January has been an interesting month in the search space, while major changes are not going to happen from one month to another, there were some big moves. Microsoft sites, aka Bing, added 1.1 percent points to their market share according to comScore, quite a significant improvement. Google lost almost the same amount.
"Google Sites led the U.S. explicit core search market in January with 65.6 percent market share, followed by Yahoo! Sites with 16.1 percent and Microsoft Sites with 13.1 percent (up 1.1 percentage points)," comScore wrote.
"Ask Network accounted for 3.4 percent of explicit core searches, followed by AOL LLC Network with 1.7 percent," it added.
Bing has been adding market share, little by little, ever since it launched and, though it's a bit of a move forward, perhaps it shouldn't be that unexpected. More interesting, Bing's gain comes at the expense of Google.
With the wave of criticism regarding Google's allegedly spam-filled results and the whole Bing - Google spat, maybe it's all taking a toll on the search giant.
However, market share losses don't always mean net losses. In fact, in the search space, they rarely do. This is the case now, while Google lost a bit of market share, more people searched on Google than ever before.
"Nearly 17 billion explicit core searches were conducted in January. Google Sites ranked first with 11.1 billion searches," comScore explained.
"Yahoo! Sites came in second with 2.7 billion, followed by Microsoft Sites with 2.2 billion (up 13 percent), Ask Network with 576 million and AOL LLC Network with 296 million," it added.
Google saw an 1 percent rise in the number of queries in January, from December, Yahoo 4 percent and Bing a huge 13 percent.
Note that comScore measures Explicit Core Searches, that is, searches initiated willingly by users not those that are done automatically on various pages to serve customized content.