NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Facebook topped Google to become the most visited U.S. Web site last week, indicating a shift in how Americans are searching for content.
Web analysis firm Experian Hitwise said Monday that the social networking site surpassed Google to take the No. 1 spot for the week ended March 13.
“It shows content sharing has become a huge driving force online,” said Matt Tatham, director of media relations at Hitwise. “People want information from friends they trust, versus the the anonymity of a search engine.”
Facebook accounted for 7.07% of U.S. Web traffic that week, while Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) received 7.03%. The study compared only the domains Facebook.com and Google.com — not, for example, Google-owned sites like Gmail.com.
Though the traffic levels were close, Facebook’s year-over-year growth far outpaced Google’s that week. The number of visitors to Facebook spiked 185% compared with the same period last year, while Google’s traffic climbed just 9%.