Google has 72% of US searches in December

Google accounted for 72.07% of all US searches conducted in the four weeks ending Dec. 27, 2008, while Yahoo Search, MSN Search and received 17.79%, 5.56% and 3.15%, respectively, according to data released by Hitwise.

The remaining 44 search engines in the Hitwise Search Engine Analysis Tool accounted for 1.42% of US searches, MarketingCharts reports.

In addition to slight growth for Google, both MSN Search and Yahoo Search saw increases of two percent and one percent, respectively, in December 2008 compared with November 2008. This represents the fifth straight month that MSN Search has increased its share.

For 2008 overall, Google accounted for 69.48% of all US searches, representing an 8% increase over 2007. increased one percent in 2008 compared with 2007.

Search engines remain the primary way internet users navigate to key industry categories. Comparing December 2008 with December 2007, Business and Finance, Sports, Online Video and Social Networking categories showed double-digit increases in their share of traffic coming directly from search engines.

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