Volume of Search Queries Jumps 15 Percent in Past Five Months, Driven by the 'Big Three' Search Engines, According to Nielsen//NetRatings

Image Search Requests Skyrockets 37 Percent, Followed by Double-Digit Growth

of Local, General Web and News Search Queries

Dec 13, 2005, 00:00 ET from Nielsen//NetRatings

    NEW YORK, Dec. 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Nielsen//NetRatings, a global
 leader in Internet media and market research, reported today that the volume
 of Internet search queries grew to more than 5.1 billion in October 2005, up
 15 percent from five months ago (see Table 1). Ask Jeeves led as the fastest
 growing search player out of the top five search engines, skyrocketing 77
 percent in search volume, while Google maintained its leader position with the
 largest market share of nearly half of all searches, or 48 percent, by
 generating 2.4 billion requests.
     The top four search players, Google, Yahoo!, MSN and AOL have maintained
 the same rankings in the past five months with little to no change in market
 share. Ask Jeeves leapt into the top five spot, garnering a 2.1 percent market
 share in August, edging out My Way Search, and has maintained its top five
 position in subsequent months. In October, Ask Jeeves held a search market
 share of 2.6 percent.
     "Search volume continues to increase and is generated consistently among
 the 'Big Three', growing their collective market share," said Ken Cassar,
 director of strategic analysis, Nielsen//NetRatings. "Google, in particular,
 continues to find itself in an enviable position, enjoying dominant market
 share and very strong growth."
     Table 1. Top 5 Search Engines and Latest Share of Searches, June & October
      Provider         Jun-05         Oct-05      June to Oct.   Oct-05 Share
                      Searches       Searches        Growth       of Searches
                       (000)          (000)
      Total          4,447,406      5,134,713         15%               --
      Google         2,032,222      2,449,396         21%            47.7%
      Yahoo!           965,642      1,118,429         16%            21.8%
      MSN              540,686        582,702          8%            11.3%
      AOL              358,667        368,130          3%             7.2%
      Ask Jeeves        75,808        133,932         77%             2.6%
     Source:  Nielsen//NetRatings MegaView Search, December 2005
     Picture It -- Image Queries Take the Lead in Growing Up
     Image is the fastest growing vertical among the search requests across all
 search engines. While general Web searching continues to capture the largest
 search activity, requests for images shot up to 328 million queries in
 October, up 36.6 percent from five months prior (see Table 2). Local, Web and
 News searches strong growth as well, garnering increases of 19.2 percent,
 14.2 percent and 12.7 percent, respectively.
     Cassar continued, "As the search market continues to mature, consumers'
 relationships with the major search engines have only grown deeper. Natural
 selection is alive and well on the Internet."
     Table 2. Breakdown of Search by Vertical, June & October 2005
      Search            Jun-05             Oct-05              June to
      Verticals        Searches           Searches           Oct. Growth
                        (000)               (000)
      Image            240,393             328,275             36.6%
      Local            148,907             177,494             19.2%
      Web            3,951,107           4,511,808             14.2%
      News              31,706              35,721             12.7%
      Shopping          70,351              77,270              9.8%
     Source:  Nielsen//NetRatings MegaView Search, December 2005
     About MegaView Search Service
     MegaView Search service is based on the Nielsen//NetRatings' MegaPanel(R),
 which provides search providers and Internet publishers with the most
 comprehensive intelligence to develop efficient advertising opportunities by
 providing marketers insight into how consumers navigate through the Web. By
 combining these survey results with the actual surfing habits of the
 respondents, search providers and Internet publishers are able to better
 understand how consumers are searching online. MegaView Search was the second
 product introduced from MegaPanel, an online syndicated suite of services that
 provides comprehensive Internet market research for key vertical industries
 including financial services, search, online retail, travel and local markets.
     About Nielsen//NetRatings
     NetRatings, Inc. (Nasdaq:   NTRT) delivers leading Internet media and market
 research solutions, marketed globally under the Nielsen//NetRatings brand.
 With high quality, technology-driven products and services,
 Nielsen//NetRatings is the global standard for Internet audience measurement
 and premier source for online advertising intelligence, enabling clients to
 make informed business decisions regarding their Internet and digital
 strategies. The Nielsen//NetRatings portfolio includes panel-based and
 site-centric Internet audience measurement services, online advertising
 intelligence, user lifestyle and demographic data, e-commerce and transaction
 metrics, and custom data, research and analysis. For more information, please
 visit www.nielsen-netratings.com.
     CONTACT:  Tracy Yen, +1-408-941-2932, or Suzy Bausch, +1-408-941-2965,
 both for NetRatings, Inc.

SOURCE Nielsen//NetRatings