Ecosia is an alternative search engine for ethically conscious consumers and marketers.
What is Ecosia?
Ecosia is a search engine created in 2009 by entrepreneur Cristian Kroll.
Kroll was inspired to create an ethical search platform after traveling and seeing the global effects of deforestation first-hand. Years later, Ecosia became the first B Corp nominated company in Germany. More recently, Kroll has signed an agreement that ensures that company shares can never be sold for profit.
Ecosia currently has about 15 million users worldwide, and the company has planted upwards of 50 million trees. It also uses 200% solar-powered renewable energy—so every search removes about a kilogram of CO2 from the atmosphere.
In addition to their ecological values, Ecosia is geared toward protecting data privacy, transparency, and accountability. They make browsing data anonymous and only keep it for a week before deleting it entirely. They also post a user-friendly financial report on their site every week so everybody can see exactly how much money is being spent and where.
How it Works
Ecosia works a lot like a standard search engine. It is powered by Bing, the same search engine behind Yahoo. Like other major search engines, it displays ads along the side of the screen and makes money when users click on these ads.
The major difference with Ecosia is what they do with the money they make. After covering company costs, Ecosia invests profits into climate action. It claims to invest 20% of ad profit into renewable energy, regenerative agriculture, and grassroots activism. 80% goes towards planting and protecting trees.
Installing Ecosia web extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari is the easiest way to get started. Just visit the site and click on the link for the extension download. Ecosia mobile is also available on the App Store or Google Play.
Untapped Potential for Marketers?
Ecosia has great potential for marketers wanting to attract more ethically conscious consumers with their PPC campaigns. It tends to draw younger, more highly motivated users than other search engines who are more likely to engage with ethical and sustainable businesses.
Ecosia recently released a unique Green Search feature that helps ethical consumers navigate ads—and make more sustainable choices in terms of where they click. Ads for planet-friendly organisations are marked with a green leaf icon in the corner but those from environmentally destructive companies are marked with a coal icon.
The great thing about the green leaf icon is that it is free, meaning marketers don’t have to pay extra to earn it. Ecosia notes that companies that have been assessed by ecological certification bodies like Economy for the Common Good or earned B Corporation certification are likely to be awarded a green leaf icon that will help drive more eco-conscious traffic.
Advertising on Ecosia
Since Ecosia partners with Bing, you will have to set up a Bing campaign to advertise on the search engine.
Advertising on Bing already has some inherent benefits—including an invitingly low CPC and sophisticated device targeting. Bing claims 34% of desktop search engine market share and gives you access to 63 million users that Google Ads don’t reach. Partnering with an ethical digital marketing agency that understands the importance of targeting the right audience with your ad spend will help you ensure all your best credentials get noticed.
Here at Climbing Trees, our values are based on transparency and accountability, and we are currently earning our own Certified B Corporation status to prove it. We have worked with charities such as Orangutans SOS to help them restructure their ad campaigns, increasing their click rate by 75% and conversions by 85%. We’ve also teamed with companies like Olympus UK to help them increase Bing and Google ad revenues by 80%.