comScore: Yahoo Beat Google in Web Traffic Visitors (But Not Search)

Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo! and former Google exec, at a recent tech conference in San Francisco. - Photo by JD Lasica

comScore statistics from July show Yahoo received 196.6 million unique U.S visitors to its sites, a figure higher than the corresponding figures for Google (192.3 million).

Although this has reversed Google’s dominance for the first time in two years, the new stats do not necessarily mean the power balance has shifted.

Yahoo’s first-place ranking shouldn’t come too much as a surprise, the two internet giants have been vying close to each other for a long amount of time. The figures simply represent normal fluctuations in traffic numbers and are more than likely to change in the coming months; for example, Yahoo is up around 8 million visitors compared to June but was recovering from a hit of minus 4 million from May.

Andrew Lipsman, comScore Vice President of industry analysis at comScore concurs:

“There is this perception that [Yahoo] was further behind to begin with, and that’s not the case… Yahoo has been a very close second here for the last few months and has always been one of the top few properties.”

Despite the increase in Yahoo’s share, Google still owns the majority of search traffic, roughly two-thirds.

The comScore results show that Yahoo actually lies in third place, behind Bing, in the search traffic results.

In terms of these ad sales, Google still claims a massive advantage over the rest of the field with $12 billion in revenue received in the last quarter.

This dwarfs Yahoo’s received $1.1 billion during the same time period – a decrease from the year before.

The web traffic results are also tainted by the fact that mobile results are not included. Google’s mobile presence is more advanced than Yahoo and the final results will ultimately be changed.

Robert Hof, a contributor for Forbes has noted that the lack of these numbers is “potentially huge.” comScore expects to release these additional figures soon.

Despite the discrepancies with the web traffic results for July, the rise in Yahoo’s desktop visitors does represent a success story for Marissa Mayer who only became CEO of the company in mid 2012. Hof adds that:

“Yahoo’s showing is an important symbol that Mayer can rightfully point to as an indication that the company at least is no longer losing ground.” He goes on to say, “Mayer herself noted during Yahoo’s second-quarter conference call that its traffic had risen in June from a year ago, which she said was unprecedented for an established company that had been on the decline.”

However, despite the interest in ex-Google employee Mayer herself, the effect she has had for July cannot represent a resounding victory for Yahoo in the overall battle for number one spot. More work and a set of consistent results are needed until she and the company can claim to be on the right track.

You can view the full set of comScore statistics here.

Banc Media are a search marketing agency based in Manchester, specialising in SEO and PPC. Get in touch today to find out how we can increase traffic and leads to your website – call 0845 459 0558 or click here to request a callback.

Image credit: ‘Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo! and former Google exec, at a recent tech conference in San Francisco’ Photo by JD Lasica.