Measuring Success: Microsoft Bing
Microsoft Bing has been on air for some time now. It has created some flutter and some clutter as well. This post examines how successful has Bing been in its long term approach in its quest to break from third place behind Google and Yahoo!
June is the first full month the Bing “decision engine” has been live. Microsoft positioned the Bing as Decision engines meaning that its search results would allow depth of knowledge and information rather than width.Microsoft said Bing is aimed at online shoppers and will initially focus on helping people make buying decisions, plan trips, research health matters, or find local businesses.
Microsoft is reportedly spending 80 to 100 million dollars marketing Bing but has not publicly disclosed its promotional budget.
Achievement till date: The number of people that used Bing in June for online searches was eight percent higher than the number that used its predecessor, MSN Live, in the same month last year, according to Microsoft. Google’s share of the US online search market was approximately 74 percent.Yahoo! remains the second most popular search engine with about 16 percent of the US market, and Bing is third with 6.5 percent, according to Compete. Figures released in recent weeks by industry analytics firms reveal mixed data, leaving it unclear whether Bing is doing much to close the gaps with Yahoo! and Internet search king Google. Other Internet-tracking firms report different figures, with the ranking remaining constant but conflicts emerging as to whether Bing is gaining, holding, or losing ground.
It’s really too early to tell how Bing is doing; the numbers are really mixed. Microsoft does deserve to pat itself on its back a bit. Bing seems to have had some lift but it is not an extraordinary amount. An increase in visitors is not surprising given the marketing they are doing.
Analysts believe Bing is more likely to lure users away from Yahoo! than Google, which is woven into people’s lives so thoroughly that the company’s name is used as a verb to express the act of searching the Internet.
The next big goal for Bing is not to beat Google, but to beat Yahoo! If they can’t get to number two, then getting past there is much harder.