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Comscore: Google's February Search Share Down Globally

7:16 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Google Inc's share of the global Web search market dipped in February from January, despite a rise in its U.S. search share, an Internet industry analyst said on Wednesday, citing comScore data.

The data, released to paying subscribers Tuesday night but not yet made public, show Google's dominance of the worldwide market for Web search dipping slightly to 62.8 percent in February from 63.1 percent in January, said the analyst, who declined to be named, though Google gained share in the U.S. market.

Comscore: Google's February Search Share Down Globally [reuters.com]

7:23 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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The article states that it's U.S. share gained market share while it dropped in other countries abroad. The market here in the U.S. seems to be slowing though. Not good short term news, in conjunction with the revised ad spending forecasts, for stock holders.
8:08 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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The overall volume of searches done through Google dropped in February to 5.86 billion from 6.14 billion, according to the data. The overall worldwide volume of searches also dipped.

There's 2 less days in Feb than Jan. Gosh, I wonder why total monthly searches were down. Journalists love a sensationalist story about Google, and Comscore definitely loves the free PR they get when these stories run.

They quoted some analyst from Jeffries basically saying that a 5% decline is worrying and that overall web-search growth is slowing. When you get a 7% decline in days in a month, that's likely to happen.

A decline of .3 worldwide search share doesn't even seem statistically significant.

I did get a D in stats in college, so my guesstimations may be off...

8:16 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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The article seems to be saying that Google's share of the search market is dropping but at the same time the search market is reducing at the time.

First, the decrease is very, very small. Second, of course Google's share is dropping. The Rusian and Chinese search markets are exploding and not suprisingly, these markets are dominated by local search engines at the moment. These countries have different aplhabets, different cultures and in some cases govenments which control who is a competitor in the search market.

The Russian and Chinese search engines at the moment resemble those of the US and UK in their infancy. Dominated by local search engines that have yet to cotton on to the fact that the internet is global. My guess is that many of these local search engines will fall by the wayside in a couple of years and the market will be domibnated by Google. It's not good in some ways, diversity is good. But economic might will win in the end.

11:13 pm on Mar 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Youngsters @googleplex tolerating Spam 2.0 techniques finally starting to reflect on searchers?

Spam 2.0 techniques, to name a few:

kwd boosters aka "tag clouds"

shallow content created from stolen by 14 yr olds and mass socially bookmarked by likeminds

ontopic content like above, you need to read through 5 pages to realise that the site doesn't offer what you've searched for. By this time (lots of ajax and video help too) it's easier to start new search than push browser's back, thus bounce rate is none

/stop me :)

1:53 am on Mar 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Wish I could remember the link, but I read a quite recent analyses of why Comscore and Nielsen NetRatings are, essentially, educated guesses at best.

That being said, I can see search traffic eventually reaching a plateau and then declining, based on observing my own habits and the habits of others.

The more time someone spends online, the better they are at internalising their own list of "trusted sources" for certain types of information. Bookmark lists grow, and I'm amazed at how many URLs I've managed to memorize, as well as the number of URLs even the non-computer savvy memorize over time.

Searching becomes more of a specific, targeted event, done more clearly and accurately. Newer surfers and the not-yet savvy have to do multiple searches to get the one page they want. More seasoned surfers know exactly what to type in to the search box to get the page they want on the first try. (This is a case of people "learning" engine behaviour rather than the other way around) This can vastly increase search efficiency, and greatly reduces the amount of traffic an engine gets.

Worldwide, SE growth should continue for the next ten to twenty years (I'm guessing), judging by overall increasing net traffic and continued "new blood" moving online. More and more, that growth is going to come from overseas. The North Amercican and European markets are already starting to mature.

3:17 am on Mar 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

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This is becoming comical.... at the expense of billions of dollars worth of Google stock.

Glad I sold mine...

1:47 pm on Mar 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

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And should we be really wasting our time discussing a statistically meaningless 0.3% difference?
10:15 pm on Mar 20, 2008 (gmt 0)

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How reliable is comScore data ? Any pointers on how they collect this data ?


12:20 am on Mar 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I believe (as in, don't quote me on this) both Comscore and Neilson Netratings use a composite of data they collect/purchase from various stats counter services, blended with old fashioned telephone surveys.

Their data is not particularly accurate at all.

The only people who really know how much traffic Google gets are people within Google itself.