January 2012 U.S. Search Engine Rankings

comScore a leader in measuring the digital world, today released its monthly comScore qSearchanalysis of the U.S. search marketplace. Google Sites led the explicit core search market in January with 66.2 percent of search queries conducted.

U.S. Explicit Core Search

Google Sites led the U.S. explicit core search market in January with 66.2 percent market share (up 0.3 percentage points), followed by Microsoft Sites with 15.2 percent (up 0.1 percentage points) and Yahoo! Sites with 14.1 percent. Ask Network accounted for 3.0 percent of explicit core searches, followed by AOL, Inc. with 1.6 percent.

comScore Explicit Core Search Share Report*
January 2012 vs. December 2011
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Explicit Core Search Share (%)
Dec-11 Jan-12 Point Change
Total Explicit Core Search 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Google Sites 65.9% 66.2% 0.3
Microsoft Sites 15.1% 15.2% 0.1
Yahoo! Sites 14.5% 14.1% -0.4
Ask Network 2.9% 3.0% 0.1
AOL, Inc. 1.6% 1.6% 0.0

*“Explicit Core Search” excludes contextually driven searches that do not
reflect specific user intent to interact with the search results.

17.8 billion explicit core searches were conducted in January, with Google Sites ranking first with 11.8 billion. Microsoft Sites ranked second with 2.7 billion searches, followed by Yahoo! Sites with 2.5 billion, Ask Network with 527 million and AOL, Inc. with 277 million.

comScore Explicit Core Search Query Report
January 2012 vs. December 2011
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Explicit Core Search Queries (MM)
Dec-11 Jan-12 Percent Change
Total Explicit Core Search 18,235 17,804 -2%
Google Sites 12,019 11,786 -2%
Microsoft Sites 2,750 2,707 -2%
Yahoo! Sites 2,647 2,506 -5%
Ask Network 531 527 -1%
AOL, Inc. 287 277 -3%

U.S. Total Core Search

Google Sites accounted for 66.2 percent of total core search queries conducted (up 0.1 percentage points), followed by Yahoo! Sites with 16.0 percent and Microsoft Sites with 13.8 percent. Ask Network comprised 2.6 percent of total search queries, followed by AOL, Inc. with 1.4 percent.

comScore Total Core Search Share Report*
January 2012 vs. December 2011
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Total Core Search Share (%)
Dec-11 Jan-12 Point Change
Total Core Search 100.0% 100.0% N/A
Google Sites 66.1% 66.2% 0.1
Yahoo! Sites 16.2% 16.0% -0.2
Microsoft Sites 13.8% 13.8% 0.0
Ask Network 2.6% 2.6% 0.0
AOL, Inc. 1.4% 1.4% 0.0

* “Total Core Search” is based on the five major search engines, including
partner searches, cross-channel searches and contextual searches. Searches
for mapping, local directory, and user-generated video sites that are not on the
core domain of the five search engines are not included in these numbers.

Americans conducted nearly 20 billion total core search queries in January. Google Sites ranked first with 13.2 billion searches, followed by Yahoo! Sites with 3.2 billion and Microsoft Sites with 2.8 billion.

comScore Total Core Search Query Report
January 2012 vs. December 2011
Total U.S. – Home & Work Locations
Source: comScore qSearch
Core Search Entity Total Core Search Queries (MM)
Dec-11 Jan-12 Percent Change
Total Core Search 20,525 19,975 -3%
Google Sites 13,560 13,218 -3%
Yahoo! Sites 3,318 3,191 -4%
Microsoft Sites 2,829 2,761 -2%
Ask Network 531 527 -1%
AOL, Inc. 287 277 -3%

“Powered By” Reporting

In January, 68.4 percent of searches carried organic search results from Google (vs. 68.1 percent in December) while 26.5 percent of searches were powered by Bing (no change vs. December).

About comScore
comScore, Inc. (NASDAQ: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital business analytics. For more information, please visit www.comscore.com/companyinfo.

Mobile Chocolate Festival February 4th

Mobile-Chocolate-Festival-2012.png

The Mobile Chocolate Festival, a celebration of all things chocolate, will be held at the Mobile Civic Center Expo Hall on Saturday February 4, 2012 from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., with all proceeds to benefit Penelope House. The 4th Annual Mobile Chocolate Festival will feature vendors offering samples of their chocolate-related products as well as selling their products and gift certificates- vendors vary from having chocolate-themed wares to succulent confections to jewelry to bath and body products. Also featured: Children’s Area, Mobile Fixture Demonstration Area, Chocolate Challenge (professionals, amateurs, and youth divisions), Project Yum Way (students and aspiring designers participate in a fashion display of chocolate inspired fashions made from chocolate candy wrappers, etc), Chocolate Martini Tasting , Cupcake Booth, Chocolate Milk Mustache Booth and more. Admission is free for children 13 & under; Seniors 65 & above $2.00; General admission $3.00. Call for more details (251-342-2809) or visit www.mobilechocolatefestival.com . All proceeds benefit Penelope House which provides emergency shelter and services to victims of domestic violence.

Location:

Mobile Civic Center
401 Civic Center Dr
Mobile, AL 36602

Contact:

Tonie Ann Torrans
251-342-2809
tonieannt@penelopehouse.org

Alabama Tourism Celebrates The Year of Food in 2012

If you own a business or restaurant in Alabama you may want to contact the Alabama Department of Tourism to see how you can participate in their Year of Food 2012 Celebration Events.  Your local CVB, Chamber of Commerce, and the Alabama Department of Tourism are great partners for you to associate with.

Year of Food Website 2012. foods

The Alabama Tourism Department will kick off its 2012 campaign, The Year of Alabama Food, on January 27, during the FoodBlogSouth event in Birmingham. The event is a conference for food writers, bloggers and photographers. The website, www.yearofalabamfood.com, launched Monday.

The tourism campaign will focus on award-winning chefs, farm-to-table, fresh gulf seafood and popular foods grown or made in Alabama. Some of the local food includes Belle Chevre Cheese from Elkmont, Conecuh sausage, Slocomb tomatoes and Dothan peanuts. This is the second food campaign by the tourism department, the first was in 2005 and received the award for best state tourism marketing campaign by the National Council of State Tourism Directors.

As part of the year of food, the tourism department will hold a statewide “Restaurant Week” August 17-26 during which locally owned and operated restaurants will be able to showcase their dishes by offering meals at a discount.

Tourism will also promote nearly 400 food festivals across the state and will create a new BBQ Trail, in addition to an updated “100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama Before You Die” brochure.

“Food is popular with everyone and it has been one of our most successful campaigns. It was time to bring it back, but this time we want to highlight local food and our great chefs,” said tourism director Lee Sentell. “We have several new things planned for 2012 that we feel will showcase the best in food that Alabama has to offer.”

Food Festivals in the Alabama Calendar of Events

Visitors wishing to discover the local flavor of Sweet Home Alabama are invited to enjoy any of the more than 375 annual food festivals and events hosted by cities and towns across the state. Moon pies and mayhem set the stage for Mobile’s Mardi Gras celebration in February. Moulton celebrates the state’s agricultural heritage during the Chicken and Egg Festival in April. A smorgasbord of Southern goodness awaits visitors during the Slocomb Tomato Festival in June and the Russellville Watermelon Festival in August.

In September, Pinson hosts the Butterbean Festival and Tuskegee pays homage to scientist George Washington Carver during the Carver Sweet Potato Festival in October. The Break’N Bread/ Birmingham Food & Wine Festival is at Pepper Place Railroad Park in October. The National Shrimp Festival is held each October on the white sand beaches of Gulf Shores, and a barbecue competition highlights the Christmas on the River celebration in Demopolis in December. A complete list of 2012 food festivals and other events can be found online by visiting www.alabama.travel.  They will also be featured in the printed 2012 Alabama Calendar of Events available at the state’s eight welcome centers.

Celebrate Alabama Chefs and Award-Winning Restaurants

Travelers can discover the best in fine dining and country cooking restaurants in the South when they visit Chef Frank Stitt’s Highlands Bar and Grill and Chris and Idie Hastings’ Hot and Hot Fish Club in Birmingham, Martin’s Restaurant in Montgomery, Arricia Italian Trattoria & Bar in Auburn, and True in Mobile, which is owned and operated by renowned Chef Wesley True. Learn how Lucy Buffett, owner of Lulu’s in Gulf Shores, and other restaurateurs around the state are bringing the farm to the table to enhance your dining experience.

The popular “100 dishes to eat in Alabama before you die” brochure is being updated to include fresh menu selections and great local culinary destinations not previously featured. “We are excited about spotlighting lesser-known restaurants while continuing to showcase Southern classics, such as The Bright Star in Bessemer, named an American Classic by the James Beard Award Foundation,” said Sentell.

Tourism will also create a new BBQ Trail brochure that will list restaurants, joints and local chains. Some of the featured BBQ will include Big Bob Gibson’s n Decatur, SAW’s in Homewood, Full Moon, Jim N Nick’s and icons like Dreamland in Tuscaloosa and Golden Rule in Birmingham.


Visit Local Farmers Markets and Wineries

In addition to enjoying exciting food festivals and discovering great places to dine, Alabamians and visitors alike are encouraged to get off the interstates and major thoroughfares for a visit to local farms, farmers markets, and wineries. Visit any one of 135 state farmers markets and roadside stands. Sample the goat cheese crafted by Belle Chevre in Elkmont. Enjoy jellies and jams, produced by the folks in Alabama’s Black Belt and sold through places like Black Belt Treasures in Camden.

Discover the Alabama Wine Trail, featuring more than a dozen farm wineries, and explore culinary destinations such as Butlers Mill Restaurant in Graham and Rikard Mill near Monroeville, where you can watch cane syrup being made the old-fashioned way. To learn more about Alabama culinary destinations, visit www.alabama.travel to request free copies of the Alabama Vacation Guide and “100 dishes to eat in Alabama before you die” brochure.

The logo for the 2012 food-themed campaign, a tasty green tomato on a spoon, will be featured in print and television ads throughout the year and a dedicated website, www.yearofalabamafood.com, will launch in mid-January to showcase the local flavor that is uniquely Alabama.

For more information about the Year of Alabama Food visit www.yearofalabamafood.com.

 

Baskin Robbins Announces Winner of Its Online Flavor Creation Contest

Thousands of ice cream enthusiasts throughout the country competed to be named the winner of Baskin-Robbins’Second Annual Online Flavor Creation Contest. After tallying the online votes, Baskin-Robbins today announced that Kelsey Lien of Santa Clarita, California has won the Online Flavor Creation Contest with her innovative ice cream submission, “Nutty Cream Cheese Brownie.”

“Nutty Cream Cheese Brownie,” the November 2012 Flavor of the Month, is a flavorful combination of chocolate fudge ice cream swirled with a cream cheese ribbon, combined with walnuts and fudge brownie pieces. To celebrate her winning flavor, Kelsey visited Baskin-Robbins’ corporate headquarters in Canton, Massachusetts on January 31, where she worked alongside the Baskin-Robbins’ culinary team to create the very first batch of her new flavor.
“On behalf of everyone at Baskin-Robbins, we are happy to congratulate Kelsey Lien on creating such a fun and delicious new ice cream flavor,” said Dan Wheeler, Baskin-Robbins U.S. Vice President of Brand and Field Marketing. “This year, we received an incredible number of inspired Online Flavor Creation Contest submissions and we are thrilled to see so many ice cream fans getting involved in not only entering the contest, but also participating in the voting process.”
“All of the flavors created sounded delicious, which makes being chosen as the contest winner even more of an honor,” said Kelsey Lien, a student at University of California, Irvine, whose area of study is economics and public health. “‘Nutty Cream Cheese Brownie’ was inspired by my love of baking and is meant to bring family, friends and loved ones together to enjoy a modern twist on the traditional brownie. I’m very excited to share my flavor creation with ice cream lovers everywhere when it debuts this November in Baskin-Robbins stores nationwide.”
The Online Flavor Creation Contest began in October 2011 and asked consumers to mix and match their own ingredients to create a signature ice cream flavor from 31 base flavors, a variety of ribbons such as fudge and peanut butter and a copious amount of mix-ins including candy pieces and cookies. Ice cream fans voted for their top 10 favorite flavors and chose the winning flavor, “Nutty Cream Cheese Brownie.” For more information on the contest, please visit http://baskinrobbins.com/flavorcontest/.
About Baskin-Robbins
Named the top ice cream and frozen dessert franchise in the United States by Entrepreneur magazine’s 31st annual Franchise 500® ranking, Baskin-Robbins is the world’s largest chain of ice cream specialty shops. Baskin-Robbins creates and markets innovative, premium ice cream, specialty frozen desserts and beverages, providing quality and value to consumers at more than 6,600 retail shops in nearly 50 countries. Baskin-Robbins was founded in 1945 by two ice cream enthusiasts whose passion led to the creation of more than 1,000 ice cream flavors and a wide variety of delicious treats. Headquartered in Canton, Mass., Baskin-Robbins is a subsidiary of Dunkin’ Brands Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: DNKN). For further information, visit www.baskinrobbins.com.