What is Yandex?
Yandex is the Russian search that most Russians use. In the land of Czars Google is not king.
Yandex stand for Yet Another Indexer. It is Moscow based, has millions of users and bloggers love it in Russia for reasons listed below.
Why is Yandex so popular in Russia?
Yandex is popular because it understand the Russian language. It has a superior understanding of Russian cases and idioms and natural language. It is linguistically advanced. In its algorithm it can tell the difference between good Russian writing and poor Russian writing.
Therefore, in Yandex has a better user experience. I know this sounds hard to believe because of Google and Microsoft’s massive resources. But the best chess program in the world is not made by a large American company but a single Czech programmer, and it is called Rybka. So not every is always about money and monopoly for quality. In the Russian language Yandex is the best.
Yandex also has a minimilst design and runs fast.
I have tested it myself and I like its results.
It has a strong local search, which is very good for every city in Russia. Further, it has strong anti-spam features, some say better than the big G.
I wanted to invest in Yandex, I wrote the company and their reply was they are just a small private company quietly printing Russian rubles.
Here is an excerpt from their reply. It was from Ekaterina Zhukova in Investor relations.
Thank you very much for your interest in Yandex and sorry to disappoint you Mark but Yandex is a private company currently and we do not offer our shares on any public market.
Please note that if you want to track the company developments and achievements, please go to http://company.yandex.com/
Therefore, I will have to look for other places to invest or wait for the Yandex IPO. The reply was very personal and professional. I like that in a company.
Yandex like companies in other lands
There are a few other places where Google does not rule. The Czech republic has seznam.cz China has Baidu. Google is mostly and English language search engine, which is ironic as its founder Sergey Brin is Russian.
Russian nationalism and Yandex
The Russians are very nationalistic. They love mother Russia. If they have a choice they will use something from Russia rather than their old nemesis. I mean if the French launched a search in the USA would American go running to use it or an American search? This is why Russians prefer yandex.ru.
However, when all is said and done the reason Yandex is so popular is because it works for the Russian language. Believe me I study Russian a bit and know Polish. Slavic languages are very different than English. Even with the Polish Google I get funny results sometimes resulting from it not fully understanding noun cases for example. The endings are really crazy in the Russian languages. And this is exactly what Yandex understands. It can change the meaning of a Russian phrases totally.
I would be curious if Yandex will ever become a international search or stay more a country specific. I am also going to continue to watch on the Yandex IPO side. Either way try it out, it is made for Russian but Yandex is not bad in English either for fun.