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Google, Bing market share creeps up

ComScore figures from September repeat the usual theme: Google and Bing nabbing a slightly larger bit of core searches, while Yahoo's share dips.

Google and Microsoft's Bing continue to pick up snippets of the U.S. search engine market at the expense of Yahoo, according to the latest stats from ComScore.

For September, Google's share of the 16 billion "explicit core" searches inched up 0.7 point from August and accounted for 66.1 percent of the market, while Microsoft eked out a 0.1 point rise to grab 11.2 percent. Although Yahoo remains in second place with a 16.7 percent slice of the market, it shed 0.7 point in the month.


Looking at sheer numbers, Google captured 10.6 billion such searches in the U.S. last month, a 3 percent gain from August. Yahoo accounted for 2.7 billion, a decline of 2 percent. Microsoft represented 1.8 billion, a rise of 3 percent.

ComScore's numbers, released yesterday, take into account all of a company's search properties. So, for example, Google's results include searches on its main page, YouTube, Google News, Google Images, and other pages.

The stats specifically examine "explicit core" searches, or search terms manually entered on a Web page. In August, ComScore refined its tracking methods to counteract attempts by Microsoft and Yahoo to treat slideshows as searchable items.

The September report includes a couple of other changes as well. For its latest results, ComScore addressed Google's Instant Search feature launched early last month. Despite the potential for Instant Search to skew statistics, ComScore said it has been able to account for the difference between a user simply viewing the Instant Search results and actively clicking on a search result.

ComScore is also now looking at the latest "powered by" searches in which Bing's share in this specific area includes searches at its own site as well as those as Yahoo's Web, Image, and Video search pages--a result of the search deal between the two companies. But Google has also gotten into the act by powering certain searches conducted at AOL and Ask's MyWebSearch.

Looking at these types of results separately, ComScore reported that 69.1 percent of searches in the U.S. for September were powered by organic (nonpaid) search results from Google, while 23.5 percent were powered organically by Bing.