ComScore to Measure Local Search

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ComScore Networks said yesterday that it now tracks local Web search behavior through its qSearch panel of Internet users.


The qSearch Local service tracks searches using some type of local qualifier -- a ZIP code, city or state name or terms like "map" and "directions." It tracks across the top 25 Web search engines, including Google, Yahoo and MSN. The service ranks the top search engines for local searches, the number of local searches and the type of local searches.


ComScore gathers data from the search behavior of its qSearch panel of 1.5 million Internet users worldwide, including 1.1 million in the United States. The Reston, VA, Internet measurement company launched qSearch last April.


The qSearch Local data will not include searches done on Internet yellow pages sites and directories like CitySearch, which are measured separately. Graham Mudd, a comScore analyst, said the company eventually would give data across all sources of searches for local content.


"We're quickly moving toward a point where we integrate all these types of searches so they can be compared by total volume, engine and search type," he said.


In its first measurement of local Web search activity, comScore found that U.S. Internet users conducted more than 200 million searches with local modifiers in October 2003.


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