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Searching stats in the States

Alex Christie

11 August 2008


I came across a report on the weekend by Pew Internet & American Life Project about the increase in Search use.  To sum up it says almost half internet users use a search engine on a typical day.  It is not far behind email where 60% use it on a typical day.

While they are the facts from the study I find it hard to believe that 40% of internet users dont count checking email as a regular thing they do online.

This study was done in the US, but some other interesting things are that the typical searcher is a college graduate (66%), earning over $75,000 (62%), 18-49  years old (55%) – was quick to graduate college – and male.

The percentage has been increasing steadily over the past couple of years.  In 2004 it was 30% and 2005 it was 40%. They speculate on why this has increased and their reasons include:
– the Google IPO increasing publicity
– onsite search inproving
– increased use of broadband
– that search engines have become so evolved that they are now used to answer broad questions

I would probably add to this list
– with the internet growing so fast we need a quick way to navigate to the content we are looking for and a well developed search engine is an ideal method (but a lesser developed search engine3 is a definition of frustration)
– Search engines getting better at ranking different types of content (webpages, news, videos etc)
– People are now using search engines instead of the address bar.  Looking at the various analytics for our clients I can see that a lot of people coming through on a search for www.client.com

It is American data, I have come across a similar study in China earlier this year that I might post on later.

BTW the image is not overly relevant – just like the Google Olympic themed logos.



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