The search engine and web browser company known as “Cliqz” has stated that it is no more. As Gene Wilder’s Willy Wonka character said sarcastically, “Stop. Don’t. Come Back.” That would best describe my feelings during my brief time using Cliqz.
Cliqz was originally a search engine that marketed itself as being private and “the search engine that Europe needs.” It eventually went on to develop a web browser based on a Firefox core, something I applauded them for instead of taking the easy route and going with Chromium.
While there may have been some decent technology and features inside the browser, which I reviewed at the beginning of 2020, most people would never have noticed because of the biggest problem I saw with this company: that horrible name.
Nothing about the brand, spelling, or sound of “Cliqz” sounds professional or trustworthy. Maybe I’m in the minority, but just looking at the company name reminded me of shady companies or weird software like BonziBuddy.
The name of a company or a product is critical, and if your first hurdle is trying to get over your shoot-your-self-in-the-foot name, it’s a higher mountain to climb than necessary. I think Brave is doing quite well in regards to the name it chose for its company and browser. It’s simple, people can pronounce it, and the brand can appear to be trustworthy or not trustworthy depending on the efforts of your product and marketing.
To close, Cliqz states that the reason they are shutting down their search engine and discontinuing their browser is due to covid-19. I’m sure that is a factor, but blaming the failure of your entire company solely on the coronavirus seems like a stretch. Cliqz had problems long before that.