NEW YORK: Facebook, the social network, was the most popular online search term among US consumers during the first eleven months of this year, figures from Experian Hitwise show.

According to the research firm's estimates, 1.09% of all enquiries made by web users in the period from January to November were related to the Palo Alto-based portal itself, or a specific area of its site.

MySpace, which took the top spot for 2008 as a whole, fell to second, on 1.02%, with Yahoo's various properties on 0.95%, Google's portfolio of services on 0.63%, and Craigslist on 0.62%.

Looking more broadly, Experian Hitwise found that 2.48% of all such entries made via search engines like Bing were in some way linked to social networks.

In terms of visitor numbers, however, Google retained its pre-eminence, taking a 6.70% share during the timeframe under assessment.

Yahoo Mail was in second place on this measure, on 4.44%, followed by Facebook, on 4.26%, Yahoo's homepage, on 3.36%, and MySpace, on 3.0%.

When taken to include all of the various websites operated by parent companies, Yahoo actually accounted for 10.60% of all visits, with Google's stable – including YouTube – on 9.93%.

Overall, the 50 most widely-used internet offerings held a market share of 39% during the first 11 months of this year, indicating their comparative strength relative to the "long tail".

Data sourced from Marketing Charts; additional content by Warc staff