China’s Search Market Grew In Fourth Quarter

    January 21, 2009

The past year wasn’t a bad one for the Chinese search market.  A new report from Analysys International points to impressive growth in overall revenues, and the top two players both managed to increase their presence and popularity.

Baidu Logo

Let’s start with what could have been good for everyone.  Analysys found that search engines in China took in 1.53 billion yuan (or $223 million) during the fourth quarter of 2008, which represents an increase of 4.2 percent compared to the previous quarter and a year-over-year rise of 61.2 percent.  Recession or no, then, there’s plenty of money still being put into the field.

Or plenty of money for some search companies, anyway.  Baidu, China’s far-and-away search leader, saw its market share increase from 59.3 percent in 2007 to 62.2 percent.  Google, meanwhile, managed to pull off an increase at the same time, moving from 23.4 percent to 27.8 percent.

It was Yahoo that suffered as a result.  A not-impressive 2007 market share of 11.0 percent was almost halved, with Analysys putting the 2008 figure at 5.8 percent.  The corporation can’t seem to catch a break on either side of the Pacific.

Ah, well.  We’ll see how 2009 goes, perhaps catching some early clues as all of these companies give their own take on 2008’s fourth quarter over the next few weeks.