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Yahoo beats Google in U.S. traffic for first time since 2011

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
August 22nd, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

It appeals to the American desire to root for the underdog. For the first time since 2011, Yahoo has topped the Google search engine. The research firm comScore says that Yahoo logged 196.6 million unique visitors in July, compared with its rival's 192.3 million.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This should be encouraging news for Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, a Google veteran who has focused on overhauling Yahoo's image.

When Mayer started at Yahoo in July of 2012, the company lagged behind Google by five million page views, with 163 million unique visitors to Google's 190 million. It was believed that Yahoo would remain at Number Two, no matter how hard it tried. 

Mayer then focused on overhauling the company's Web properties, such as its e-mail service and the photo-sharing site Flickr.

"Those things matter," Andrew Lipsman, an analyst for comScore says. "When a company can re-engage or re-spark interest, it has ancillary benefits" across the network.

The war is far from over. Lipsman predicts that both Google and Yahoo are likely to continue to fight it out for top dog. The numbers are particularly impressive for Yahoo as they do not include the firm's acquisition of blogging site Tumblr, he said. If July's numbers had included traffic to Tumblr, Yahoo would have seen about six million additional users, he said.

Mayer has ordered redesigns of many of the firm's most used products. She says he intends to make Yahoo products daily habits for users. She has also cut less lucrative products, such as the early search engine Altavista, which Yahoo shuttered early last month.

Meanwhile, Mayer has gone on an acquisition run, including paying $1.1 billion for Tumblr in May. Yahoo has picked up more than 20 companies in the past year that could help inject new life into everything from the company's ads to its mobile apps, which are a main focus for Yahoo and its competitors.

This gives Yahoo an edge in a world where more tech-savvy people are now turning to Smartphones and tablets.

Yahoo is currently in third place for mobile traffic, comScore reported, trailing behind Facebook and Google. But as the company revamps its products, its standing could improve, Lipsman says.

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