What is Kelkoo.com?Kelkoo is a comparison shopping search engine based in Europe, for Europe, and owned by Yahoo. According to the company's website, "within 2 years of launching, Kelkoo became Europe's largest e-commerce website after Amazon and Ebay and the largest e-commerce advertising platform both in the UK and Europe. In April 2004 Kelkoo was acquired by Yahoo! Inc and is now a wholly owned subsidiary. Kelkoo is a one-stop shopping service, which helps shoppers to find, research and buy products online with confidence."
It's worth repeating that Kelkoo is not someplace you buy something from, per se. They are merely pointing you to the best deal; hence their label "comparison shopping search engine." Think of Kelkoo as your own personal shopper.
Kelkoo Home PageRight away, the thing that I appreciated most about Kelkoo was that it's easy on the eyes. No cluttered interface, no rapidly moving things distracting me or popping out at me, and no contrasting seizure-inducing layouts. All your categories are laid out in text form right in front of you, and Popular Products are positioned right under that.
Searching is easy. Just input your query into the search box and you're instantly directed to your search results, with images of the results on the far left, prices on the right. There's a drop down menu that allows you to narrow your selections by category, for instance, I searched for Harry Potter and got a ton of results; I was able to find what I was really looking for when I chose Gadgets and Toys. This option is not perfect; some of the results that came back weren't related to Harry Potter - in Baby Accessories I got a bear whose name is Harry but has nothing to do with The Chosen One. Still, the system is clean and easy to use and that always gets my vote.
Search Options with KelkooYou have a couple of different ways you can use Kelkoo to search for products: Product Search and Category Search. To use Product Search, you just type in whatever you're looking for into the search box - this is both the easiest and fastest way to search Kelkoo, however, it's not the way to narrow down your searches from the get-go. In my earlier Harry Potter search, for example, I got a ton of Harry Potter products, but if I had been looking specifically for say a Harry Potter crocheted afghan, I would have had a bit of combing through results ahead of me.
The Category Search is therefore the way to go if you really want to find what you're looking for in a hurry. You can narrow it by brand, keyword, and the maximum price you're willing to go up to. The Category Search option probably would work best for people who already have a good idea of what they're looking for, but want to find price comparisons so they can compare and purchase quickly.
Kelkoo ToolbarIf you really like Kelkoo and would like to have it readily available at all times, then you might want to check out the Kelkoo Toolbar. Basically, it's a small search form that fits into the top of your browser, allowing you to shop at Kelkoo any darn time you feel like it. The toolbar is compatible with Internet Explorer only at this time; I'm assuming that Kelkoo will soon have a version out for Firefox and other browsers soon.
Why Should I Use Kelkoo?Bottom line - it's easy to use, delivers pretty good results, and there's not a lot of junk clogging up the interface. Plus, this from the company's corporate info:
"Kelkoo was nominated by Nielsen/Netratings one of the 10 most influential websites of the decade(4), and received praise by the BBC Online for "paving the way for online shopping". In October 2004 Nielsen NetRatings and BBC described Kelkoo as "the dominant shopping guide" in the UK. At the same time, Hitwise announced that Kelkoo was the number 1 UK website, based on visits to the Shopping & Classifieds - Rewards and Directories category."
Note: Search engines change frequently, so the information in this article can and will get outdated as more information or features about Kelkoo are released. Be sure to check About Web Search for more updates as they become available.