Hitwise: Google’s Lead Growing, Searches Getting Longer

Google’s share of the U.S. search market continues to grow according to Hitwise data released today. (PDF download)

Google’s market share rose from 72.11% in February to 72.39% in March, while both Yahoo and Live Search saw declines. Year-over-year numbers are also in Google’s favor: It’s up 8% over March 2008, while Yahoo and Live Search are down 19% and 17%, respectively.

hitwise chart

For what it’s worth, Ask.com shows an 8% increase between February and March.

Meanwhile, search queries continue to get longer. As we reported a couple months ago with data for January, searches of four words and up are on the rise, while 1- to 3-word searches are declining.

Hitwise says that trend has continued in February and March, and compared to March 2008, 7- and 8-word queries both saw double digit percent increases.

hitwise chart

It’ll be interesting to see if Google’s recent rollout of local results on non-local queries will impact this trend. The change affects shorter queries the most, and many searchers are now likely to find what they want with short queries like “florists,” “restaurants,” and “lawyers.”

Related Topics: Channel: Strategy | Google: Web Search | Microsoft: Bing | Stats: Hitwise | Stats: Popularity | Stats: Search Behavior | Yahoo: Search

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About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Search Engine Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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  • http://blog.chadweaver.com cweave

    The recent bounce in number for Ask.com is something I’ve noted on my blog. Their partnership with NASCAR, combined with their tuned NASCAR results seems to be affecting their traffic (the sponsorship begin in January) even more so than searches…

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