Highly Concentrated Search Market in China with Remarkable Regional Polarization in Market Share
On Sep 25, 2007, China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) issued the "2007 Survey Report on Search Engine Market in China" on China Internet Conference. This is the third year in succession for CNNIC to issue survey reports on China's search engine market. In this year's report, the statistics on city classification and Internet user partition became the major attraction.
Samples Covered Cities of All Levels, Raising Accuracy and Guiding Value of the Survey
Investigated samples of the report covered seven regions: North, Northeast, East, South, Central, Northwest and Southwest China, involving 3 first-class cities, 7 second-class cities, and 14 third-class cities, with a wider coverage and higher representation than before. In addition, cross analysis of city classification and Internet user partition reflected the searching habits of most Chinese Internet users.
Statistics indicated that Baidu.com has a rising trend as the city level falls, while google.com goes the opposite. The priority ratio for Biadu.com in cities of first, second and third class respectively: 67.33%, 73.35%, 83.82% while that for google.com: 22.11%, 14.78%, 4.99%.
Internet Users Show More Reliance on Search Engines with Decreasing Annual New Users
The CNNIC report showed that, 44.71% of Internet users often used the search engine (many times a day), which indicated nearly half Internet users relied a lot on services provided by the search engine. Besides, those who used the search engines once a day reached 17.2%, which means that as many as 61.9% of Internet users used search engines every day. As can be seen through these statistics, Internet users are relying more and more on the search engines.
Since 2000, the annual increasing rate of search engine users had remained stably at around 12%, while in 2006, the increasing rate fell to 11.32% and by Sep.2007, the increasing rate in 2007 has been 7.7%. As is foreseen by CNNIC, the increasing rate in 2007 will keep slightly decreasing trend.
Baidu.com and Google.com Evenly Share High End User Market
According to CNNIC report, among the search engines that users would choose most favorably, baidu.com took up 74.5%, while goole.com 14.3%.
In addition, baidu.com and google.com drew in the priority market competition for high end users characterized by "non-student users aged 25 and above, receiving Bachelor's Degree and above, having a monthly income of over 3,000 yuan", 47.72% of whom selected baidu.com as first choice while 42.32% chose google.com.
Key to Search Promotion Competition Lies in Reputation; Advertisement is not Effective Enough as Cognitive Channel
CNNIC report showed that in Internet users' cognitive approaches to search brands, 54.03% were through recommendation by others and 41.33% discovered by users themselves when they browsed the web pages. Besides, 8.05% knew the search brands by frequently visiting website links or embedded search windows. Only 7.81% knew the brands through advertisements.
What is more, the investigation report issued by CNNIC included not only core investigation data, but also the profound data interpretation on users' brand cognitive degree, gain and loss ratio; use habits, cognition of price rank, etc. It also covered the investigation analysis on the lateral development of search engines (Tie ba, mailbox, and translation). It is believed that these data and analysis would provide strong support for the search engine enterprises to make appropriate strategies and policies. Meanwhile, they would also help 162 million Internet users get a better understanding of China's search engine market.