But Altavista had a hard time fighting spam listings in their results.
While spam grew logarithmic in Altavista, some company named Google found a way to prioritize web pages more intelligently, and thus keep spam out better.
When people tried Google and compared it was Altavista, it became an easy switch. Since then their market share in the industry dropped to almost nothing, with only visitors from old bookmarks. Altavista never (tried to) recover. Yahoo! is now the proud owner of this piece of history.