This article offers an updated list of the Russian and Ukrainian search sites to webmasters and website owners who seek to expand internationally. To read General Information on RuNet and UaNet, please go to http://www.azurel10n.com/ar_runet1.htm
Russian Search Engines and Directories
Founded in 1997 as a search engine and directory, the site currently provides some additional search and indexing services via Yandex projects such as zakladki.ru, narod.ru, smart system for choosing goods, link popularity check, etc. Yandex indexes the Russian portion of the Internet, Russia-related resources and some Cyrillic Web resources in languages of ex-Soviet republics, Ukrainian in particular. The search engine reads meta tags and considers keyword density and link popularity in its ranking algorithm. The Yandex directory still accepts sites without payment, but the free inclusion procedure may take months and provides no guarantee for placement. To be listed in the directory within three working days, commercial and non-commercial sites must pay US$249 and $49 respectively, plus VAT. Generally speaking, Yandex looks like Yahoo when it comes to the controversial idea of charging for listing in a directory, while a free-inclusion search engine drives primary search results on the site. In addition to HTML-formatted content, the Yandex search engine indexes PDF, RTF and dynamically generated pages. By mid-September 2003, Yandex had indexed about 110 million pages with unique content.
The site is a search engine combined with two directory-based rating systems: Rambler’s Top100 and Rambler’s TopShop. Since its foundation in 1996, the search engine has been indexing the Russian Web segment and the content with domains of other post-Soviet countries. Rambler ignores meta tags. Being listed in the Top100 directory is very beneficial to a site, because the Rambler search engine reviews the listed URLs daily, while other sites are visited every two weeks at most, except news sites that are spidered five times a day. Rambler offers free inclusion service. The search engine conducts over 1.1 million searches a day.
Search engine and directory. Aport indexes the Russian Web segment and the content with domains of other post-Soviet countries. The ranking algorithm considers meta tags, alt and title tags, keyword density, inbound links, commentaries and some other factors. The search engine indexes dynamic pages. The integrated directory is based on @Rus, once an independent search site. Both search engine and directory offer free inclusion. Aport operates as a constituent part of a Rol.ru portal that, in addition to its search options, offers services nationwide as an ISP and provides access to news (Rol.ru/news), sample essays (Referat.ru), entertainment pages (OMEN.Ru) and online games (Absolute games).
Google.com.ru – Not Google.Ru!
Despite Google still lags behind the above search engines in Runet / Uanet search traffic, it becomes increasingly popular with the local searchers. Some opinion polls state that Google still accounts for three to nine percent of Runet search traffic, but many webmasters and analysts believe that its share in total searches on the Russian search sites is 10 percent at the very least. Google applies its general indexing rules to any Web content in Russian or related to Russia, whether or not a domain name is specific to Runet. This is a big advantage over its Russian competitors that are not so friendly to the websites with domain names like “yoursite.com”, “yoursite.org”, etc. and require them email their applications for inclusion. However, there seems little chance of Google taking the lead in Russia and Ukraine unless it improves its search algorithm in terms of the Russian and Ukrainian language morphology (flexions, synonyms, etc.). The drawback to morpheme search also means that web copy in Russian or Ukrainian should be crafted specifically for Google.