As with recent search stats from Hitwise and Nielsen, comScore’s latest stats for April 2008 search engine share in the United States shows Google hitting a new high, breaking through the 60% mark for the first time with comScore’s measurements.
Searches that happened on the five "core" search engines that comScore tracks stack up as follows:
- Google: 61.6%
- Yahoo: 20.4%
- Microsoft: 9.1%
- AOL: 4.6%
- Ask: 4.3%
The trend over time? Here’s data going back to June 2007 (I don’t have previous months because comScore changed its methodology, and I don’t have adjusted figures prior to that period):
As you can see, Google set a new high for the period. Yahoo and Microsoft continued hitting new lows from their previous lows last month.
How about number of searches versus market share?
- Google: 6.5 billion
- Yahoo: 2.2 billion
- Microsoft: 961 million
- AOL: 491 million
- Ask: 458 million
Sometimes a search engine like Yahoo or Microsoft can drop in share but still be stable in raw number of searches or even see an increase, due to the overall number of searches increasing. Not this month.
As a reminder, my general rules when evaluating popularity stats:
- Avoid drawing conclusions based on month-to-month comparisons. Lots
of things can cause one month’s figures to be incomparable to another month.
It’s better to see the trend across multiple months in a row.
- Avoid drawing conclusions based on one ratings service’s figures.
Each service has a unique methodology used to create popularity estimates.
This means that ratings will rarely be the same between services. However, a
trend that you see reflected across two or more services may give you faith in
trusting that trend.
- Consider Actual Number Of Searches: While share for a particular search engine might drop, the raw number of searches might still be going up (and thus they might be earning more money, despite a share drop). This is because the "pie" of searches keeps growing, so even a smaller slice of the pie might be more than a bigger slice in the past.