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SES: Cruising The Search Landscape

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Session talkers at SES San Jose 2007 bounded around the topic of the search landscape: what’s popular, and who’s the most used among the major players in search.

(Our on-scene WebProNews staff has passed along this latest news from SES San Jose 2007. If you can’t be there, you need to be here with WebProNews this week, for videos and reports.)

Bill Tancer of Hitwise loves data. They love it so much at Hitwise that the ILoveData.com domain leads straight to their analysts’ blogs.

Among the big search engines, Tancer said Google continues to grow market share. The search leader has been ticking along at a 24.3 percent clip. Yahoo’s fortunes have improved, with traffic rising since April 2007.

At Microsoft, it’s a tale of two brands. The Live.com brand has been picking up a little market share, while the MSN Search name is in a small decline.

Tancer provided a look at just how dominant the top three search sites are over the competition. Out of some 1,600 search engines they track, Hitwise found 80 percent of search goes through the top three: Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft.

James Lamberti of comScore Networks had an out of left field suggestion for which site could be the fourth-biggest, if it were measured as a search engine. MySpace has reached a point where it would nudge aside Ask and AOL, both of which round out the top five search engines.

Jon Stewart of Nielsen//NetRatings looked at how search market share has become distributed in the US. Google has over half, at 53 percent, while Yahoo gets 20 percent of searches made. Microsoft follows at 14 percent.

He also provided a cautionary suggestions to online retailers. Pushing the conversion too hard, either immediately on arriving or shortly before a purchase, puts a conversion at risk. There should be some time spent on building the brand, with quality content and other efforts, as an investment in retaining a customer.

SES: Cruising The Search Landscape
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