A new comparative study into the four major search engines has found that results delivered by all four for the same search terms can be very different, with very little overlap between them.
The study was carried out by researchers from Pennsylvania State University and Queensland University of Technology in April 2007 for Dogpile, a meta-search engine which delivers results from Google, Ask, Yahoo and Microsoft Live Search.
First page search results on the four search engines overlap by less than 1%, while just 3.6% of organic results for a given search term are the same across the four. At the time of the previous study, in 2005, this figure was 7%.
The study “Different Engines, Different Results: A Research Study by Dogpile.com” was conducted by researchers from Pennsylvania State University and Queensland University of Technology in April 2007.
Some stats from the study:
The study found that most first page results were unique to a particular search engine:
As well as organic results, paid links seldom overlap: