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January 16, 2009

Google & Yahoo See Search Gains, Live Search Falters

Nielsen Online just released its search engine share rankings for December 2008 and the big winner (surprise, surprise) was Google with a search market share of close to 63% and a year over year gain of more than 33%. Yahoo despite its recent troubles didn’t fare too badly either with a year over year growth of close to 14%. In fact, web search over all continued to grow with a jump of 19.6%.

Looking at the published stats virtually every major search player made gains, including Ask, AOL and less well known players like Comcast and AT&T. Microsoft Live Search on the other hand showed a year over year drop of 15.5%. Steve Ballmer may be playing hardball with Yahoo regarding a possible purchase of Yahoo Search, but with stats like those just published, Yahoo might be in a better negotiating position than Microsoft.

Like most deals, it’s all in the timing. Microsoft’s window of opportunity in the web search arena could be closing and 2009 could be the year Google buries its search competitors once and for all.

To see all the stats, go to: