One of the best parts about the advent of the internet is that with a world of information at our fingertips, people are starting to utilize technology to raise social consciousness and make a difference.
When we think of utilizing technology to change the world for the better, many of us probably envision signing a petition or developing new ways to manage waste in a manner where it won’t end up in our oceans. But did you know you can do a bit of good every time you do a simple web search? It’s true!
Here are five innovative search engines you can utilize to do a good deed the next time you do an internet search for chic designer duds on the cheap or flavorful winter recipes.
Imagine a mashup of Groupon paired with supporting the greater good. This is the innovative idea behind GoodSearch, an online search engine that allows users to scan discounts on everything from body lotion to laptops to eyeglasses.
GoodSearch offers a vast array of retailers to choose from when you’re in the mood for a little retail therapy but still want to save some cash. Some of the retailers featured include Abercrombie and Fitch, Barnes and Noble, Dell and buybuyBaby. For every penny you spend, GoodSearch donates a percentage to charity. With more than 110,000 retail partners, GoodSearch provides an excellent way to cross people off your holiday gift-giving list while also raising money for important causes.
Billed as the search engine that plants trees, Ecosia does just that! Ecosia acts as an extension to Google Chrome and can be installed with a simple click. Once installed, just search as you usually would using Chrome!
Ecosia has a mission to plant more than a billion trees all around the globe by raising money through advertising revenue. When you click on a paid advertiser’s link, Ecosia receives payment. The search engine makes it simple to help plant trees in areas such as Madagascar, where native vegetation and habitats have suffered extreme deforestation due to the palm oil trade. The best part yet? Ecosia prides itself on transparency and makes its financial reporting available to the public, so you can rest assured that the causes you support are just.
Have you ever thought about how search engines build revenue? It all comes down to advertising dollars. Top companies pay a great deal to have their website appear among the first links a searcher sees in their results. Benelab functions on the same model.
What sets Benelab apart? The fact that 100 percent of their income goes toward charitable causes. Crazy, right? Each month, Benelab sets a charitable goal consisting of anything from feeding hungry families overseas to helping people with medical needs right here at home. Their mission is simple: structure an everyday task that millions use daily in a way that raises money to support their cause of the moment. Benelab’s nonprofit status and commitment to transparency let users see just where the money from their searches is going.
While they still turn a profit, EveryClick is a UK-based search engine where 50 percent of advertising proceeds go to charity. The benefit of signing up for an EveryClick account is being able to choose which charity will receive the proceeds from your clicks! The amount of money your favorite charity receives is based upon how many clicks you make with your search.
EveryClick also allows you to raise additional funds for charity by sharing your links on social media or donating to them directly through their secure site. You can also set up your own charitable fundraiser for a reasonable fee.Searching the internet is something most of us do on a weekly — if not daily — basis. Why not take advantage of the opportunity to support a great cause or two just by doing what you already do? A quick and easy way to make a difference in the world is as simple as switching search engines. Happy browsing!
Elliot for Water is the first social good search engine that empowers its users to help people in need of clean water by allocating its ad revenue to impact projects. One fifth of the global population has no access to clean water, leading to death of six thousand people per day due to water-related diseases. Elliot For Water’s mission is to help bring drinkable water to as many people as possible and to improve the quality of life, while respecting the needs of the local culture and environment.
This is achieved by allowing its users to help people in need around the world simply by surfing the web. Elliot For Water donates 60% of its profits to buy Solwa Technologies, solar energy based products that purify dirty or polluted water through desalination, the irrigation of arid grounds, and the dehydration of food. We will also take care of the primary necessities of the villages in which this technology will be implemented.
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Kate is a journalist from northern Pennsylvania. She writes about everything from health to politics, but especially loves stories about social good. If you like her work, you can visit her personal blog, So Well, So Woman.