Has Google got 97% of the search engine market?
Reading this post on Marketing Pilgrim got me thinking... They're discussing Hitwise's latest figures which claim Google accounts for 64.13% of all search engine traffic, as exemplified by the below chart:
While most people are unlikely to argue with those figures, I'm not most people and I don't believe I've ever had a month that looked remotely like that. True you can argue this and that about the demographics; that Seopher.com attracts techie users who clearly feel the need to use Google etc etc. The truth is I only know one person who doesn't use Google - and that's the girlfriend: who uses Yahoo simply out of habit. So here I want to try and explain using my server logs exactly how I think the search engine market really sits.
Simple statistics from Google Analytics
The below graph shows the very basic stats provided by one of my statistics packages (Google Analytics). This shows simply the traffic organically generated by each search engine and only each search engine. This does not count visitors from Google Images or any regional versions, just Google.com, Yahoo.com, Live, ASK, AOL, Search, MSN and Dogpile. The results can be seen below:
The graph does look awfully cluttered but that's because Google has accounted for 97% of all organic search engine traffic. To put this into context, in 23 days Google sent just under 8,000 visitors to Seopher.com (just through Google.com remember) compared to the 196 Yahoo delivered. So let's now look at the combined stats:
Combined statistics from Google Analytics
This graph combines all the flavours of Google into one entity (and the same with Yahoo). So Google.co.uk is added to Google.com, Google images is added to Google.com etc. This shows truly how many visitors Google sent in my direction in the first 23 days of this month:
Google's claim has risen to 98% in this chart after sending 8,763 visitors compared to Yahoo's 206. To be fair, Live.com sent only 32, AOL 23, MSN 22... You get the picture.
Conclusion of Analytics stats
Google has a 98% market share over Seopher.com according to these statistics and shows no sign of giving up. It has such a heavy lead it's worth questioning whether focusing on other engines is time well spent.
However, it's worth considering that it's Google's tool we're using at the moment, so they may inflate their own statistics. So this part of our journey takes us deep into my server logs...
AWStats uses a different metric, "pages" rather than Analytics' "visits"
Just a note before I start quoting any numbers, the figures provided are not in terms of visits but pages - just so no one gets confused.
21 different search engines, one big fat winner
Well, without drawing the graph I can see already who is the winner (and it's not a close contest) but here is the pie chart anyway:
Well, the massive maroon region is Google and the massive blue region is Google images; combined they attribute 94% of the search engine traffic for Seopher.com. Unknown search engines come in third which is slightly odd, with Yahoo sitting behind that. There's not really much more I can say about that.
So what do your stats indicate? Everywhere seems to quote that Google is 60-65% of the search engine market and I've never experienced anything remotely comparable to that. Google is and always has been 90something percent of the Seopher.com search engine traffic. I believe the same is true for the websites of friends and collegues. So really, I'm waiting for someone to disprove this notion because I need to see it with my own two eyes that Google is less than 90% of the market.
Enjoy this article? Why not subscribe to the full RSS feed?