Google & Yahoo Driving Local Search Growth
Last night comScore released a new analysis of the size and growth of the local search market in the United States. comScore defines local search as ‘searches conducted by consumers on the local or directory (Yellow Pages) sections of leading search sites, and other searches identified as having local intent.‘
Google and Yahoo are neck in neck in terms of Local Search Market Share at respected 29.8% and 29.2%. Other popular search engines such as Microsoft Live Search and Ask.com are also in the rankings.
Local specific services such as Verizon, YellowPages.com, Local.com, Infospace and DexOnline also appear in the list as important forces in Local.
Google Sites 29.8%
Yahoo! Sites 29.2%
Microsoft Sites 12.3%
Time Warner Network 7.1%
Verizon Communications 6.6%
Ask Network 2.7%
InfoSpace Network 1.9%
All Other 3.2%
Local Search usage is up : According to the study, 63 percent of U.S. Internet users (or approximately 109 million people) performed a local search online in July, a 43-percent increase versus July of 2005.
And some more information from the comScore release:
Based on a recent comScore Search Satisfaction study, 41 percent of those conducting a local search were searching for something in their home area, as opposed to searching for information on businesses in locales that they intended to visit. Additionally, among those searching in their home area, 59 percent indicated they were searching for a restaurant or something entertainment-related, such as a theater, theme park or an attraction for sightseeing. Another 52 percent said they were searching specifically for a business phone number or address. Two out of five local searchers (41 percent) were looking for information on a local service in their home area, including car rental office, dry cleaner or lawyer.
The comScore study also found that performing a local search drives consumers to take action. During the second quarter of 2006, 47 percent of local searchers visited a local merchant as a result of their search behavior, while 41 percent made contact offline. More than one-third (37 percent) made contact online as a result of conducting a local area search.
“Local search is experiencing strong growth as more consumers adapt to the ‘always on’ nature of their broadband connection, which enables them to quickly find information on local businesses,” said Jack Flanagan, executive vice president of comScore Media Metrix. “With approximately 849 million local searches conducted by Americans in July, local advertisers have a sizable market that can be reached through leading search sites.”