The United States of Search

State-by-state search data & observations

A nation, undivided

Search is big business. Google answered 1,200,000,000,000 queries in 2012, while raking in over $10 billion in revenue each quarter. Microsoft has had their ups and downs with Bing, but overall revenue for their company hovers around $20 billion each quarter.

With search more popular than ever and companies like Microsoft pouring more and more resouces into it, the competition for your search queries has never been this fierce. Google, Bing and Yahoo! continue to duke it out while newer search engines like Duck Duck Go and Blekko hope to break into a larger market share of search engines in the USA.

At WebFX, we work with US search engines every day and track over 1,000 profiles in Google Analytics. Combined, these profiles are a massive data set of search information from all over the globe. We have search data for over 35,000,000 queries in 2012 across Google, Bing, and other names in search engine market share. Proper analysis of this data reveals the current market share of search engines and the locations where different search engines are popular in the United states.

According to our research, Google owns nearly 81% of the US search engine market, accounting for the vast majority of search engine usage. Bing and Yahoo!, each also a US search engine, both hover around 8%.


While the Unites States remains mostly unified in their preferred search engine, there are many interesting trends to look at when comparing the search giant to competitors Bing, Yahoo!, and other companies that own a part of the search engine marketshare. We crunched the numbers for millions of searches and put together some observations below.

Bing Search Usage

Overall, Bing owns 8.3724% of the search pie. All things considered, Bing search share isn't half bad. Bing seems to hold a stronger market share in the northern Great Plains region as well as the Rust Belt.

Despite being located in Washington, Bing adoption has been slower on the Google-dominated west coast. Bing also struggles in the population-dense east coast in states like New York and New Jersey, which is why Bing search marketshare is so low in comparison to Google.

North Dakota tops the list of states with the highest Bing market share at 14.68%. Wyoming, Delaware, Iowa and New Mexico follow as the states that have the highest Bing usage.

Not surprisingly, California has the lowest Bing market share with 5.28%. Both Yahoo and Google are located in California. Other states with the lowest Bing usage include population centers like Massachusetts, New York and District of Columbia.

States that love Bing

North Dakota 14.68%
Wyoming 13.74%
Delaware 13.31%
Iowa 12.35%
New Mexico 12.22%

States that hate Bing

California 5.28%
Hawaii 5.65%
Massachusetts 5.79%
New York 6.03%
District of Columbia 6.74%


Bing usage doesn't hold any strong positive correlations, however, it does have a strong negative correlation with household size and Obama approval.

Bing's noteworthy correlations all fall into the negative side. Average househould size has a correlation of -0.47 with Bing, meaning states with higher average househould sizes appear less likely to use Bing.

States that favor Bing also appear to lean towards the right of the political spectrum. There's a negative correlation with both Obama approval rating and states that lean Democratic.

Positive Correlations

Republican Lean 0.380638931072356
Obesity Rate 0.243563629684568
Alternative Fuel Vehicles 0.222001239215267
Very Religious 0.208423504479413

Negative Correlations

Household Size -0.471202207228802
Obama Approval Rating -0.416802994648692
Democrat Lean -0.345295957009271
Starbucks Per Capita -0.339417034258359

Yahoo! Search Usage

Yahoo! is still holding on to 7.7534% of the US market share. Yahoo! usage is heavily focused in southern states and the Rust Belt region.

Despite Bing's rise and Google's continued domination, Yahoo! continues to hold over seven percent of the market share. Yahoo! users are heaviest in the southern and midwest areas.

Arkansas boasts the highest Yahoo! usage at 11.69%, closely followed by West Virgina, Oklahoma and Ohio. Those four states are the hubs of the two pockets where Yahoo! is most popular.

Washington, home to Bing, has the lowest market share of Yahoo! at just 4.16%. Colorado, Oregon and Utah also come in at under five percent.

States that love Yahoo!

Arkansas 11.69%
West Virginia 11.32%
Oklahoma 11.25%
Ohio 11.08%
Mississippi 10.50%

States that hate Yahoo!

Washington 4.16%
Colorado 4.37%
Oregon 4.41%
Utah 4.86%
Massachusetts 5.29%


Yahoo! usage correlates very strongly with a number of factors. The 0.714 correlation with obesity rate was the highest of any we tested.

Yahoo! has far more telling correlations than either Bing or Google. Yahoo!'s 0.714 correlation with obesity rate was by far the highest correlation out of all the data we tested. There's also a high correlation with very religious states.

There's a number of intriguing negative correlations as well. Yahoo! usage is lower in areas with more Starbucks and college graduates. There's also a negative correlation with personal income.

Positive Correlations

Obesity Rate 0.714469601270466
Very Religious 0.466367647168989
Average Temperature 0.250985941708864
Unemployment Rate 0.155098692105641

Negative Correlations

Starbucks Per Capita -0.529667640644466
College Grad Rates -0.454153701196173
Personal Income -0.406724437433324
Men to Women -0.323280526349536

Google Search Usage

No matter how many changes there are to the search market, Google is constantly the best engine. Our study shows Google holds 80.613% of the market share.

Perhaps the most shocking statistic is that only one state (Delaware) has a Google market share under 70%. The search giant dominates the country from coast to coast.

According to our Google search engine statistics, Google's stronghold is the west coast with states like Oregon, California, Washington and Arizona all having a market share of well over 80% for Google. The east coast isn't exactly lagging behind in the Google search engine market share either. Massachusetts, New York and District of Columbia all hover around 85% Google.

Who are the oddballs? Delaware easily has the lowest Google market share with 69.49%. West Virginia, Indiana, North Dakota and Ohio all follow ranging from 73-74%.

States that love Google

Hawaii 86.87%
Oregon 86.25%
District of Columbia 86.12%
Massachusetts 85.92%
Colorado 85.28%

States that 'hate' Google

Delaware 69.49%
West Virginia 73.23%
Indiana 73.76%
North Dakota 74.54%
Ohio 74.59%


Google's correlations are very much the opposite of Bing & Yahoo! There are positive correlations with household size, Facebook usage and negative ones with obesity rate and highly religious areas.

With a high number of positive correlations, a picture of Google's user base emerges. Google usage correlates positively with Starbucks per capita, larger households, Facebook usage and college grads. All of these things could be characteristics of an average American middle class family.

The largest negative correlation with Google usage is obesity rate at -0.5194. Google usage also tends to drop in states that are very religious, have an older than average population and lean Republican.

Positive Correlations

Starbucks Per Capita 0.538734140198358
Household Size 0.423296775554897
Facebook Usage 0.402299979554233
College Grad Rates 0.306405416335862

Negative Correlations

Obesity Rate -0.519429721752099
Very Religious -0.32622560303025
Average Age -0.269122946695566
Republican Lean -0.222353782533312