Baidu did not gain any market share after Google’s departure

I just read an interesting comment by Sun Zhifeng on my blog post about Baidu’s paid search results. The comment stated that Baidu did not gain any market share after Google had left, based on Alexa data. I checked it myself just now, and saw that Baidu’s growth is flat, there is hardly any change at all after Google’s departure. Of course Alexa’s data are not very accurate, especially in China, but for a trend analysis the data should be fine.

Actually the one gaining market share seems to be Google. The line for is now a little higher than the total of and a week ago (note: I don’t think you can add the share of and after the redirection started, because then the results for would be counted double).

I will check again in a few weeks to see what the eventual effect will be, but for now I am surprised but happy to see that Baidu did not gain any market share yet. Having a market with some competition is always better than one with a monopolist that sets its own rules.

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  1. But is Alexa a good source, when it comes to traffic in China? I understand that for some markets, including China, there are just not enough people who use the Alexa bar allowing to include their traffic in the overview. I know there is very little else, but can you trust Alexa for China?

  2. Fons, Alexa is certainly not a good source for traffic from China when you want to compare the traffic of two websites.

    However, I think it should give reasonably good results when comparing the traffic of a website over a short period of time: the sample does not change so you can see whether these people visited the site more frequently during that time period.

    If you want to compare the relative market shares of Google and Baidu I would hesitate to use this data, but I think it’s sufficient to support the conclusion that Baidu did not gain more users.

  3. Other news: .cn is still a walking corpse. Just found out that thankfully still works in China. Without the /music I am forwarded to .hk

  4. Not really surprised. With all of the publicity that Google got from the debacle, the vocal online personalities saying “Baidu is trash”, and more revelations about how much money affects Baidu’s search results, it was bound to stay constant or go down.

    Just a couple days ago a “Google tutorial” post on my local community BBS got a bunch of hits. It was a basic how-to of using Google features like “in-url:”, “site:” and the “index of” trick to find movies and mp3s.

  5. Interesting that Alexa didn’t show much change in traffic volumes, because this graph (apologies, not sure where the data comes from) has been doing the rounds and shows % of market between Google & Baidu, and shows strong growth for Google since their announcement in Jan that they might stop censoring, and then again when they made the switch to HK.

  6. The fact that Google was consistantly beaten by Baidu by a large margin must add to their frustration and contribute to their decision to leave the country.

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