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Microsoft Bing Beats Yahoo in Search Queries for the First Time in December

January 12, 2012

comScore on Thursday released search engine data from December 2011, with Bing surpassing Yahoo in the number of search queries for the first time.

However, Google sites, of course, continued to reign supreme, gobbling up 65.9 percent of search queries conducted in December, up 0.5 percent from November.

Microsoft's Bing came in second, though not exactly a close second, claiming 15.1 percent of searches in December, a slight increase from the 15 percent it took home the previous month. Yahoo saw a decline from November to December, slippling from 15.1 percent in November to 14.5 percent in December, which allowed Bing to leapfrog Yahoo for the number two spot.

Rounding out the top five were Ask Network and AOL, hanging steady with 2.9 percent and 1.6 percent of search queries respectively.

comScore classifies these searches as "excplicit core searches," which means they "exclude contextually driven searches that do not reflect specific user intent to interact with the search results."

Additionally, comScore noted that more than 18.2 billion "explicit core searches" were conducted last month, a 2 percent increase. Google accounted for 12 billion of those searches (a 3 percent increase), Microsoft sites ate up 2.7 billion searches (a 2 percent increase), and Yahoo comprised 2.6 billion searches. Ask Network saw 531 million searches (up 3 percent), and AOL nabbed 287 million.

In all, 20.5 billion total core searches were conducted in the U.S. in December, a 3 percent bump. Google snagged 13.6 billion of those (up 4 percent), Yahoo had 3.3 billion (up 2 percent), and Microsoft took 2.8 billion (up 2 percent).

Google, however, might be in hot water for its search practices, as a result of its utter dominance of the market. The Internet giant recently began rolling out a new search initiative called "Search plus Your World," which taps into content from its Google+ network to deliver personalized, social results.

Critics are accusing Google of unfairly favoring its own results over those of its competitors, and the update has prompted the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which could invite another probe into Google's practices.




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