Could this be the beginning of the end for Google’s reign over the Web? According to a report published this week, Internet icon Yahoo! recently usurped Google as the top company in terms of Web traffic in America.
Analytics group comScore released their latest list of top Web properties in the US on Wednesday, and long-time winner Google wasn’t at the time for a change. Yahoo, the nearly 20-year-old company that conquered the search engine market in the 1990s, is listed by comScore as the company responsible for receiving the most US Internet traffic.
For the month of July 2013, Yahoo! Sites attracted the most traffic with 196,564,000 unique visitors. Not far behind in second was Google at 192,251, followed by sites administered by Microsoft, Facebook and AOL.
Google has held comScore’s number one spot every month since April 2008 except for on two occasions. With the latest information, though, Yahoo is once again at the top.
Yahoo last reigned in at number one for a brief stint in May 2011, according to the analytics group, and the reason behind the unexpected surge more than two years later isn’t immediately clear.
And although Yahoo recently acquired the popular blogging site Tumblr in May of this year, comScore told reporters that it wasn’t included in its parent company’s stats.
“Seems there are other factors at play,” comScore said in a statement to MarketingLand.
Also absent from the list, however, is information pertaining to mobile traffic. Even if Yahoo has maintained a strong presence on the Web for nearly two decades, it failed to venture into mobile media with the same success as its top competitor. Robert Hof, a contributor for Forbes, said the absence of those numbers is “potentially huge,” but added that Yahoo’s recent win means something for the company’s recently hired chief executive officer. News of the comScore report comes as perhaps the biggest victory yet for Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who took over the company only last year.
“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,” Hof wrote. “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.”
Speaking to analysts on a conference call last month, Mayer said of her plan, “Hire and retain a great team; build inspiring products that will attract users and increased traffic; that traffic will increase advertiser interest and ultimately translate to revenue.”
“People, then products, then traffic, then revenue,” she said according to Bloomberg News
According to comScore, though, it could just be a fluke. In the statement to MarketingLand reporter Greg Sterling, the comScore said of the report, “[G]iven how close Yahoo Sites and Google have been in recent months it can likely just be normal seasonal/month-to-month fluctuations.”
A press release issued by comScore alongside its August 2013 list declined to identify other analysis about how Yahoo Sites garnered the most traffic this month, but the group did say that there’s been a surge in recent weeks with regards to online retail.
“Back-to-school shopping was top of mind for many Americans in July, seen by a spike in traffic to Fashion and Accessories sites, as well as Consumer Goods sites for school supplies. Coupon sites also saw pickup as consumers went on the hunt for savings,” the release reads.