No one likes a one horse race. So with that in mind I’m pleased to report that in April, according to Compete data, Yahoo! (YHOO) search share increased a little over half a point as a result of 5% month-over-month gain in total US consumer query volume. Unfortunately Yahoo! has a long way to go to get back to year ago levels of market share.
Of course Google (GOOG) didn’t exactly sit still. For the first time, Google crossed over the 66% mark with US online consumers using Google for nearly two-thirds of their web search queries. Month-over-month, Google’s query volume increased about 4%, slightly lagging the gains of Yahoo! Hey it’s hard to be the biggest and the fastest every time.
Among the other guys at the top of the heap, Ask held relatively steady and MSN/Live (MSFT) and AOL (TWX) dipped lower. MSN/Live and AOL dipped to their lowest market share levels in a over a year. With AOL dropping into the 1ppt range it may be time to start thinking about pulling some other engines into our “top engines” group.
So, going back to my math roots again … if Yahoo! continues to grow at 5% every month and Google continues to grow at 4% every month, how long would it take Yahoo! to overtake Google? About 8 years. Of course this scenario will require consumers to submit nearly a half a trillion queries a month. That’s over roughly 40 queries a day for every man, woman, and child in US … just about the same number of monthly queries we pose right now. If it’s that hard to find stuff on the web in 8 years … we really screwed up.
* Search market share includes web search only and is calculated based on unique queries within each session during the given month.
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