No change in trend in the November search share rankings. Google up, everyone else weak. (Go ahead and jump for joy if you want about minor recent improvements in Microsoft and Yahoo year-over-year growth. They’re irrelevant. And they didn’t come at expense of Google).
Unless Microsoft and Yahoo merge their search businesses, lock up long-term distribution deals, and make their combined search window ubiquitous across the Internet, we think Google will continue an inexorable march to 80%-90% share. Search is a natural monopoly, and the only chance the rest of the industry has is to combine forces.
(For Google, meanwhile, the bad news is that it only has another 20 points or so of share to gain–and even less internationally, where its share is even higher.)
JP Morgan’s Imran Khan:
comScore released November 2008 qSearch volume and market share data for the US. We note that DNS error searches, which were excluded in 2007, are also excluded from our 2008 Y/Y growth calculations for comparability purposes. We note that this is only one data point and is not necessarily predictive of 4Q performance. Following are the data highlights:
- According to the data, total US core search volume increased 21.6% Y/Y in November, slightly ahead of 19.5% Y/Y growth in October. The first two months of 4Q have seen 20.5% Y/Y growth, roughly in-line with 3Q’s 20.2% Y/Y search volume growth.
- Google domestic core search market share was 63.5% in November, up from 63.1% in October. Google domestic core search volume growth of 30.9% Y/Y in the first two months of 4Q slightly trails 3Q’s 35.0% Y/Y increase.
- Yahoo! domestic core search market share ticked down to 20.4% in November from 20.5% in October. Yahoo!’s 4Q domestic core search volume growth to date (2 months of data) of 9.5% Y/Y is better than 3Q’s 3.6% Y/Y growth.
- MSN domestic core search market share fell to 8.3% in November from 8.5% in October. MSN domestic core search volume for the first two months of 4Q was up 2.3% Y/Y, ahead of 3Q’s decline of 9.8% Y/Y.
- Ask Network domestic core search market share declined to 4.0% in November from 4.2% in October. Ask Network domestic core search volume was down 1.9% Y/Y in the first two months of 4Q, vs. an 8.9% Y/Y increase in 3Q.
- AOL November domestic core search market share rose slightly to 3.8% from 3.7% in October. AOL domestic core search volume was down 0.9% Y/Y in the first two months of 4Q vs. 8.5% Y/Y growth in 3Q.