• Durant Imboden

    One obvious question that comes to mind is, “What exactly would Microsoft be selling it it sold Bing?” What about data centers and other infrastructure, for example? Would a buyer be able to purchase Bing without being locked into a long-term lease of services from Microsoft?

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    Note: I made my own research on Bing&Google&market relations (under the “research” I mean research, not search engine usage to get data collected by someone).

    Your analyze is very superficial.

    1. You didn’t mention Bing rewards program. My research shows, that people are very loyal to it. They are not excited, but they use it. This is very cheap way of promotion ;

    2. Market share charts provided by you, say almost nothing in this case, since different markets have different value. You provided worldwide share, but no doubt, that value of the market share in India, where Google dominates absolutely, is not the same as the value of the market share in US, where Bing is pretty popular.

    I didn’t dig deep into this by myself, but in the article like this geographical differences should be considered.

    3. Also market share you mentioned covers ALL searches, including mobile. With Android domination no doubt, that Google has advantage. But should mobile search be considered same way as the regular search? I’m not sure, because behaviors are obviously different, when one uses mobile and non-mobile searches.

    So, I believe, that this question also should be covered by you.

    4. Your article sounds, like MSFT spent most of the money on promotion. I believe you should clearly stated, that most of the billions were spent on search engine itself (infrastructure, data centers, hardware, development, etc). These expenses do not vanish, but increase value.

    It also would be nice to show Google’s expenses. Google also spend a lot on its search engine, isn’t it?

    5. I believe, that lately search engine can’t be considered as separate matter. It should be considered as part of OS. If MSFT will be able to succeed with Windows 8.2+, then Bing will get the boost.
    Android and Chromium should be considered respectively .

    I doubt MSFT can succeed with OS alone, without the integrated search engine.
    Anyway, this is another topic should be covered.

    6. Time factor and market share.

    Time factor is against Google, means it is Bing’s gain. Google lost its novelty. Its search is not innovative enough for regular user.

    Also I wouldn’t consider stable market share since 2010 as good sign for Google. Major changes took place since then, but market share remains the same. Is it good sign ? Or is it sign, that users are not so excited about all of the Hummingbirds and Knowledge graphs ?

    How about this statement :
    Since 2010 Bing made its market presence unquestionable. Google tried to increase market share, but didn’t succeed.

    These are just some notes about the topics I believe should be covered by you, writing article like this.
    I’m not able to support my statements by facts, providing links, since some of the local editors use their moderation privileges for censorship.

  • Shannon Sofield

    Google is no longer returning relevant search results for me. There is opportunity to take market share if you can return the search results to what they were a few years ago. Don’t pigeon-hole me based on my past search results.

  • Nathan Safran

    Good point. That would mean that Microsoft would market to consumers with that angle “we won’t pigeonhole you with our results”–something Duck Duck Go is doing a bit of. I think the question would be if that is enough to get enough momentum of shift from Google to Bing.

  • http://www.antivenom-seo.com Brandon Shallenberger

    The should go the route of yandex and drop link metrics. Appease SEO’s.

  • Shannon Sofield

    I like DDG and what they are trying to do, but they are not a true search engine. They don’t spider or index the web, they simply rely on third party APIs (for the most part). I’d take Google from 7 years ago, spam and all.

  • Faux Wood Beams.com

    If Microsoft were smart, they’d position Bing as the savior of small businesses by really boosting their analytics and to provide enhanced keyword research in response to Google cutting off the flow of keyword data. A good campaign that highlighted Microsoft supporting small businesses, since they were more affected by the change than the big box retailers, etc., combined with better, free analytics data would definitely help and would encourage the business owners, etc. to use Bing instead of Google for their own searching. It certainly can’t hurt and could help.

  • neonspark

    as apple is finding out, you cannot build an ecosystem without some sort of bing-like entity. that’s why apple made maps and siri. technically MSFT doesn’t need to “win” the web search market. far less people are searching on the web and most are searching within their devices. furthermore, social is something far more people are spending time with than searching, meaning google’s failure at social may prove fatal long term as rival FB, and similar networks lock google out of people’s minutes.
    yes google will still rule search online. but it is increasingly irrelevant for most people’s activity online has long left surfing random sites an searching for products. the panic to get google plus traction is proof of this. google has essentially forced a social network nobody wants, and still don’t want to their users. but so far, I’d give bing more success kudos than I’d give google plus against FB.

    therefore MSFT needs bing to ensure it never gets locked out by google from essential services. they don’t have to win the web search game to justify their investment is an essential one.

  • neonspark

    money. money that they would spend re-building it when they get locked out of maps, news, location services, etc, and all the other data processing bing does. This is why MSFT will NEVER sell bing. The search aspect of bing is just one dimension of it. Bing increasingly powers a lot of Microsoft products that require knowledge-graph and data which bing gathers as a side purpose. Apple would kill for such a system.
    and let’s not remember, bing is just as relevant as google if not more in some cases. but they are fighting user habits. IE still the top browser even if technically others are better. but that’s not important. As google is increasingly closed and hostile to providing their services in platforms other than their own, case in point there is no youtube app on roku, windows 8, or anything outside android and iOS, even when it would benefit google, and MSFT even built such app for free, MSFT cannot afford to lock itself out. Next thing you know, google redirects windows to a 404 page with search and windows wouldn’t be able to search the web.
    Bing is insurance against the google hardball game of closed services only available on devices and services which they don’t see as a threat.

  • Spuffler

    Money can’t buy my love. I refuse to use Bing simply because Microsoft owns it. Microsoft set the bar as they shafted me many times over the years prior to Bing. “Fool me once…”, you get the rest. Sell it, bury it, give it away, I don’t care one whit. I want a more neutral scenario, and (wonder of wonders) Google also isn’t “it” for me. I’ll keep choosing as we go along. Today, I’m leaning away from DuckDuckGo, for lack of search result efficacy, but the ddg position on tracking is a good start, IMO.

  • bradleyquist

    I use Bing and have no problems with it. I’ve never searched for something and not been able to find it. Oh, and I know it’s gimmicky bait, but the Bing points are worth it. I’ve gotten plenty of Xbox points off of searches that I’ve used for DLC on Xbox games. It’s awesome.

    People give Bing a bad rap, but if they try it they’ll realize it does everything Google does.

  • Spuffler

    Appease SEOs? What about the user? Should there only be one search engine, the one intended to please the market analysts? Hmm.

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    During my research I asked people to review Google.
    People wrote how Google provided new possibilities to them.
    They can search now everything they need just in a few clicks, blah blah blah …

    But then I brought their attention to the fact, that they were not reviewing Google, but the Search Engine in general and asked to specify, how Google is better.

    No one did )

    Note : most of such respondents were not from US (mostly India).

    It’s possible to make following conclusions :
    1. people don’t know about Bing in many parts of the world ;
    2. market share charts in absolute figures say almost nothing. Values of the market shares should be considered.

    How is it important for us, web developers ?

    I’d prefer 500 US visitors from Bing, rather than 1000 non-US from Google (figures provided are the samples only).

  • http://www.antivenom-seo.com Brandon Shallenberger

    I was talking from recent experience with negative SEO being aimed at a client , so you can understand my sentiment. As for the user, link metrics could be replaced with better indications of quality to users. What that may be, I don’t know. In any case links have been used and abused to there and back again , and it would tie into the idea in the article of provide less pigeonholed user experiences to replace them or lower their importance.

  • Gamer First

    MS has in the past combined new products with their operating system to blow out competitors. It worked with Internet explorer, windows media player, etc.. Now it’s bing. What’s suprising is that it’s not working. What that says to me is that not only are people not using bing they are actively trying NOT to use it.

  • Bear Thorsen

    I’m no professional strategist, but here’s a thought — given the gripes over privacy issues nowadays, imagine if Microsoft modified Bing to become the most private search engine possible? Meaning, no snooping, no ads, no NSA backdoor to see everything you ever searched. I’m a happy user of Firefox, but to feel comfortable searching, I need to download and install several extensions so that I’m not bombarded with ads and programs that track my search history. Now imagine if Microsoft rolled out a new Bing…a “Bing 2.0” that comes standard with adblock and privacy. That’s a search engine I would use, and likely many others. Their lost revenue from ads space would be countered by increased credibility in Bing as a search engine and Microsoft as a brand. Anyway, just my two cents…

  • tiredoftea

    In truth, I have their solution. But, I’m not giving it away for free! The new CEO can contact me when he/she is in the office.

  • http://digitaleditions.dlook.com.au Corri

    With the speed at which online now operates, only a very brave soul would rely on the surety of Google’s future. Our fickle search habits can be replaced simply with a new home page or search engine preference. Sure Google is synonymous with search, as is Hoover with vacuuming. While Bing has struggled to gain significant market share, for me, it will come down to Google who foolishly lose it in their attempts to strangle the market.

  • Chris Koszo

    Agreed! A monster of a marketing case study. Small textbooks will revolve around this when my (unborn) kids are in college. A 3-point plan paraphrased in a blog post is just scratching at the surface with a feather.

    I too, believe that Bing has been successful in their own right in the past few years. Also don’t forget that Bing is a great porn video search engine with playing thumbnail previews, the whole bit hehe! I just realized this after a fellow SEO brought it up, and made me think. Search is evolving big time, and Bing had to first get in the race before they could worry about winning.

    I think soon they will be in a position to start making it a 2-horse race.

  • Chris Koszo

    Links aren’t going away, ever. Some form of “voting” if you will, always will exist. It’s how the world works, how human interaction works. Even if Skynet becomes self aware, it too will need input and a “childhood” of experiences. Someone will be doing their best to influence these experiences.

  • Chris Koszo

    @JustConsumer:disqus in your opinion, which U.S. markets/ or even verticals, currently have the most opportunity in Bing? In other words, any populations in the U.S. that uses Bing more than the average?

    I’m asking because many SEOs are spending time and money on very diminishing returns by worrying about squeezing out the last few percentages of Google traffic when instead they could spend that time diving deep into the Bing algorithm and learning how to beat all their competitors in that engine.

    Bing is friendlier and not as fanatical about penalizing sites and links as Google is lately, so it would make sense to try to optimize for it. Especially if you knew your market has big potential.

    Time to dig into Bing WEbmaster Tools and their non-ad based search volume tool. Someone please make the earth day longer!!

  • Globular Cluster

    Beating Google would be easy. Google has the problem of trying to sell you something instead of giving you what you are searching for. Then they go and weed out the very results you want. Bing would win if it was giving you the results you were looking for instead of ads for the first few pages of results. Also, porn. Google filters out too much pron and never shows what you actually searched for. Bing is fixable, but if it were fixed it would not be selling stuff so much, so it would not make money. Thus a catch-22.

  • http://www.cornelissen.nu/ John-Pierre Cornelissen

    One thing I miss in this article is more integration because that is what they are doing now. In the past you had to open your web browser and start a search engine. Now in Windows 8 they added a general search option to search your computer and the internet at the same time by using Bing. The search option in Windows Phone also use Bing.

  • nagleonce

    Who’s in charge at Bing right now? Does anybody know?

    In mid-2012, Microsoft hired Mark Penn (a major pollster from the Clinton campaign team) to make Bing into a winner. He ran some attack ads criticizing Google. Nobody noticed. A year later he’d moved to Microsoft’s advertising unit.

    As of last November, Harry Shum, head of Bing R&D, was moved over to Microsoft Research. Any idea who replaced him?

    We hear about Bing’s management team mostly when people leave it.

  • Liam Clarke

    My Solution – Partner with schools in every country and change the mindset while they’re young. By partnering up, offering free PC’s software and of course, the mindset would change in a few year, and all those kids starting school, it ten years time, will be saying “bing it” instead of “google it”. Change the culture!!

  • Ben Bristow

    Shame that Bing only focus on the US site and not the UK and other regional sites. Takes ages for them to update the UK site.

  • Arif Momin

    When the competition is too strong and all the tricks and strategies were in vain, MAKE FRIENDS WITH ENEMY will solve the problem. If profits are more important than ego to Microsoft they should collaborate with Google and stop the profit bleeding. This would be my step if Become the new CEO of BING.

  • Nathan Safran

    @bearthorsen:disqus I like your thinking on that–now is the time to make that move too! Duck Duck Go has done a lot on that–positioning themselves as “we won’t track you”, and they seem like they’ve gotten some traction with that angle.

  • Nathan Safran

    Maybe :). But entrenched user behavior can be difficult to move without a compelling reason for people to do so :)

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    I’m not in SEO and don’t look at things from SEO perspective.

  • Nathan Safran

    Interesting idea. It would be a pretty long term play but interesting nonetheless.

  • Nathan Safran

    But why would the market leader collaborate with and help the competition?

  • Arif Momin

    Microsoft is a market leader in software not in search engine (leave USA & some parts of Europe aside) look at Google’s share of 65% – 67% and Bing has 11% – 14% wheres the competition?

  • http://www.seo-theory.com/ Michael Martinez

    People STILL do not get Bing.

    They don’t have to compete with Google. They just have to make a profit.

  • Cody Prentice

    A couple of things in my opinion on Bing. First off, I am in the SEM / SEO business and when I am forced to use Bing as a search engine, I spend a TON more time re-searching for information that I need or am looking for. Bing almost never gets it right for me on the first try. Whether this is built into my search DNA of knowing how to phrase searches for Google (being used to Google as my go to search engine) or whether this is evidence of Bing being an inferior search engine… I’m not sure. So if I were Bing, I would invest in three specific areas. 1) Algorithm and usability: and seriously try to be as close to a mirror of Google as physically possible in algorithm. You don’t have to show different results to steal market share, just simply listen to what users say they are lacking from Google and improve upon an already awesome system. 2) Create a slightly more aesthetic interface than Google. Again, listen to the user, and incorporate their ideas. 3) Be the search engine behind the scenes: See “Siri powered by Bing”. I think this is the biggest step forward once you have locked up area 1. Continue to power as many searches as possible on smart phones, like Siri, XBOX live (which is already happening) and any other methods in which people are consuming media. Then leverage this in your marketing efforts.

  • Guest

    Here’s a tip… MAKE A DIFFERENT PRODUCT. Differentiate your product beyond the layout, colors, imagery and search results… actually be different… Search is still fundamentally the same as it was with 10 links several, several years ago. Does nobody notice this?? Can nobody improve this layout?? Sure some queries bring up extra data, and the font has changed slightly over time… but who cares?? I’m not actually using the search engines information anyway, I’m using the search engine to find the resources that I can site, use, trust, reference, believe etc..

    The world didn’t need a Best Buy and a Circuit City and the world doesn’t need a Google and a Bing. Microsoft is trying to become Google and be better than Google at what Google does… it is the same thing Circuit City did..and look what happened to them. What part of copying another giant’s business model makes any sense when your the underdog pushing the same service?

    No wonder they can’t capture the market… Microsoft spent years putting patches on existing software, calling it a new product and made billions doing it. No real shock that they can’t figure out how to completely DIFFERENTIATE THEIR PRODUCT… But I guess it isn’t in their business culture to be “that” creative.

    Microsoft is in bed with Facebook, great, they want social interaction to matter in search? I don’t give a s#%t what my friends are searching for and DO NOT show me their results. Give us social interaction based on the individual user by the individual user’s searching “adjustments” (wait what? Yeah create some new features that don’t exist yet)… Such search “adjustments” which could allow for up and down votes on URL’s / don’t show me URL again / ban all URL’s from this domain etc… you know, create helpful and useful features so people can influence their results not just robots or force people to use preset “advanced” searching.

    These would be options that I can select before I press search and options to fine tune my search results after the button has been clicked… then program the software to learn my choices over time and give me personalized recommendations of what I expect to see in my search results when I go online based on MY choices not an automatic robot that is just taking an educated guess at what I’m looking for and what sites I have visited in the past.

    I certainly do not want to sort through 4 pages of crappy regurgitated blog posts from the echo chamber, I want to be able to find actual business pages with real information from people who are actually qualified enough to hold a career in the subject matter and so on.

    Am I the only person wanting these features? I don’t know.

    How about this: Microsoft can start with a massive survey, collect the data, make the changes the people want and then test their user adoption afterward… But they shouldn’t push typical arrogant Microsoft reps spewing nonsensical data or horrible self-serving ads like “bing it on” to push this product.

    People will not listen to a company just because that company “told” the people that “they” would like their product better because a few people they interviewed did… the company has to prove they are actually better by actually creating a product people want, then showcase how this product is different.

    And that is exactly how I would capture a much larger marketshare for Bing. Oh and I would also fire Razorfish for producing the same crappy marketing & advertisements over and over that clearly do not work to capture the marketshare they are after.

    So there, now that I’ve put the idea out there, shouldn’t be to hard to capitalize on it.

  • http://www.rankinstyle.com/ Jacques Bouchard

    Actually, Chrome is the top browser now. Unless something has changed since July. http://www.webpronews.com/chrome-is-now-the-most-popular-browser-in-the-u-s-2013-07

  • http://www.rankinstyle.com/ Jacques Bouchard

    One area Google repeatedly fails me is in searching for recent blog posts. I want up-to-date blogs, and Google serves up old ones on the topic from 2007. That’s not helpful!

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    I believe you are wrong about “Microsoft is trying to become Google and be better than Google at what Google does”.

    MSFT develops search based on Touch.
    Google develops based on Voice.
    Two different approaches. Two different use experiences.

    Watch this : wtff [dot] com/p.php?h=Bing_19

    Thought I agree about “people can influence their results not just robots”.

  • Guest

    Clearly you missed the entire point of my comment.

    Differentiating a search engine does not mean or have anything to do with the mechanics of how the search engine actually works….my entire point was on the user interface, design and how people interact with it. It had nothing to do with how the search engine fetches it’s data for a query.

    Perhaps you should reread what I wrote and provide a comment without a link to your website next time.

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    “my entire point was on … how people interact with it.”

    “MSFT develops search based on Touch.Google develops based on Voice.
    Two different approaches. Two different use experiences.”

    Perhaps you should reread what I wrote.

    P.S. Web is not garage. You will see a lot of links all around. Get used to it )

  • Guest

    “my entire point was on the user interface, design and how people interact with it.”

    Is not the same as:

    “my entire point was on … how people interact with it.”

    Do you see the difference?

    You left out the interface and design part which ARE fundamentally the same in both search engines AND are elements that require differentiation. For example, they look almost identical aside from minor layout changes.


    Yet you seem to keep quoting that microsoft develops on touch and google develops on voice… that is irrelevant to my statement…

    If anything, all you did there was prove that Microsoft is, yet again, behind the curve since they are lacking a feature that their competition has. You don’t think Google evaluates their data from touch screens??? Google works on touch, Bing doesn’t work with voice… Bing fails again.

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    “You left out the interface and design part …”

    No, I didn’t. That’s why the link was provided.

    “You don’t think Google evaluates their data from touch screens???”

    This is not about screens, but about interaction. Click and Touch are not equal. Not on the web.
    Again. See the video with the new search approach by MSFT following the link provided.

  • Guest

    You are getting hung up on semantics.

    Simply put, you can’t have touch without a touch screen or something that responds to touch like a projector, water blade or other touch technology.

    Google evaluates all data, including data from touch… then they have moved beyond touch to the realm of voice… Microsoft is still working on touch and hasn’t rolled out a voice search feature yet.

    So Microsoft has failed to be different than Google because they just mimic everything Google does with their own slight tweaks. That is NOT product differentiation and that is NOT how to win the market share which is what this entire blog post and my comments are about.

  • http://wtff.com/ JustConsumer

    Derek, this is web development we’re talking about. A lot of smart people did a lot of work to evolve it. You can’t compete with them and there is no reason to “simply put”. Take your time and study difference between click event and touch event, behaviors behind these events and everything related.

    According to your profile you’re “webmaster, Joomla website developer, online marketer & website data analyst” and should know such things.

    And my apology, if you’re still “Automotive Mechanic”.

  • Guest

    Again, you are lost in semantics. Maybe the concepts I am talking about are over your head or you just don’t understand very well what I am saying.

    Obviously web development is what it takes to create the change Bing needs to capture the market share. AND there is no doubt it took a lot of people to create Bing. However, looking at click event and touch event behavior will NOT differentiate their product enough to win the market share.

    Bing will not win the market share by trying to beat google by being “Google with different results” AND they won’t beat google by having less features!

    Oh and by the way, yes I do still work on cars, I love working with my hands and it is a hobby that I enjoy. If you have something wrong with that, then that’s your own problem,

  • Ran Eyal

    Google managed to be #1 because they were aggressive with their advertising.
    Their main key is their chrome browser which was pushed by so many software/freeware companies to get ahead of the competition.
    Now that chrome represents such a large share of the browser market – They can sit back and relax as every chrome installation comes with a built in Google search.

    I think that Microsoft should develop a new browser that will be a strong competition for GC and take the market share through it. It can sure use the download valley companies to distribute it across the globe and start biting in these crazy percentages of Google.

    Taking on Google search without taking on Chrome is useless in my humble opinion.

  • Charles – The Great and Powerf

    One thing Microsoft can do is expose Google for pirating thier core business model from someone else who invented it long before Google existed. And Google never paid to utilize the invention. Another thing they can do is strip Google out of Windows and secure Windows a future in the mobile industry. In South Africa 8% market share transferred from google to Bing during one quarter of successful Windows Phone sales. Android will no longer save Google’s market share and I believe Microsoft is gearing up to take out botnet’s that pad Google market share numbers. Google’s on its way out.