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March 2012 - Browser Barometer
Published on 10/05/12 - The browser market trend observed in Europe during the 1st quarter of 2012 was the same as in 2011: the challengers, Google Chrome and Safari, continued their growth whilst Mozilla/Firefox and Internet Explorer in particular lost more and more ground.
The following graph shows traffic distribution by browser; it is an estimation of the average distribution of visits which were recorded on websites in Europe in the months of March 2011 and March 2012. The traffic distribution for 23 different countries was estimated (for further information on this please read the Methodology).
The same two browsers continued to gain ground over several months:
Google Chrome, 3rd in the browser top 5 in Europe, reached 18.9% of traffic in Europe in March 2012:
Safari, 4th with 11.2% of traffic in Europe, continued its growth with a gain of 3.4 points between March 2011 and March 2012.
The leader, Internet Explorer, lost more than 8 visit share points between March 2011 and March 2012, falling to under the 40% mark:
Mozilla/Firefox, 2nd in the browser top 5, continued to lose ground with a 3.2 point loss in one year:
Opera maintains its 5th position and for the first time lost almost half a point between March 2011 and March 2012 to fall to 2.1% of traffic.
The following graph shows traffic distribution by browser, an estimate of the average distribution recorded on websites in Europe over the last 13-month period.
There are clear trends to be seen on the browser market:
The N°1 and N°2 browsers lost ground over the months
Google Chrome gained ground and reduced the gap with Mozilla/Firefox
- June 2011 vs. March 2011: +1.9 points
- September 2011 vs. June 2011: +1.9 points
- December 2011 vs. September 2011: +2.3 points
- March 2012 vs. December 2011: +0.7 points
Safari continued to increase, as a result of the growth of Apple’s mobile terminals.
Since January 2012, Opera has had its lowest visit shares over the last 13-month period (2.1%).
We are now going to have an in-depth look at the countries concerned by both the evolutions of Internet Explorer and Google Chrome which are greater than the European average: Belgium, Italy, Portugal and Spain.
The following graphs provide more information on these 4 European countries. They show an estimation of the average distribution of the top 5 browsers in visit shares, for websites in each of these 4 countries, between March 2011 and March 2012.
In Spain and in Portugal, Google Chrome is in 2nd place in the browser top 5 with 1 out of 4 visits on average in March 2012 (24.8% and 24.5% respectively compared to 18.9% in Europe)
In Italy, Google Chrome is the 2nd leading browser with an average visit share of 23.5% in March 2012
In Belgium, Google Chrome is in 3rd place and came ever closer to Mozilla
The following graph shows traffic distribution by browser, an estimate of the average distribution recorded on websites in France over the last 13-month period.
In France, Mozilla/Firefox with 28.3% of traffic in March 2012 is still ahead of Google Chrome with 20%
The beginning of the year has been promising for Google Chrome which now accounts for an average of 18.9% of visits on websites in Europe in March 2012. The gap with Mozilla/Firefox (26% of traffic) has become increasingly reduced and if the trend is not reversed, Google Chrome will be ahead of Mozilla/Firefox. However, the growth of Google Chrome, which was significant in 2011, was reduced in the 1st quarter of 2012: is this a temporary slowdown? Or, is Google Chrome reaching a certain limit (because of user profile, user background, etc.)? To be continued with our next set of data.
Safari continued to climb thanks to Apple’s success: a 3.4 point increase in one year and a 11.2% visit share in Europe.
Internet Explorer has now fallen to under the 40% mark in visit share in March 2012 in Europe.
We are interested in the average distribution of visits, by browser, which have been recorded by a certain cross-section of websites (except mobile websites).
In order to establish the cross-section of websites to be used as part of a study, a website is only used if the selection criteria, which have been established previously, are respected. These criteria are very strict and their aim is to remove any websites which have an anecdotal audience, or a chaotic audience, or whose collected data underlines a dysfunction in the measure.
For each country, only websites whose traffic has been mainly generated within the country itself are considered. In addition to this, only visits to these websites which have been generated within the country itself are considered. We calculate average traffic distribution per website. For every website, the visit share for each browser corresponds to the total number of visits of the analysed browser compared to the overall number of visits for all browsers combined over a given period.
The European indicator is representative of the countries audited. The average visit share in Europe corresponds to the average of the indicators for the 23 countries studied. To evaluate the average, all countries are regarded as being equal in the value of their parameters.
The 23 countries included in the study were: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.