Russian Search Engine Market Share Review

Consistent with global market trends, Russia has seen significant evolution in their Search landscape over the last 12 months. It’s been almost a year since Russia’s leading tech company, Yandex, unveiled Yandex.Radar, a tool designed to monitor and illustrate search market share and browser trends in Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Turkey. There are some interesting takeaways, starting with the chart to the left.

The chart shows that YoY search share on all devices has actually changed very little. In July 2017, Yandex was the Russian market leader with 54%; one year later, Yandex remains the market leader with a 1% increase in market share to 55%.

If we split out traffic by device, we can see that share on Desktop has also changed very little over the past 12 months. Russia is often described as ‘Desktop First’ market, and the chart below shows that in July 2017, Yandex led with 64% share of Desktop generated queries, and 65% share in July 2018.

The chart below is where things get interesting. Similar to what we’ve recently seen in the EU, and as SearchEngineLand wrote about in 2015, and more recently last year, Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) determined that Google violated Russian competition laws by banning phone manufacturers from pre-installing competitors’ apps. In response, the FAS ordered that, ““Google will develop an active ‘choice window’ for the Chrome Browser which at the time of the next update will provide the user with the opportunity to choose their default search engine.” The opportunity for the consumer to choose has had a dramatic impact on Mobile Search Share in Russia; the chart below shows that in July 2017 there was, approximately, a 60/40 split in favor of Google. Well, 12 months later, that discrepancy has shrunk to 53/46 (with 1% being made up by other alternatives).

As smartphone penetration in Russia continues to increase, Mobile Search Share will continue to have a more significant impact on total share.