Searching Google for a Search Engine

I’ve Googled many things in my life; it’s just one of my many talents. However, I’ve never had a need to search for a search engine. It makes sense. If someone has the means to search for a search engine, then they really don’t need to look any further.

I was curious, though, being in an industry that’s obsessed with search engine rankings. Who would rank #1 for “search engine”?

Well, here’s the search engine results page (SERP):

A search for a search engine

Interesting, right?

Clearly, the first thing anyone will notice is the the answer to a search for “search engine” according to Google is not Google, but Bing. What’s really strange, though, is that Google doesn’t appear anywhere on the first page!

I did notice Duck Duck Go appears in the top 10. It’s definitely superior for informational searches. When I am looking for some small tidbit of information, I generally try not to click any search results, but glean the answer purely from the results description text.

So, we have Bing, Altavista, Duck Duck Go, and even Ask (which is getting out of the search engine game) show up in a search for “search engine”. No Google. What is Google then, if not a search engine, and more importantly, how do they not rank for the term?

Is Google manually keeping themselves out of these results? Or does analyzing the web really give no relevancy to Google as a search engine?

(Rerunning the search sometimes gives me Altavista or Dogpile in the first position, but Bing is most consistent for me. How are your results? Signed in and out?)