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Search Engine Optimization: Is it worth looking at Bing and Yahoo?

"Google says this", "Google thinks that".. Everybody is talking about Google as if Google was an ancient god, put in Place by Zeus to watch over the all Internet searches. The Palo Alto Internet giant has made it into sevaral of this World's languages: "to google" is an official verb. Even if you use Yahoo for your searches, you are by popular definition still "googling" for results. To many people, Google is like a trusted but feared father figure, gently but forcefully deciding over your business by sending traffic to your website - or not. So I got sidetracked tonight from what I actually wanted to do, which was.. I forgot.. Instead a question popped up in my head. The answer may not come as a surprise to anybody, including myself, but I longed for re-affirmation anyway:

How much does Google dominate the search engine market?

Okay, the easiest way for me to get some first-hand, unscientific data was to look at the Google Analytics accounts that we have to manage our websites. I just checked the average percentage of "market share" that each of the the three big search engines brings to the table by ways of sending visitors from their search results pages to our websites:

According to Google Analytics, it looks like this:

  • 85%
  • 7%
  • 6% Bing
  • 2% others

Well, while I certainly can't ignore 13% of website users that used either Yahoo or Bing over Google to come to our websites, it also certainly proves that Google still is the big fish in the pond, give or take a few percentages here and there.

Okay, now I have to say this: Look at the huge and expensive International advertizing campaign that Bing's owner Microsoft has just put out, kind of implying that Bing somehow looks eye to eye with Google. Their slogans: "Bing it on" and "Have you been Scroogled?" Well, they are fighting for market share, and the fight is brutal but it is not equal:

In my books, Google is still the market leader by a huge margin. While more competition would be good for website owners and visitors alike, it seems that we are still stuck with Google's dominance for a good while to come. Bing it on!