Really fast. Most of our search queries take from 1ms to 20ms to be processed. That's up to 200 times faster than our competitors.
At the beginning of the company, Algolia was an offline Search Engine for mobile phones. Therefore the challenge was to build something optimized for performance given the very limited amount of computing resources that smartphones had at the time.
When we switched to a SaaS offer, we had an unfair advantage: none of our competitors had ever faced so many challenges related to performance.
To overcome the “offline mobile” issue, we had to “over optimize” our index ranking. For example, most of the scoring is computed when objects are indexed, instead of computing when there is a search. That makes the search operations much faster.
Speed is part of our DNA, we’re crazy about optimizing every millisecond, and we build our product around that, from how the engine works, to our infrastructure. We are the only search provider to propose a Distributed Search Network (DSN) with 14th worldwide locations.
DSN enables you to automatically duplicate your search engine and your data in multiple locations around the world (this is a complete copy of the search engine with all data, not just a cache). This way, when one of your users searches for something, the query will be sent to the closest datacenter, which will greatly reduce the latency.