Bing’s Growth Versus Google Dominance (MSFT, YHOO, GOOG, IACI)

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Everyone has been trying to figure out how much Bing from Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) has been able to take in search market share from Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO) and Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG).  Google remains unchallenged as the search default for the public, according to the latest data from Hitwise.  Bing is still growing, but so far it is likely have little to no impact on the earnings for at least this quarter of Google or Yahoo!.  At least that is the case if Hitwise’s US search numbers hold true from its 10 million internet users measured.  All three companies will report earnings in the next two weeks.

Hitwise announced today that Google had a market share of 74.04% of all U.S. searches conducted in the four weeks ending June 27, 2009.  Yahoo! Search had 16.19%, Bing had 5.25% and Ask.com, from IAC/Interactive (NASDAQ: IACI) had 3.15%. The remaining 48 search engines in the Hitwise Search Engine Analysis Tool accounted for 1.36% of U.S. searches.  Here is the table below:

June 2009 vs. May 2009 (vs. June 2008)
Google  74.04% vs. 73.66% (vs. 69.17%)
Yahoo!  16.19% vs 15.55% (vs. 19.62%)
Bing   5.25% vs. 5.64% (vs. 5.46%)
ASK   3.15% vs. 3.81% (vs 4.05%)

Looking at the weekly percentage of U.S. searches for Bing, the search engine has grown at an average weekly rate of 25% for the month of June 2009. Adding in Live.com and MSN Search along with Bing, the combined search engines have grown at an average of 16%. Bing also grew faster than the three other prominent search engines for the month.   These were represented as 6/6 of 3.43%, 6/13 of 4.57%, 6/20 of 5.35%, and 6/27 of 6.63%.

The problem so far is that Google is the greatest source of traffic to key U.S. industries.  Google also now commands nearly three-quarters of the search share.  This obviously leaves any new challenger a massive market to take away.  So far, that just hasn’t happened.

JON C. OGG
July 9, 2009

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