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Google hits five-year UK search market share low

Google's share of the UK search market has hit a five-year low, according to a report from global information services company Experian Hitwise.

Some 89.33 per cent of all Internet searches conducted in the UK in October were made through Google. This represents the first time in five years that Google's UK market share has fallen below 90 per cent.

Bing, however, gained some market share, claiming 4.71 per cent of all UK searches - almost a full one per cent rise from the same month last year (3.85 per cent).

"In the UK, Bing has been using very aggressive tactics of promotion for last few months, in preparation for the Christmas season. But Google is still dominant, and we would need to see a trend over more months to call it a consistent decline," Luca Paderni, an analyst at Forrester Research, told the BBC.

The surge in Bing searches may be due to the October launch of Windows 8. The desktop operating system packs Bing as its default search engine, and was likely used more than usual as a consequence.

However, Yahoo and Ask are among other services that managed to gain some ground.

As far as the UK market is concerned, Google is still way ahead of its nearest rivals, but that's not the case in a handful of other countries. For example, Baidu and Yandex are the first choice search engines in China and Russia, respectively.