Showing posts with label search. Show all posts
Showing posts with label search. Show all posts

15 Jan 2012

Bing Beats Yahoo

Bing is now the second most popular search engine in America. Almost three years after Bing was introduced (Bing went online June 3, 2009 as a substitution for Live Search, Windows Live Search and MSN Search) it has now overtaken Yahoo's position as Google's worst competitor. An analysis by Comscore shows that Google sites led the U.S. explicit core search* market in December with 65.9 percent market share, followed by Microsoft sites with 15.1 per cent and Yahoo sites with 14.5 per cent.

Explicit Core Search* share report total U.S. – home and work locations
Total Explicit Core Search     Nov-11    Dec-11  Change
Google sites 65.4% 65.9% 0.5%
Microsoft sites 15.0%   15.1%   0.1%
Yahoo sites 15.1% 14.5% -0.6%
ASK networks 2.9% 2.9% 0.0%
AOL 1.6% 1.6% 0.0%
Source: Comscore (January 2012)
*Explicit Core Search excludes contextually driven searches that do not reflect specific user intent to interact with the search results.

The analysis shows that from November to December 2011 Yahoo has lost 0.6 per cent of its searches. 0.5 per cent of the searches is now done at Google instead and just 0.1 per cent of the searches is now done on Bing. Unfortunately for Yahoo, this tiny percentage has the result that Bing is now the second most popular search engine in America.

See Press release by Comscore.

3 Jul 2011

Word of Mouth Is Still Best

In the age of the Internet word of mouth is still best way to attract customers. 82 per cent of small businesses say that the customers find them via word of mouth, according to a survey by American Express. Although word of mouth sounds rather analog and old fashioned, it can happen on the web.

On the web there are several possibilities to pursue this. You give the consumers a possibility to share products, articles, pages on Facebook, Twitter, Digg and so on, this is called Social Sharing and has proved successful. You can also focus on Social Commerce or User-Generated Content (UGC). Social Commerce is a way to let people actively participate on online shopping sites. This is most commonly done by letting consumers rate products and pages or submit reviews. These methods might not strictly be word of mouth but this is a way to embrace the concept on the Internet.

Shown below is the other ways the Internet is used to attract customers.

Which of the following online marketing techniques does your business currently utilize?

A company website 86%
Social media (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) 44%
Mass e-mail 35%
Search engine optimization (-SEM) 28%
Search advertising (Google AdWords, etc.) 21%
Display advertising (such as banner ads) 18%
Video (for example, a channel on YouTube) 13%
Blog 12%
Rich local listings such as Google Places 10%
Rich profiles in consumer review sites (such as Yelp)   4%
Pod casts   4%
Other online marketing 17%
Source: American Express (July 2011)

See American Express OPEN Small Business Search Marketing Survey by American Express.

20 Mar 2011

SEO Is Better Than SEM

The hard daily work to get your keywords ranked in search engines like Google and Bing is worth the effort. An eye-tracking study by User Centric reveals that organic search results are far superior to paid ads on search engines.

100% look at the organic result
The research shows that users overlook paid ads but organic search results are viewed 100 per cent of the time and users spend an average of 14.7 seconds on Google and 10.7 seconds on Bing looking at organic search results. The paid ads are dong lousy. Just 28 per cent of the users look at the right-side ads on Google, and just 21 per cent do the same on Bing.

Where users are looking for information           Google   Bing
Organic search result 100%      100%
Ads in the right-side     28%        21%
Ads above organic search result    90%        90%
Source: User Centric (January 2011)

It’s not all bad for SEM (Search Engine Marketing) because about 90 per cent look at the ads above the organic results. So in your online marketing mix you might want to pay a little extra to be on top of the search result that right to the search result.

User Centric was in its research looking in to five areas of interest: sponsored results at the top, sponsored results to the right of the organic search results, organic search results, left pane, and on-hover flyouts (which is only used by Bing).

See press release from User Centric.

13 Mar 2011

Search Phrases Are Getting Shorter

Nearly half (47,52%) of the web searched in the U.S. consist of only one or two words, according to Experian Hitwise which has examined 10 million U.S. web searches in four weeks ending February 26 2011. The longer search queries of five to eight words have become less frequent.

Number of words                January 2011   February 2011         Month over month 
        percentage change
One word 23,39%23,86% 2%
Two words 23,59%23,66% 0%
Three words 19,99%19,91% 0%
Four words    13,71%13,57%-1%
Five words  8,28% 8,15%-2%
Six words  4,62% 4,52%-2%
Seven words  2,58% 2,52%-2%
Eight or more words     3,85% 3,80%-1%
Source: Experian Hitwise (March 2011)

This means that when you are doing your search engine optimization (SEO) you have to make sure your keywords are spot on. Customers are using shorter search phrases, hence, you have to make sure the customer can find you when only searching for one word. Yes, it can be done, but it's not easy.

See press release from Experian Hitwise.

12 Mar 2011

Bing Is Growing - Slowly

Google is still the undisputed king of the search engines. No doubt about that, but Microsoft's Bing seems to be gaining ground. According to Experian Hitwise Bing is the search engine which has improved most from January to February 2011. Experian has examined 10 million U.S. web searches in four weeks ending February 26 2011 and Bing has improved the most while Google is slowly losing ground.

Percent of all U.S. searches among leading search engines                January     2011   February 2011  Month over month percentage change
Google 67,95%66,69%-2%
Bing-powered searches 27,44%28,48% 4%
Yahoo 14,62%14,99% 3%
Bing    12,81%13,49% 5%
Source: Experian Hitwise (March 2011)

More people are using Bing. And Bing seems also successful in providing a useful search result which is basically why people are using search engines in the first place.

Success rate among search engines           January 2011   February 2011
Yahoo 81,38%81,51%
Bing 81,54%81,27%
Google 65,58%65,80%
Source: Experian Hitwise (March 2011)

When people makes a search on Yahoo or Bing more than 81 per cent of the searches result in a visit to a web page. Google achieved a success rate of only 66 per cent. This means that a third of the searches on Google doesn't result in a visit to a web page.

Optimize for Bing
Many e-commerce marketers have just done search engine optimisation (SEO) in order to perform well on Google. The numbers mentioned above mean that we should begin to take Bing seriously. If you do it now it might give you an advantage because you have optimized to Bing before everybody else and accordingly be ranked higher.

See press release from Experian Hitwise.

30 Jan 2011

Google Is Giving Original Content Priority in Search Results

When you make a search you might have experienced that your search result (SERP) is full of pages which apparently have the same content. What you want is most likely the webpage which initially published the information. You click on the website you think might be the right one but instead you get to one of the websites which just scrapes content of other websites and publish it in order to attract traffic. These types of websites are worthless to you and your customers. They are a nuisance. And sometimes there are so many of them that you might never find the information you are looking for.

Earlier this week Google took action
Google is aware of this problem, Matts Cutts, Google's Principal Engineer, said in a blog post 21 January:

"And we’re evaluating multiple changes that should help drive spam levels even lower, including one change that primarily affects sites that copy others’ content and sites with low levels of original content."

Google has now done something about this earlier this week, according to Matt Cutts. Google has improved the search results.

Original content will have priority
A search result is generated through a complex algorithm which we won't go into here. However, Google is able to tweaked this algorithm in order to manipulate the search result. Google has now tweaked this algorithm which should give original content more priority. This will also help companies if their competitor just copy the content. The company which was first to publish the content will have priority.

So you and your customers should be able to get better search results which will make it easier to find the information and products you and your customers are searching for.

See the whole blog post by Matt Cutts.