Ask Jeeves More Than Doubles Internet Traffic

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In the first month since closing on the acquisition of new search properties, Ask Jeeves increased its Web traffic 150 percent to become the sixth-most-visited Internet property in June, according to comScore Media Metrix.


The Internet measurement firm said yesterday that Ask Jeeves' monthly unique visitors ballooned to 39.3 million, up from 15.7 million in May. The traffic explosion, which vaulted the company up 18 places to No. 6, came thanks to the addition of properties acquired through Interactive Search Holdings, including the MyWay, iWon and MySearch portal sites.


Ask Jeeves executives painted the $501 million ISH acquisition as a way for Ask Jeeves to quickly expand its reach in the search market. According to comScore, Ask Jeeves and the ISH search properties accounted for 6 percent of Internet searches in May. Last quarter, the Emeryville, CA, search engine said it increased queries 42 percent from the same period a year earlier, excluding ISH's properties. Combined, Ask Jeeves said its search properties handled 1.7 billion searches in the quarter.


The increased market share figures to help Ask Jeeves in its negotiations with Google over renewing their paid search distribution agreement, which expires in September 2005 but allows for either party to terminate it this September or October. Google's paid search ads accounted for 69 percent of Ask Jeeves' revenue in the first quarter.


Another search property saw its traffic surge from a recent acquisition. InfoSpace had a 44 percent rise in traffic in June to 19.2 million visitors thanks to its purchase of Internet yellow pages site Switchboard.


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