Apparently Ask is more often used by people asking questions, for example “where can I buy car insurance” while the typical Google user just searches for “car insurance”.
Cesar Mascaraque, European managing director of Ask, comments:
All cars have four wheels. No-one wants a car with one wheel.
The 20 year-old is never going to use us and, you know what, I don’t care.
The fundamental issue is that for 99% of queries Google works perfectly. There is no way for another search engine to compete especially in the UK. Ask is trying to compete by using TV and newspaper adverts targeting less older, less savvy users who want to ask questions rather than type keywords.
Ask is still seeing good volumes according to the BBC:
But searching on Ask remains relatively healthy. During August 46 million searches were conducted via Ask in the UK which accounts for one in five of all people using a search engine.
Considering Ask has only a 2% market share it’s interesting to see they have a 20% share of the search volume. Do Ask users need to search more to get their answers or are they just looking for more things?