Putting Privacy and Content Creators First


In the fast-paced world of search engines, one name that has been making waves is Yep. Back in 2019, Ahrefs, a well-known SEO toolset provider, announced its ambitious plan to develop its own search engine. 

Since then, Ahrefs has invested a staggering $60 million of its own funds into the creation of Yep. 

So, what is Yep all about? In this article, we’ll dive into the details and explore what we know so far about this intriguing search engine.

The Naming of Yep

You may be curious about the peculiar name ‘Yep’ and its origins. 

According to Ahrefs, Yep doesn’t mean any specific meaning. It simply emerged during a moment of inspiration while the team was watching Avatar cartoons with kids. 

The characters Aang and friends used the phrase “yip yip” to make their bison take off. 

After an extensive search for a suitable name, Ahrefs settled on ‘Yep’ as it is short, easy to remember, and distinctive.

Privacy and User Data

One of the key selling points of Yep is its commitment to privacy. 

Ahrefs has pledged that Yep will not collect any personally identifiable information, such as geolocation, name, age, or gender by default. 

Furthermore, users’ search history will not be stored anywhere. 

Instead, Yep will use combined search data to improve algorithms, fix spelling errors, and offer search recommendations.

In essence, Yep aims to strike a balance between providing a useful search experience and protecting user privacy.

Revenue-Sharing Model

Ahrefs’ search engine introduces an innovative revenue-sharing model. 

Referred to as a 90/10 revenue-sharing model, Ahrefs plans to share 90% of its advertising revenue with content publishers. 

The motivation behind this approach stems from the observation. This means Google’s search results often display content without users needing to click through to the respective websites. 

This practice results in reduced traffic for websites and subsequently leads to diminished revenue. 

Ahrefs aims to rectify this imbalance by ensuring content creators receive fair compensation for their work. 

Moreover, Yep hopes to nurture a more equitable search industry by sharing the majority of advertising profits with authors. 

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How Revenue-Sharing Works in Yep?

Now, let’s delve into the mechanics of how Yep’s revenue-sharing model will operate. 

Suppose Yep receives $100 from an advertiser; in that case, $10 will be retained by Yep, and the remaining $90 will be allocated to a distribution fund for content creators. 

Although specific details are still being finalized, creators will likely need to sign up and verify their identity using an account, such as an email or Twitter. 

Additionally, creators will be required to add a tag to their web pages. So, this step will allow Yep to track and distribute revenue based on the impact generated by their content. 

The definition of a “creator” encompasses various entities, including websites, brands, individuals, and publishers. 

So, here the goal is to empower independent creators and enable them to thrive in a search ecosystem that values their contributions.

Yep’s Search Quality and Technical Details

Yep places significant emphasis on search quality to establish itself as a viable alternative to established search engines like Google and Bing. 

AhrefsBot, which has been actively crawling the web for the past 12 years, collects website data for Yep. 

Ahrefs has plans to replace AhrefsBot with YepBot in the coming future.

Currently, AhrefsBot is the second most active web crawler, visiting over 8 billion web pages every 24 hours.

Yep employs a combination of content signals, link signals, and natural language processing to deliver relevant search results to users. 

Content signals refer to factors such as the relevance, quality, and freshness of the content. While link signals consider the authority and popularity of the linking websites. 

Natural language processing helps understand the intent behind search queries and provide accurate results.

Yep, the search results page (SERP) will have a clean and user-friendly design, with a focus on displaying high-quality organic results. 

Ads will be clearly marked and will not overshadow the organic listings. 

Ahrefs aims to provide a search experience that prioritizes relevance and user satisfaction.

Yep’s Future Plans

While Yep is still in its early stages, Ahrefs has ambitious plans for its search engine. 

The company intends to expand Yep’s search index, improve search quality, and introduce new features over time. 

Ahrefs acknowledges that competing with established search engines like Google is a daunting task. But they believe there is room for alternative search options that prioritize user privacy and content creators’ interests.

Ahrefs also plans to integrate Yep with their existing SEO toolset. 

This integration will allow SEO professionals to gain insights into how their web pages perform in Yep’s search results and make data-driven optimization decisions.

Feedback and User Involvement

Ahrefs encourages user feedback and actively seeks input to improve Yep. They have set up a dedicated feedback form where users can report bugs, suggest improvements, and share their experiences. 

Ahrefs is committed to listening to its users and refining Yep based on their needs and preferences.

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