Back To School Season Benefits Search Engines

    October 10, 2007

Pencil . . . check.  Paper . . . check.  Access to your search engine of choice . . . check.  Well, maybe schools aren’t putting Google on their supply lists, but the back to school season has turned out well for all the major search companies.

Of course, in terms of market share, there’s only so much to go around; Google’s and Ask’s pieces of the pie got bigger, while Yahoo and MSN/Live weren’t so lucky.  There were more searches made, however, and so this is the way in which every engine benefited.

“September 2007 turned out to be a record month for search,” reports Compete’s Jeremy Crane.  “Overall search volume in the US reached the highest level with nearly 7.8 billion search queries.”

Yahoo had a 0.4 percent month-over-month increase, which could be better, but the Sunnyvale-based company is in no position to complain.  MSN/Live experienced a 1.9 increase, and one has to wonder if the company expected more following its Live Search update.

The real leaps were made by Google and Ask.  The volume of searches performed through Google rose by 5.0 percent between August and September, and this corresponded to 249 million more queries.  Ask experienced an even bigger percentage increase (21.4 percent), so it deserves some applause, too.  (Actual query volume increased by just 49 million queries, hence the qualifier “some.”)

So what can we conclude?  This wouldn’t be a shocking revelation, but it looks like Google is popular with young people; so, perhaps, is Ask.  And even if the search data doesn’t illustrate this point, we know it’s true: Crane adds, “Children still mourn the arrival of September every year.”