Search Engine Wars: Are Yahoo & Bing Finally Catching Up to Google?

For the longest time, Google has been the top search engine of choice for browsing anything and everything on the web. Since its substantial growth in the early 2000s, Google has overshadowed the search market, preventing Yahoo and Bing from taking a piece of the pie. However, it looks like Google’s competitors may be catching up.

Google’s Drop in Market Share

According to new reports released this month, Google’s share of the U.S. search market dropped below 75% for the first time since 2008. What could be the cause? In November 2014, Google was replaced by Yahoo as the Mozilla Firefox browser’s default search engine. Between November and January, Google saw its share slide 2.5% with most being taken by Yahoo, which climbed 8.6% to 10.9%, based on data from StatCounter Global Stat.

This isn’t the only challenge Google is facing. The search engine has seen seeing a dip in its paid search revenue year after year, in part due to increased mobile search by users, which Google doesn’t charge advertisers as much compared to desktop clicks.

Yahoo and Bing Partnership

A further blow to Google’s growth is Yahoo’s strange partnership with Bing. Yahoo is powered by Bing’s search algorithm, which has helped Yahoo gain grounds in the last several years. While Bing still significantly falls behind Google in terms of search volume, it earned a share of 19.7% in 2014. Compared to 8% in previous years, it’s a big improvement for Bing. And thanks to a Yahoo/Bing partnership, any gain, whether Yahoo or Bing, is a big victory against Google.

Bing’s Design Makeover

With new self-improvements underway in its algorithms and design, it seems that Bing is pretty serious about catching up with Google. A big advantage Bing has over Google is its paid advertising. Although Google’s ads are easy to set up and manage, Bing is offering more niche advertising options and lower prices thanks to lack of competition on the search engine. While Google is still unquestionably in the lead, Bing’s new design and functionality combined with its attractive ad platform and options could offer more value for not just U.S. users, but users on an international scale. If Bing is serious about improving user experience, the search engine could have a real shot at competing for the title of “King of Search”.

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