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Search Engine Market Share: September 2017

There are a small handful of different search engines that index the internet for you to find the sites that are relevant and important to what you’re looking for. As you plan and execute your law firm’s online marketing strategy, it’s important to keep an eye on how the market share in the search engine field is distributed. If you don’t, you might end up paying more money for less web traffic as you pursue rankings on a faltering search platform.

This is why we at Myers Freelance keep our ears to the ground on the search engine industry and periodically check in with market share analyses. We first did this in November, 2015, and most recently in February, 2017. It’s high time to check in, again.

Google’s Dominance Solidifies

According to Net Market Share, the field of internet search engines across the globe looks like this:

Google’s market share has increased slightly, up another percentage point, with most of those losses coming – unsurprisingly – from Yahoo!’s global search engine efforts. Yahoo! has restructured their company, sold their search engine to Verizon, and then suffered a massive data breach that left it with little sway in the global search engine market.

Google Beginning to Show Traits of a Monopoly

Google’s control of the search engine market has become so tight that antitrust experts are beginning to wonder if it has reached monopolistic power, yet. Even if this power is not yet present in the search engine field from an economic standpoint, it most certainly seems to be the case if you look at how Google controls the flow of information: Its algorithms determine what sites are prominently displayed for more than 81% of the world’s online searches, giving it unprecedented control over what information is seen and what is not.

Impact on Your Law Firm’s Online Marketing Efforts

These macro worries about the future and Google’s eventual and seemingly inevitable world domination aside, though, recent market share numbers highlight the importance of focusing your law firm’s efforts on ranking well in Google, as opposed to other search engines. However, just because Google controls four-fifths of the market does not mean that you should neglect Bing, the largest alternative to Google. While this has more to do with pay-per-click (PPC) ad purchases than traditional search engine optimization (SEO), Bing’s lower search volume should mean PPCs on its platform cost less, as well. This can be helpful for law firms with lower budgets who are getting priced out of their market.