“Google” is the most popular Search Engine in Japan, with a 75% market share. Yahoo is second with 14%.
When Japanese people want to find information online, they usually use web search engines like Google, Yahoo or Bing on their web browsers. Even though some people now use social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube to find information, most still believe that web search engines are the most important way to search for things online. They are seen as the go-to option for finding what you need on the internet.
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Google is Japan’s most popular search engine, with over 75% of the market share. It was founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in 1998 and has since gained tremendous popularity. Business owners and marketers focus on optimising their presence on Google because it helps attract more customers. Google has become a highly valuable brand worldwide due to its dominance in the market. It offers various features like finance, shopping, and flight searches, contributing to its increased popularity.
With a market share of nearly 14%, Yahoo remains a strong contender in Japan. Established in 1994 by Jerry Yang and David Filo, Yahoo has maintained its share through localised content, integration with other services, and strong brand recognition. Offering services like Yahoo Mail, Yahoo Maps, and Yahoo Messenger, Yahoo continues to be a preferred choice for many Japanese users.
Bing is Japan’s third most popular search engine, holding around 8% of the market share. Launched in 2009 and owned by Microsoft, Bing is available in 40 languages. Japanese users appreciate Bing’s AI capabilities, which are preferred over regular chatGPT due to its simplicity. Unlike other chat AIs like Bard or chatGPT that require registration, Bing doesn’t have this requirement, making it more user-friendly. Its popularity has grown further as it becomes the default search engine on Windows. When people buy a new Windows system, they often stick with Bing since changing the default settings can be challenging for new users.
Baidu, Japan’s seventh most used search engine, holds a 0.5% market share. As one of the largest AI and internet companies globally, Baidu offers various search and community services, including Baidu Baike (an online encyclopedia) and Baidu Wangpan (a cloud storage service).
Other search engines such as Naver, DuckAndGo, SEZNAM, Startpage.com, and Qwant hold a market share of 0.5% or less in Japan.
Understanding the popularity and dynamics of the top search engines in Japan is crucial for businesses aiming to attract more customers through digital marketing in Japan. With Google leading the way in Japan, businesses prioritise optimising their presence on this dominant search engine. However, it’s also essential to consider the preferences of Japanese users who use Yahoo and Bing, As the digital landscape continues to evolve, staying updated on the evolving preferences and market share of search engines in Japan becomes a key aspect of successful digital marketing strategies.