adam vincenzini

30 top-notch vertical search engines

80% of all internet sessions start with a search engine enquiry (and for most people, that means Google).

But, when it comes to specialist subject areas, we often want to be searching within an engine that gives us what we want in more detail.
For lack of a better term, these are called vertical search engines, and play an important role in how customers interact with products and information.

They’re also great tools to have up your sleeve if you’re a comms pro, giving you extra searching power.

Here are 30 examples worth bookmarking:
Flights / Travel
1. – the leading flights search engine, providing information about all carriers to help you find the best deal
2. – Very similar to SkyScanner and with an added ‘current searches’ widget to see what flights other people are searching for
3. – Nice and simple way to search for flights, hotels and rental car
4. – Searches for content from blogs, Twitter, Facebook and more
5. – Blog-specific search engine searching through more than 170 million blogs
6. – Wikio’s top blogs section is a great place to start a topic-specific blogs and content
7. – a reverse image search engine – this finds our where an image came from, how it is being used and where you can find the best resolution version
8. – Searches through more than 3 billion online photos 

9. – Search for people all over the world from a simple interface
10. – Aggregates public information from a number of sources to give a spread of person-specific information


11. – The best free discussion board and forum search tool out there


12. – Basic music search engine by artist and / or song title
13. – Search over 7,000,000 tracks from the one location
14. – Type in your favourite artist and then a map of similar artists will be returned (very cool)
15. – Search for and save your playlists in the cloud from this very slick site

Audio and Video

16. – The web’s leading podcast search directory
17. – Search over 35 million hours of video


18. -Instead of starting a new presentation slide from scratch, see if the one you need is here
19. – Search for files by type e.g. .ppt and .pdf etc

Domain names

20. – A great way to search for website domain names and generate names if you are struggling for ideas
21. – Another brainstorming tool to discover domain names


22. – Great for finding different file versions e.g. .png and .ico
23. – A standard icon search engine
24. – One of the most comprehensive icon search engines on the web, includes really useful sub-category search

Private search

25. – This engine allows you to search for sites without bring tracked at the other end

Similar websites

26. – Search for sites similar to the ones you love in a simple way


27. – Uses ‘slashtagging’ to narrow down your results
28. – Tag search multiple search engines for the latest content
29. – A social search community
30. – Another social search engine with desktop capability

While some of these are better alternatives to Google and the other major engines, for the most part, the big boys do it incredibly (incredibly) well.


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