Yesterday we published a 2007 review of the Web Office market. In that post I concluded that Google Apps was the leader in this space - but this point was disputed in the comments by CentralDesktop's Isaac Garcia, who wrote that "real traction in the business world is yet to be seen or proven for Google [Apps]." This may well be true, but today Compete provided some very useful stats around Google Docs.

The following image shows a rise in usage from June '07 till October. Overall Google D&S had an 84% year-over-year increase.

Compete attributes the leap in June onwards to a June user interface overhaul for Google D&S and "subsequent intense marketing".

Compete also studied the average time on site for Google D&S, which was flat (if not slightly down) during the same period June-Oct:

However as Compete commenter Otis Gospodnetic noted, Google D&S can be slow at times - so this could be one of the reasons for the high 'time spent on site' initially.

Conclusion

I don't think Isaac will be satisfied with these stats, because it was almost certainly mostly a consumer audience that Compete's data comes from; and Isaac's point was that we can't prove Google Apps is a market leader in the enterprise/SMB space. Nevertheless, these stats do show that Google D&S had a big jump in usage in June and so they are probably the leading online word processing tool right now.

However I have asked Compete if they can provide us with comparative stats, showing Google D&S against say Zoho Writer and/or ThinkFree Docs. I will update this post if I get more data from Compete.