Why Google is Synonymous with Search Engines
When searching for the closest ice cream shop near your house, what search engine do you use? Even though there are many engines to choose from, we’d bet you turn to Google. If you did, you wouldn’t be alone — over 90% of search engine users trust Google to provide answers.
When the search engine debuted in 1998, there was nothing else in the market quite like it. Google was the first to focus on the relationship between website links. This new approach propelled Google to the forefront of the search engine industry where it’s stayed ever since. Even when others entered the market, like Bing in 2004, it was clear: Google is THE search engine.
Today, “Google” is now so synonymous with “search engines” that people say “Google it” rather than “search it.” But how did Google become the industry leader of search engines? Here are three reasons why Google stands out among its competitors:
- Market share: Google dominates search engine market share at 91% as of May 2022, compared to Bing’s 6.72% market share, Yahoo’s 3.11%, and DuckDuckGo’s 2.42% market share. With so many users, Google gets faster results from their tests as they continue to innovate.
- Innovation: Google continuously innovates to maintain the best user experience possible. For example, it routinely tweaks its algorithm, with core web vitals as the latest update to ensure that sites with a quality user experience rank on top.
This obsession with innovation means Google dictates the direction the industry moves. This was clear in the summer of 2021. During this time, Google opted to remove its broad match modifier, a search process that brings forth ads if the keywords show up in the search query in the exact (or a similar) form. Bing was adamant that they would continue to utilize their broad match modifier as it was key in their processes. However, not even three months later, Bing removed their broad match modifier.
This trend continues over and over again as Google sets the standard for search engines. From launching enhanced conversion tracking to counteract data disappearing due to privacy concerns to developing its AI capabilities to recognize user intent with greater accuracy, Google is truly defining the future of search engines.
- Dedication to quality: Google’s top focus is crafting the best user experience possible, as noted in their “focus on the user and all else will follow” This complex search engine is made very simple for users. No one needs a tutorial or explanation to easily find the answer they are looking for. This ease of use is possible thanks to Google’s hyperfocus on user experience. Things like site structure and site speed are great examples of Google’s focus on user experience. Google rewards websites from a ranking perspective when they are easy to navigate and load quickly. Google also rewards advertisers by giving them higher quality scores and, therefore, lower CPC. Quality melds with innovation in examples like sitelinks and schema markup. Users have become accustomed to seeing expanded search results now, with stars and links to deeper pages, but these additions to search results came from Google’s drive to create new, better experiences for the searcher.
Google continues to not only be the industry leader, but it defines the search engine industry. Google is the force behind why the phrase “let me Google that” has become synonymous with “let me search that.” Why? Because of the accessibility and accuracy it has built by surfacing answers for searchers around the globe.
What does this mean for marketers?
To continue to improve both paid and organic search performance, marketers must optimize against Google’s best practices. Google is the gold standard for search engines and continues to set the prioritization for the industry at large. If brands optimize for Google, they will succeed across all search engines. The proof? From a paid standpoint, history has taught marketers that anything Google rolls out, Microsoft is bound to roll out shortly after. And for organic search, optimizing for Google’s best practices will also set brands up for success on other search engines.