Ask Grows Share of U.S. Searches in March

Search engine Ask.com grew its number of U.S. searches by 21 percent in March, month-over-month, according to data from Experian Hitwise.

Despite sitting firmly in fourth position, the Ask’s share of searches jumped from 2.84 percent in February to March 2010. However, the engine has also demonstrated slow but consistent growth since October 2009, during which it accounted for just 2.62 percent of searches.

Month-over-month, Yahoo also showed growth of 3 percent, compared with Google and Bing which lost a percentage point each in the same period.

Despite its continued dominance of the market, Google’s share has dropped almost two percentage points since October, and now accounts for under 70 percent of U.S. searches. Meanwhile, Yahoo continued to lose its share of searches since October, while Bing’s has remained fairly flat.

Google accounted for almost 72 percent of all U.S. searches conducted during the four weeks ending November 28, 2009, according to data from Experian Hitwise.

The search giant grew its overall share of searches by one percentage point in that period, while its closest competitors in the space — Yahoo and Microsoft’s Bing — both experienced a decline, dropping 5 percent and 2 percent respectively.

Ranked fourth, Ask.com also experienced month-over-month growth of 1 percent — albeit from a drastically lower base — growing from 2.62 percent in October to 2.65 percent in November.

The remaining 52 search engines monitored by Hitwise accounted for the remaining 1.07 percent of searches.

Share of U.S. Searches Among Leading Providers, March 2010
Share of Searches (%)
Domain February 2010 March 2010 Month-over-Month Change (%)
www.google.com 70.95 69.97 -1
search.yahoo.com 14.57 15.04 3
www.bing.com 9.70 9.62 -1
www.ask.com 2.84 3.44 21
Note: Data is based on four-week rolling periods (ending Feb. 27, 2010, and March 27, 2010) from the Hitwise sample of 10 million U.S. Internet users. Figures are for Web searches only.
Source: Experian Hitwise 2010

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