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Bing enjoys largest growth of search services, research says

By Tim Conneally, Betanews

Market research firm comScore released its U.S. search rankings for June 2010, and though the search business is still soundly dominated by Google, both Microsoft and Yahoo increased their market share where Google actually lost some ground.

According to comScore, Google’s market share for June was 62.6 percent, down from May’s 63.7 percent. Microsoft and Yahoo each increased their search shares from 12.1 to 12.7 percent and 18.3 to 18.9 percent.

The number of searches conducted across all search engines was up 3 percent from May, the data said. Google experienced a 1 percent increase in volume while Yahoo increased by 7 percent and Microsoft increased 8 percent, the largest traffic growth of any of the search services measured by comScore.

Exactly one year ago, comScore’s numbers suggested that Microsoft had not experienced a significant benefit from rebranding its search as Bing after being known as Windows Live for more than three years.

However, Microsoft has strongly pushed its “decision engine” since its launch last year and has seen repeated periods of growth. Six months after launching Bing, Microsoft began to advance the search service on mobile platforms as well with the launch of its fully-featured iPhone app. A similar app is expected to launch on Samsung’s line of Galaxy S Android phones in the coming weeks, and Microsoft will then have a spot in front of the fastest growing mobile audience on devices from the most prolific smartphone maker.

In 2008, Steve Ballmer said turning around Microsoft’s search business was “a five-year task,” and that there could be a 5 to 10 percent loss in total operating income as a result.

Even with a strong focus on brand recognition, mobile presence, and quality search results, Microsoft is not likely to upset market leader Google. But comScore shows progress is absolutely being made.

Copyright Betanews, Inc. 2010

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