Google Search Falls Below 65% as Yahoo, Bing Gain

Google's U.S. search share fell below 65 percent for the first time in two years, according to comScore. Bing and Yahoo gained at the search-engine leader's expense.

Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) August U.S. search-engine market share dipped to 64.8 percent from 65.1 percent in July, according to comScore.

No. 2 search-engine provider Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) rose a tick to 16.3 percent from 16.1 percent in July, while its partner Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) Bing gained the most, growing from 14.4 percent to 14.7 percent in the period. By the end of 2011, Bing could double the 8 percent market share it launched with in June 2009.

Many analysts expect Yahoo to hemorrhage market share after agreeing to let Bing power its search results for a decade.

While the search engine's share has dropped significantly over the last two years, it seems to have stabilized, perhaps showing the venerable property's loyal user base.

Google's drop is as big as Bing's approach to 15 percent because it marks the first time that the leading search engine has fallen below the 65 percent mark since September 2009.

At just under 65 percent, Google has little reason to panic. Yet the company's search engineers can't be pleased. Google employs several hundred software engineers to keep the search engine running in top shape.

The massive team would love to get back to its May 2010 status of 66.4 percent share, the company's highest mark ever, according to comScore.

The company in June launched Instant Pages to cut query retrieval times by a couple seconds per query, and added its voice search technology from the desktop.

Both features are available for Google's Chrome Web browser, potentially offering the company a competitive advantage Bing and Yahoo lack.

More broadly, Google's search drop came as U.S. explicit core searches, or those without slide shows and contextual queries, rose 9.1 percent from this time last year. ComScore said the vast majority of the volume growth was driven by Google and Bing's explicit Core search query volume growth.