Nielsen/NetRatings: Google Continues, Extends Search Lead

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In a study released yesterday, Internet media and market research company Nielsen//NetRatings reported that the total number of searches in the U.S. conducted across approximately 60 search engines grew to nearly 5.1 billion searches in December 2005—up from 3.3 billion the previous year—which was a 55% increase year-over-year.

Leading the search pack is none other than search behemoth Google, which rose nearly six percent reaching a 49 percent share of all searches in December 2005. On the other side of the spectrum, both Yahoo Search and MSN Search dropped slightly from 21.7% to 21.4% and 14.0% to 10.9% respectively. All in all, however, all three search engines experiences double-digit growth year-over-year: Google was up 75% reaching approximately 2.5 billion searches, Yahoo! Search grew 53% to nearly 1.1 billion
searches, and MSN Search was also up 20% to 553 million searches.

“The double-digit increase in online search activity marks a significant milestone in the evolution of Internet consumer behavior,” said Ken Cassar, Nielsen//NetRatings’ senior director of analytics in a statement. “Online search is the primary tool most people rely on to do everyday research.”

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