[Posted by Shar VanBoskirk]
My recently released piece "Search Loyalty Is Still Hard To Find" has gotten a lot of press. Some of it for a faulty conclusion. I’ve corrected the notion that I was trying to introduce a "Google Killer" with this research on a few blogs. Glad to see the right interpretation of our our data popping up as well! I thought it might be worth setting the record straight from our own blog.
My primary assertion in this research is, that although Google’s lead in the share of online searchers continues to grow, users find that other search engines are actually more effective for certain things — like looking up stock quotes or finding news stories. Smart marketers should most certainly advertise on Google and Yahoo! but should also target niche audiences via less expensive and more flexible media on AOL, MSN, Ask.com, and Internet service providers.
In no way would I argue with Google’s dominance in this market (it leads significantly in terms of both consumer searches and marketer spend managed). Nor am I expecting that Google’s lead is one that will be caught up to by Yahoo!, MSN or any new entrant. What I am arguing with this research is that alternative search engines can offer more flexible ways to reach some types of audiences. Advertisers looking to expand their programs and increase the sophication of their paid search buys should definitely experiment on engines beyond Google.