Bing passes Yahoo, now a distant second behind Google

Microsoft Bing logoMicrosoft's Bing has passed Yahoo to become the number two search engine in the US, according to the latest data from The Nielsen Company. In August, Bing grew from 13.6 percent to 13.9 percent of the US search market while Yahoo shrunk from 14.3 percent to 13.1 percent. Meanwhile, Google's share was up from 64.2 percent in July to 65.0 percent. Combined, Bing and Yahoo had a search share of 27.0 percent, still less than half of Google's.

Although this is definitely a milestone that Microsoft should be proud of, it's not as significant as some may think. After all, last month Microsoft and Yahoo jointly announced that Yahoo was being powered by Bing in the US and Canada. As such, Bing technically grabbed second place at some point in August thanks to the merger.

More important to Bing's success is Google's trend, and not Yahoo's. As you can see in the chart above, Bing really started to steadily gain share in the last six months, and since October it has easily seen the most change: a gain of more than three percentage points. In that timeframe, Google has lost over a percentage point and Yahoo has lost over two.

Nielsen says its search data only counts "genuine intentional searches" that users type into a search box, and does not include contextual searches that are automatically generated by search engines based on browsing behavior. Other US search-measuring groups, including comScore, Experian Hitwise, and StatCounter, still show Yahoo in second place and Bing in third.

Tags: Bing, Microsoft, Yahoo

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