Ask Jeeves Search Engine Optimization Strategy

*Please note: Ask Jeeves is now known as

Ask Jeeves was launched in 1996 by David Warthen and Garrett Gruenera as a natural-language search site. It was the first major search engine that allowed users to pose questions the way they would to another human, instead of crafting the complex
query strings that many engines required for a specific search request. For instance, it encouraged users to type in complete questions such as “why is the sky blue?”, or “where do I buy widgets?” instead of the short queries typically used at other search engines.
This novel approach quickly made Ask Jeeves very popular among Internet users.

Ask Jeeves went public in July 1999, and began acquiring properties thereafter. One of its first acquisitions was Direct Hit, in February 2000. It bought Direct Hit for its groundbreaking popularity technology, and incorporated it into AskJeeves results. This technology uses “click popularity” as a way of measuring the relevance of a document. Ask Jeeves delivers its search technologies and services through its own Web sites at Ask Jeeves,, and Teoma.

Free SEO AnalysisAsk Jeeves’ format, which lists the search results under a variety of subheadings, can be confusing both for webmasters trying to optimize for it, and for users who want to understand results that do not seem to match their interests. The key to remember when considering search engine optimization for this engine, is that Ask Jeeves creates its search index by combining the results from its internal directory, DMOZ or Open Directory Project listings, click popularity technology, and results from their partner sites. With the exception of click popularity, you can optimize a web site for each of these contributors.
You can help your click popularity rate if you ensure that your website has lots of good relevant content that draws and keeps visitors.

The Teoma Search Engine is the newest addition to the Ask Jeeves Web Properties family. Teoma Is a Webcrawler/robot that constantly searches the web by following hypertext links, building an increasing index of website pages for searching purposes. Since it is always gathering data, it creates a database of information that is always up-to-date.

Teoma attempts to measure both authority and relevance in delivering results. Authority is determined by reviewing the quality of a website’s content, using “Subject-Specific Popularity.” This algorithm ranks a website based on the number of same-subject pages that reference it, as opposed to simply the number of links pointing to it from other websites on dissimilar topics.

Note: Teoma is no longer offering pay-for-inclusion. The Teoma webcrawler is geared to automatically list your site upon locating it. If your website is optimized for search engines, Teoma will find and list it.

Ask Jeeves’ results come from the following

  1. Ask Jeeves’ human-edited index
  2. DMOZ or Open Directory Project listings
  3. Teoma
  4. Next comes Ask Jeeves’ metasearch section.
    • StreamSearch
    • Overture