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BizReport : Research archives : August 12, 2008

Search engine use on the up

The number of Internet users currently using search engines is at a new high, according to recent research from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, and starting to catch up with email as the most popular online activity.

by Helen Leggatt

PEW_logo.gifThe use of search engines has been increasing over the years. From the start of 2002, until May this year, use of Internet search on a daily basis has risen 69% to reach its current high of almost one in two Internet users (49%). On a monthly basis, around 90% of those surveyed had used a search engine.

The activity is catching up to e-mail which has grown just 15% during the same period from 52% to 60%.

The availability of broadband appears to have a big effect on an Internet user’s propensity to use search engines as it’s easier to turn to the Internet for an answer when using a faster, always-on connection than dial up. “Of all the demographic variables we analyzed, the presence of a home broadband connection had the strongest relationship with a user’s propensity to use a search engine on a typical day,” said the report.

Pew put forward that it is also the proliferation of niche search engines that provide the ability to search blogs, video and news sites that has led to the growth in use, along with content-rich destinations offering comprehensive site searches.

Tags: broadband, search engine

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