Qwant is a French-based privacy-focused search engine, albeit I have always understood it to be a front-end to Bing (similar to DuckDuckGo) for all practical intents and purposes. I have tried it on occasion but I generally prefer DuckDuckGo for my Bing front-end purposes (after not prefering anything having do with Bing when Microsoft blacklisted The New Leaf Journal without explanation). Back in 2021, I wrote an article on alternative search engines (most of which were front-ends) and praised Qwant for relying on OpenStreetMap for its maps, noting that DuckDuckGo uses Apple Maps. According to AlternativeTo, Qwant Maps has been discontinued subsequent to Qwant being acquired by Synonfonium (I am not up to date on this change). Being AlternativeTo, AlternativeTo recommends alternatives to Qwant maps. I would personally recommend OpenStreetMap in browsers and Organic Maps as an app.

Integrating Koko Analytics stats by Mikko Saari (relevanssi.com)
It’s possible to integrate all kinds of external data to Relevanssi weights. Koko Analytics is a great analytics plugin. It collects stats about your visitors and stores them in the local database, which means those stats are available for Relevanssi. For some sites, this makes a lot of sense. For...

I have been using Koko Analytics on The New Leaf Journal since 2020 and I also use it on this site. Moreover, I use Relevanssi Light to improve on WordPress’s (sub-standard) default search after having briefly used the much heavier and more robust Relevanssi plugin. While I plan to stick with Relevanssi Light because it is good enough for my search-improvement purposes, I was still interested to read a 2022 post by the developer of the Relevanssi plugins about “[i]ntegrating Koko Analytics stats as a factor in the weight calculations [fior Relevanssi Premium].” In short, he demonstrates a PHP snippet that would allow Relevanssi Premium users to slightly favor popular posts in searches. This is very neat and I would definitely try it if I were running Relevanssi Premium. For those of you with less intense search needs or limited resources, however, I recommend giving Relevanssi Light a try — it is as good as it is simple.

marcinzm (Hacker News)
The money from showing a pancake ad make them do that. It's not a search problem. They know it's not a good experience but they also know it makes them more money than not showing it. The goal is money. Your experience is merely a means to that end.

I starred this very insightful comment by Hacker News user marcinzm about search engines. The commenter noted the obvious, that big tech search shows ads because its purpose is to generate revenue through ads. But I appreciated the commenters putting it in terms of means and ends. Ideally, the user wants a search engine to be responsive to his or her query. That is, entering the query is the means for achieving the end of finding a useful result. However, commenter marcinzm noted that the end for the search provider is money and the search experience is a means toward creating more ad revenue. While this is not a novel point, it is phrased well here. One good anecdote is site-specific search, but this is an area that needs more work.

I received an email from the Bing Webmaster Team:

We hope this message finds you well! We've noticed it's been a while since you last visited Bing Webmaster Tools, and we've genuinely missed having you around!
Webmaster Tools has undergone some exciting updates and improvements recently, and we think you'll be pleased with the enhancements we've made. Your feedback has always been valuable to us, and we're eager to hear your thoughts on the latest features.

My main project, The New Leaf Journal, was blacklisted by Bing in January 2023 and not reinstated until July (I received formal confirmation near the end of August). The process was annoying enough to prompt me to create a GitHub repository (my choice of Microsoft-owned GitHub was intentional) collecting Bing-ban stories. I still do not know why Bing took adverse action against my site (they will never say), but I can report that our standing with Bing and Bing-dependent DuckDuckGo has finally returned to what it was on the eve of the troubles in January. Of course, this Bing email is a misunderstanding for a reason unrelated to my complicated Bing history. I usually use a Google account I set up for Search Console purposes to log into Bing Webmaster. This email was sent to my Bing-only account that has never been used. Bing can rest assured that I am alive and have seen its new Webmaster features.

Importance of Bing Indexing For Alt Search (2022) by SpaceGhost (Blue Dwarf)
https://thenewleafjournal.com/importance-of-bing-indexing-for-alt-search/ I only stumbled accross this article a couple of days ago, despite the fact that it prominently mentions the cheapskatesguide article about being de-indexed by Bing.

Back in 2022, I wrote an article on the importance of being in good standing with Microsoft Bing for reaching searchers who prefer privacy-friendly search solutions. While Bing itself is far from privacy-friendly, many alternatives such as DuckDuckGo, Qwant, Ecosia, and Swisscows use Bing’s search index. That particular article was inspired by a post on Cheapskate’s Guide about being de-indexed by Bing and, as a result, being unavailable to DuckDuckGo searchers. I learned today from my New Leaf Journal Koko Analytics referrer logs that I had received referrals from Blue Dwarf, which is a small independent social network run by the admin of Cheapskate’s Guide. Sure enough, the referrals came from the author of the excellent Cheapskate’s Guide post discovering my article. Very neat. My original article came before The New Leaf Journal itself suffered a Bing blacklisting, but we were restored after just more than half a year and are now doing well with Bing and all of its derivatives. See my GitHub repository on Bing bans.