Evaluating Google queries based on language preferences

Ahmed F. Al-Eroud, Mohammad A. Al-Ramahi, Mohammed N. Al-Kabi, Izzat M. Alsmadi, Emad M. Al-Shawakfa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


This paper evaluates the assumption that users expect search engines to retrieve the same results for queries regardless of the language or the location of the originator. The dependency of the Google search engine on the language and location from which the query is submitted has been evaluated. The most popular queries in Arabic language were selected and translated into English for comparison using the Google translator. When studying keyword traffic on both Google search based keyword tool and Google Insights for Search, results showed that 67% of the Arab Internet users prefer to use English queries instead of their Arabic counterpart. When studying Google responses to some popular queries we have found that Google ranking algorithm depends on the language of the query more than on the keyword popularity. Although results justify search engines' favouritism of giving documents in English priority over those of other languages, nonetheless, future search engine indexers should separate the document language from its content in a structure that makes the language a pluggable attribute for those indexed documents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)282-292
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Information Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Cross-Lingual Information Retrieval (CLIR)
  • information retrieval
  • page ranking
  • query processing and indexing
  • search engines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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