Earlier this month Bing launched the “Bing it on” challenge in the US. This was an open attack at winning over some of Google’s majority market share; the challenge was a blind search engine taste test in which participants selected which search result format they preferred between the two search engine giants! Results proved to be in Bing’s favour with 60% of the users preferring their offering.
In the US, Bing has seen their market share gradually improve and is showing no sign of slowing down in their attempt to win more. In fact Microsoft is allocating an estimated $100 million in marketing spends for Bing.
However Google is still the heavy weight champion here in the UK with more than 90% share of search engine traffic. But can they hold this vice like grip on our search habits much longer?
The battle of the search engines continues with the launch of the social search in the US. Bing introduces its new social side bar whilst Google present ‘search plus your world.’ So what are the key differences in the two services?
Well Bing’s new social sidebar incorporates your friends and followers from Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and even Google+. So now you can tap into your friend’s knowledge when searching and can even share your search query so as to get their valued opinions and recommendations. Also Bing has recently partnered with Klout, who measure social media influence so not only will you get friends knowledge on your searched subject but also the knowledge of the experts in that area.
Whilst Google ‘search plus your world’ will conduct your search as normal unless you select “view personal results” which will then display your friends photos, posts and information that relate to your search. Google have received criticism on their social search offering as the results favour Google+ – not surprisingly Twitter has been their biggest critic, saying it was “bad for people, publishers, news organizations and Twitter users.” Google have since released a statement explaining that ‘search plus your world’ is still in the development stage and that they are learning from the process.
Conclusions? Google certainly seem to have fallen behind as far as social search, but Bing has an uphill task if they’re going to convert the apparent strides they are making in product development to dent what seems to be the UK’s firmly entrenched habit of “Googling!”