With Google today revealing the top 10 Australian searches for 2010, a clear difference between the world’s most ubiquitous search engine and its chief rival, Yahoo!7, has emerged. It seems Google is used primarily by either internet novices looking for well-known sites or by browsers preferring to link through to sites rather than enter a URL. Yahoo!, on the other, is used to research teen idols.

The top six places on Google’s rankings are all famous and well-established websites: Facebook, YouTube, Google itself, eBay, Hotmail and Yahoo. Every one of these sites can be accessed by placing ‘www.’ before and ‘.com’ after their names.

By contrast, Yahoo!7 top searches of 2010 included Lady Gaga (#1), Justin Bieber (#3), Lindsay Lohan (#6) and Kim Kardashian (#7). No celebrities featured in Google’s top 10.

The more abstract search terms amongst Google’s rankings were ‘real estate’, ‘maps’, ‘commonwealth’ and ‘white pages’. One can only assume the penultimate in that list refers to the Commonwealth Bank, and not to Australians setting to learn more about our nation’s constitution.

Google also released a list of the Fastest Rising News Stories of 2010, which gives an insight into which stories captured the public’s interest most during the year. Top of the list was ‘Chile earthquake’, though it was the mining disaster that was more prevalent. Also on the list was Haiti, the iPad and iPhone 4, Vancouver’s Winter Olympics, the Melbourne Storm scandal, the BP Oil Spill and the FIFA World Cup. The World Cup, which was #2 on Yahoo!7’s overall list, only ranks #10 on Google’s news list.

Google’s Top 10 Australian Searches

1. Facebook
2. YouTube
3. Google
4. eBay
5. Hotmail
6. Yahoo
7. Real Estate
8. Maps
9. Commonwealth
10. White Pages