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ComScore: Yahoo grabs 1.6% U.S. search share from Google following Mozilla Firefox deal

ComScore: Yahoo grabs 1.6% U.S. search share from Google following Mozilla Firefox deal

comScore today released its U.S. desktop search share report for December 2014. Unlikely most previous reports, there is a big difference worth noting: Yahoo has stolen 1.6 percentage points from Google.

As you can see in the chart below, Google lost 1.6 points to 65.4 percent while Yahoo jumped that amount to 11.8 percent. All other search sites remained largely flat:



If you haven’t been following search market share numbers in the U.S., one-and-a-half percent may not seem like a significant change. For months now, however, comScore’s reports show next to no movement for each search site. We’re talking a movement of 0.1 points or 0.2 points one way or the other, if that.

More than 1 percent is thus a huge difference, though it’s really no surprise given the five-year deal Yahoo struck with Mozilla on November 19 to become the default search engine in the U.S. Given that Google was the default search engine of choice, it also follows that all the search share Yahoo gained, Google lost.

The deal technically only went into effect on December 1, however, when Firefox 34 was released with Yahoo as the default search engine in North America (a swell as Yandex as the default for Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan). As such, we may see the impact in the U.S. spill over into January numbers.

Firefox users don’t update as quickly as Chrome users (though they do update much faster than IE users). As such, we may see Yahoo’s search share increase further in January as more update to the latest version of the browser.

On the other hand, many users may try Yahoo but ultimately revert back to Google, since Firefox allows this with just a few clicks. It’s thus equally possible we may see Yahoo’s search fall back down in January.

In other words, we’re going to be seeing the effects of this partnership for a few more months, even if a spillover effect wasn’t likely. We don’t know all the details of what Mozilla and Yahoo plan to implement over the next five years — already, Yahoo sites started telling Chrome and IE users to ‘upgrade’ to Firefox. It’s likely there’s more where that came from.

The Mozilla Foundation is a non-profit organization that promotes openness, innovation and participation on the Internet. Mozilla is best known for the Firefox browser, but we advance our mission through other software projects, grants… read more »

Google’s innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major glob… read more »

Yahoo! is the premier digital media company. Founded in 1994 by Stanford PhD candidates David Filo and Jerry Yang as a way for them to keep track of their personal interests on the Internet, Yahoo! has grown into a company that helps p… read more »

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