The situation in the US is being watched very closely as this is where Bing is initially concentrating it's efforts, both in terms of the engine development and testing, and in terms of advertising.
The below graph (courtesy of Statcounter) shows how that over the past 2 and a half months, Bing has been gradually building market share from 6% to 12% in the US. During the same period, Yahoo has remained considerably stable, dropping from around 12% to 11%, and Google has dropped the other 5%. Google is still clearly the dominant force, with around 77% share:
This is clearly great news for Bing. The initial objective was to be the 2nd biggest player in the market. With the gains they have made in the last few months, plus with Yahoo giving up in the search engine battle and handing their share over to Bing, it looks like the first battle has gone in favour of Microsoft.
However, Mashable have reported that statistics released from Nielsen tell a different story.
Whilst the lose in share for Google from June to July is still recorded, the Nielsen figures suggest that it was in fact Yahoo that gained the market share and not Bing.
June 2009 figures:
July 2009 figures:
These results are quite intriguing and unexpected. All 3 major engines gained volumes of search queries month-on-month with the industry as a whole recording a rise of queries by 5%. However, Yahoo's volume of searches rose 11% (compared to Google's 3%), which took it's market share to 17.1%.
It is thought that the increase could be explained due to the huge amount of media interest surrounding the Yahoo/Microsoft deal and the launch of the new Yahoo homepage. It will be interesting to see what figures Nielsen release for August and whether this trend continues.
Either way, it is good news for Bing, as any market share loss for Google is a step in the right direction for them. However, with Google creating their own media interest around the new caffeine platform, it is quite probable to see things swing back in their favour.