What are the top search engines in China?

Here, we look at which search engines dominate the search market in China today.

Perhaps surprising these days is that Google was once popular search engine in China. In 2010, however, Google all but disappeared from China’s search market, citing censorship as the main incompatibility. 

So which search engines dominate the Chinese search market today? Let’s take a look:  

Top Search Engines in China: Overall 

*data source statcounter.com 

Baidu is the top search engine in China, with approximately 70% market share (interestingly, Baidu is also the 2nd largest search engine in the world), followed by Shenma at just 17% and Haosou at a negligible 5%. Google still makes the list, but with less than 2% market share. 

Top Search Engines in China: Desktop 

*data source statcounter.com 

Baidu still commands the biggest search engine market share in terms of desktop usage in China. The difference here is that more people use Haosou (17%) on desktop than Shenma, which makes sense, because Shenma is a mobile-focused search engine. 

Top Search Engines in China: Mobile 

*data source statcounter.com 

Baidu still commands the biggest search engine market share, but we can see that Shenma comes second with 22.75%. Again, this makes sense, as Baidu continues to dominate, but Shenma gains ground with its mobile-focused approach. 

Chinese Search Engine Market Penetration: Overall 

*data source cnnic.cn

In 2016, Baidu’s market penetration rate was 82.9% among all search engine users, followed by Sogou and Haosou at 41.1% and 27.3%, respectively. 

Chinese Search Engine Market Penetration: Desktop

*data source cnnic.cn

In 2016, Baidu’s penetration rate was 80.8%, followed by Sogou and Haosou at 33.8% and 30.1%, respectivelywhile no other search engine could surpass 2%. 

Chinese Search Engine Market Penetration: Mobile 

*data source cnnic.cn

In 2016, Baidu’s penetration rate was 78.9%, followed by Sogou and Haosou at 36.1% and 19.1%, respectivelyWe can see that Shenma, which focuses only on mobile search has less than 10% penetration rate, showing just how difficult it is to compete with top search engines that do both mobile and desktop. 

These stats can help you decide where to direct your digital marketing efforts in China, especially if you’re thinking of mobile over desktop or vice versa.