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comScore says global search market grew 46 percent in 2009‏

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comScore has just released a study on growth in the global search market in 2009. The study revealed that the U.S. remains the largest search market worldwide, while Google Sites retains a commanding position in the global search market.

More than 131 billion searches were conducted worldwide in December 2009, a 46-percent increase in the past year. This number represents more than 4 billion searches per day, 175 million per hour, and 29 million per minute.

The U.S. represented the largest search market in the world with 22.7 billion searches, or approximately 17 percent of searches conducted globally. China ranked second with 13.3 billion searches, followed by Japan with 9.2 billion and the U.K. with 6.2 billion.

Google sites ranked as the top search property worldwide with 87.8 billion searches in December, or 66.8 percent of the global search market. Google sites achieved a 58-percent increase in search query volume over the past year. comScore didn't report what percentage of worldwide searches were conducted on Google and YouTube separately, just Google sites in combination. But according to comScore qSearch, YouTube accounted for close to 28 percent of the expanded search queries conducted in the U.S. on Google sites in November 2009.

Yahoo! sites ranked second globally with 9.4 billion searches (up 13 percent), followed by Chinese search engine Baidu with 8.5 billion searches (up 7 percent). Microsoft sites saw the greatest gains among the top five properties, growing 70 percent to 4.1 billion searches, on the strength of its successful introduction of new search engine Bing.

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