Google, Bing continue to gobble up market share

Yahoo slipped in October, but Bing and Google saw their audiences grow, according to a new study by comScore.

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Well, it's not exactly as exciting as a horse race. But watching the search engine scuffle can be entertaining. To wit: Over the past few months, Microsoft's Bing engine has edged it's way up from longshot to genuine contender, attracting at least nine percent of the search audience in the US.

And a new study from market research firm comScore shows that Bing – along with 800-pound gorilla Google – made another successful push in October. According to comScore, Bing's US market share rose from from 9.4 percent in September to to 9.9 percent in October. During that same span, Google climbed from 64.9 percent to 65.4 percent.

The loser on the October leaderboard was Yahoo, which sunk from 18.8 percent in September to 18 percent in October.

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So how does the math stack up? Well, Americans conducted 14.3 billion searches in October, comScore says. (That's a whole lot of searching for Sarah Palin, Snuggies, and so on.) Of that 14.3 billion, 9.4 billion searches were conducted on Google Sites. 2.6 billion searches were keyed into Yahoo sites; Bing got approximately 1.4 searches.

AOL, by comparsion, got only 412 million. How the mighty have fallen.

Bing was first unveiled in late May. At the time, Microsoft said the search tool would be live by June 3, but Bing was pushed online two days early. In early June, Microsoft unveiled a major multimedia advertising campaign, comprised of banner ads, video spots, and interactive displays on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The ads positioned Bing as a “decision engine” – a tool more dynamic and friendly than Google.

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