The new math: Google gets $1.10 of every new search dollar

I love this press release headline: “Q2 Search Engine Performance Report: Google gets $1.10 of Every New Search Dollar. How can someone get more than 100% of the money spent? Has Google reinvented statistics? Is this gMath?

The press release came from Efficient Frontier, a search engine marketing company. While the headline is weird, it was derived from data that said, “Google took more than its fair share of the overall increase in search spending: for every new dollar spent on search in Q2 2008 versus Q2 2007, $1.10 went to Google. Yahoo lost $0.09, and Microsoft lost $0.01. In other words, advertisers are putting all of their new search dollars into Google, and pulling money out of Yahoo Search and Microsoft Live Search.”

When you read farther down, you learn that “Google maintained its 77.4% share of US search marketing dollars, while Yahoo captured 17.8% of spending and Microsoft Live Search maintained its 4.8% share.”

It would have been more accurate, and understandable, to state that Google gets $0.77 of each search dollar. That wouldn’t make an attention-getting headline, though — and don’t forget, Efficient Frontier is a marketing company.

You can download the entire ten-page “Search Engine Performance Report Q2 2008.” It’s free, but you have to register with Efficient Frontier.

Z Trek Copyright (c) Alan Zeichick