Key industries get more traffic from search engines

Google searches rose 10% in May compared to the same month last year and accounted for more than 65% of all searches last month, according to an online competitive intelligence company.

Industry metrics firm Hitwise reported this week that search engines are still the predominant way that Internet users browse for information on key industries. Categories like travel, media, entertainment, business and finance saw double-digit increases in traffic coming from search engines, while Google expanded its search market lead.

In the four weeks that ended May 26, Google accounted for 65.13% of all searches in the United States. Yahoo! accounted for 20.89%, while MSN accounted for 8.40% and accounted for 3.92%, according to Hitwise. The other 49 search engines that Hitwise tracked drew only 1.66% of U.S. searches.

Yahoo! search figures were down slightly compared to May 2006, when the company accounted for 21.95% of searches, according to Hitwise, which tracked 10 million Internet users. MSN also dropped from 12.10% last year, while's search traffic also fell, from 4.40% last year, according to Hitwise.

Health and medical sites saw an increase of 2.63% (to 44.44%) of traffic generated by search engines in May compared to the same time last year. The share of travel traffic from search engines grew by 13.04% to 31.22% in the same period of time. The share of business and finance traffic generated by search engines grew 14.01% to 15.96%.

Entertainment, news, and shopping and classified saw smaller increases in the percentage of traffic originating with search engines. Entertainment experienced a 7.62% increase to 20.80%, while the share of traffic on news and media sites from search engines grew by 5.97% to 20.34%. Shopping and classifieds experience only a .71% increase in the share of traffic from search engines, to 24.95% in May, compared to May of 2006.

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