Qihoo, now the second biggest players in China search market, had reached their annual goal, a 20% market share, in the past October and adjusted the target to 25%, said Yu Guanggong, vice president of Qihoo and head of the search service.
Yu cited results from CNZZ, a third-party web data research service, that Qihoo’s So.com once reached 22.85% in market share in October. As the share of Sogou, the third largest player, didn’t change much, what Qihoo had gained was at the cost of Baidu’s, Yu concluded. CNZZ shows Baidu’s share decreased from 72% in January 2013 to 62% in October.
Mr. Yu also disclosed while the traffic on So.com is about one of third of Baidu’s, the revenue from every user is only one tenth of Baidu’s. One reason is Qihoo, in order to show it’s not evil and greedy like Baidu who mixed untrustworthy medical ads in organic search results, chose not to show pharmaceutical & medical ads in search result pages. Yu also accused Baidu for threatening its partner ad agencies to not to partner with them if they also chose to sell search ads for Qihoo.
Qihoo should have gained one quarter of the China search market now if it could acquire or invest in Sogou. But finally Sogou chose Tencent. In October, the new Sogou which is integrating the team and products of Tencent’s Soso has a combined share of 13.6%.
In early this year, Qi Xiangdong, president of Qihoo, announced their goals for 2014 and 2015 were 30% and 40%, respectively. It looks nobody can stop Qihoo from gaining shares from Baidu.