Search Engines and Market Share
As the market for anything as global as search engines is vast, it is never an easy thing to get good statistics on market share. In many cases, moreover, the use of search engines is bundled with the kind of browser you are using. Chrome is Google. Internet Explorer is Bing. Safari used to be Google but it is now a choice among Google, Bing, Yahoo, and DuckDuckGo.
Moreover, market share varies dramatically from region to region. In the US, Bing is estimated to have a market share of 33% while globally it is only 9% 2. In China, where Google and its various products are banned by the government, Google’s official share is zero while Baidu reigns supreme with 76% of the Middle Kingdom using it. This makes Baidu second only to Google on world rankings.
Even if it is difficult to be precise about search engine market share, the larger patterns are quite clear. The top dogs on the market today on a world scale are Google, Baidu, Bing, and Yahoo!. In Figure 1, above, the spread between Google and Baidu is a whopping 64.03% and after Yahoo! the rest already begin to dip below 1%.
What this means, in terms of search engines, is that Google is the clear leader on the market for the moment. As a result, any development that you may be working on in search engine optimization must absolutely use Google as a baseline.
This having been said, most search engines operate according to similar principles. As we will see in Chapter Two, no matter which search engine is being used, it is important to at least take the top four into consideration. As to the rest of the many smaller search engines, patterns from the big four come into play.