On Friday, Internet research firm comScore released a report on the continued expansion of Internet search. “The global search market continues to grow at an extraordinary rate,” said comScore EVP Jack Flanagan.

Worldwide search engine use increased an astonishing 46 percent from December 2008 to December 2009. Over the same period searches in the United States increased by over 4 billion — a 22% increase.

What are the implications for professional services firms? As search becomes more and more ingrained in our lives, businesses need to adapt and take search more seriously. People — even buyers of professional services — are looking to the web and it's search tools to find the services they need.

comScore's research neatly supports the point I made in last week's post on the importance of SEO to professional services firm marketing. If you aren't putting search (and SEO) near the top of your marketing agenda, prepare to be left behind. This boat is moving fast!