Nielsen/Netratings just released its search share numbers for December 07, completing a year’s worth of search numbers from each of the three companies that report them; Compete, Nielsen/Netratings, and Hitwise. So what can we learn from all of the numbers? Well mostly that tracking search share is an inexact science, at best. John Battelle as much as scoffed at the latest Nielsen numbers, which show Live Search making some significant gains on Google, and indeed the other sets of numbers don’t seem to be showing the same thing. However since each company has reported numbers over the past year, I took a little time and my rudimentary Excel 2007 skills and put together a little comparison.
First, here’s the sets of numbers. Compete came out the other day with some revisions to its numbers over the past year, so I used those. For the others, I went back to their press releases (Nielsen/Netratings and Hitwise) over the past year and pulled the numbers. One note: Hitwise for some reason did not have numbers for January ’07. In order to complete the number sets, I simply took an average of the month before and the month after (=c10+e10)/2, etc. These numbers are shown in red:
Search, Web Search, Search Engine, Search Results, Live Search, Google, Yahoo!, Nielsen, Netratings, Comparission