Best search engine in Korea

Who is going to be the best search engine in Korea? Naver vs. Daum

Going back to the history of when web portal services first began in Korea, ‘Daum’ was founded in 1995, and it was the first website that had the e-mail system as well as web portal communities called ‘Daum Café’. Unfortunately, ‘Daum’ lost its popularity rapidly because of the appearance of ‘Naver’ in 1999. The reason wasn’t necessarily because ‘Daum’ offered services that were not satisfactory to Koreans. During that period, a game website called ‘Hangame’ became popular among all aged groups. Adults could play one of the common Korean card games, ‘Go-stop’. Children could play, ‘Tetris’, with their friends online. When Hangame was at its peak, Naver ended up buying Hangame.  As a result,  Naver started to outperform Daum especially after Naver started buying companies out from then on. So, who is the best search engine in Korea at the moment? Is it Naver or Daum?

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For example, Google is pretty much dominating the search engine market in the world. Unfortunately, Google will have to come up with new strategies if they want to compete with Naver or Daum. Korean search engines offer various services.  In particular, the café blogging communities are unbeatable. Internet marketing is mostly based of the blogging communities rather websites. Since it works completely different from how it works with ‘Google’, it is one of the reasons why foreign companies have a hard time entering the market.  Now that you have an understanding of unique internet scene in South Korea, it is not the matter of ‘Google’ that is dominating to be the best search engine in Korea. At the moment, it is simply a battle between the two.


Today, the most well-known internet search engine is Naver. Not to mention the market share ratio of Naver to Daum is about 7:3 in Korea. Lately, Daum not only partnered with Twitter to allow the users to utilize tweets through their Daum account, but also emerged with Kakaotalk in order to compete with the big search engine giant, Naver.  In Korea, about 90% of mobile messenger app users have Kakao talk on their mobile phones. For Daum, it was a strategic move to win the race.  However, the owner of another messenger app, ‘Line’, is currently being used by 4 billion people in 230 different countries unlike ‘Kakao talk’ that is only popular within Korea. Even though Naver is still dominating the market, who knows Daum could be preparing something to beat Naver? There is still a question mark remaining for becoming the best search engine in Korea.


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