SEO tool Ahrefs invests $60M in building creator-friendly search engine, ‘Yep’

Ahrefs just told me they've been developing their very own search engine on the sly, plowing $60 million of resources into it, which they're calling Yep , straight from the desk of "didn't see that coming. 

Rather than running a rel. search index, it runs its own search index

My opinion on Yep is that it seems kind of daft, but at least it is one character shorter than Bing, another major search engine I'll never use.  

Despite the name, Yep is taking a fresh new approach to internet advertising, claiming that 90% of its ad revenue goes to content creators.  

Imagining a future in which the largest search engine in the world gives $90B to content creators and publishers, the company paints a picture of what it wants the company to become.  

This is an impressively quixotic windmill fight for Ahrefs, a bootstrapped company. Its CEO explains why he thinks so

YouTube's profit-sharing model made the entire video-making industry thrive, so creators deserve to be compensated for their work. 

“We are giving a push to treat talent fairly in the search industry by splitting advertising profits 90/10 with content authors,” says Ahrefs founder and CEO, Dmytro Gerasymenko, pointing out that his search engine has a heavy focus on privacy.certainprivacy 

collect data on searches, but never in a way that can be linked to an individual. For example, we track how many times a word is searched and where the most clicks are coming from.

This is what drew me to Yep. It sounds idealistic, but damn it. In contrast to the social media-poisoning cesspool of chaos and fake news we often find ourselves in today, it represents the faintest echoes of a web more innocent and hopeful.