The Problem with Presearch's New Earning Rate
I have been using Presearch for a few years. While it may not be the best search engine of the bunch, I stuck with it because I liked its mission to decentralize searches. As a bonus, it offered a variety of ways to earn PRE whether via searches, running nodes, keyword staking, and most recently search staking. Speaking of the latter, you can stake your tokens to earn more PRE for every search you make. Sounds good, right?
There is a big catch as Presearch reduced the reward rate from 0.1 PRE to 0.01 PRE. With a maximum of 25 reward-able searches per day, you can earn up to a quarter token daily. Testing it out myself, I staked around 1,500 PRE on my account and the reward rate boosted to 0.03 PRE per search, effectively raising my daily earning potential to 0.75 PRE. This is still a far cry from the 2.5 tokens I used to earn daily (and if you remember the good ol' days where you could earn 0.25 PRE per search, you could earn up to 8.5 PRE daily at 30 max reward-able searches).
Another issue is with referrals. While the earning rate has changed, the conditions for the referral bonus have not. It is still the same "referral needs to earn 50 PRE and be active for 30 days to gain the 25 PRE bonus". When the reward rate used to be 0.1 PRE per search, one could earn the 50 tokens in 20 days. But now, with the rate cut by a tenth, it will take the referral 200 days to earn the same amount. This may pose a problem as the referral program may no longer be an effective way to bring new users. Many of them may not have the patience to stick with Presearch to get that bonus and that may put a damper on existing users who are hoping to, for instance, earn enough tokens to get node rewards.
The world will not stay still for Presearch as there are numerous other alternatives making progress of their own. Brave Search, especially, has improved in its search results. On top of that, its basic search, image search, and video search are now independent. Not to mention, the brand recognition courtesy of the browser helps quite a bit, too.
Does this mean Presearch is going to be in trouble? Hardly. There are plenty of people who are willing to support the engine and its decentralization efforts on principle (referral link for those still interested). That being said, it would not hurt for Presearch to tweak the rewards system a bit to make it more welcoming to newcomers. Perhaps bring the reward rate to 0.05 PRE per search as a nice middle ground?