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Is Firefox nudging users towards Bing?


Is Firefox nudging users towards Bing?

A small number of Mozilla Firefox users are being directed towards Microsoft’s Bing by default, leaving some analysts speculating that Mozilla has an eye on the search engine for when its current agreement with Google comes to an end in 2023.

According to Ghacks.net, the experiment began on September 6 and is being conducted on 1% of the internet browser’s desktop users. It is possible for them to change their default search engine to Google or another of Firefox’s options in the usual way, or even add a new search engine if their preference is not one of the options, but Microsoft will be hopeful that the experiment leads to more Firefox users becoming comfortable with Bing.

Last year, Mozilla reached an agreement with Google to make its search engine the default choice in Firefox, with the deal reported to be worth an annual fee in the region of $400m to $450m (roughly £290m to £330m) by ZDNet.com.

The same year also saw Google introduce a search choice screen to EU users setting up an Android device for the first time, but statistics show this had minimal effect on search engine market share. Although there were some complaints about the fairness of the auction model from rival search engines, these statistics can be interpreted either as internet users simply overwhelmingly favouring Google or – more encouragingly for Microsoft, should Mozilla’s experiment expand any further – most users automatically using the search engine option presented to them and not taking the time to change it.

While we focus on optimising for Google here at Engage Web due to its mammoth search engine market share, it is worth analysing how you are performing on other search engines and making sure Bing is displaying information about your business correctly. While search engines differ in their approach, a user-friendly website with good content will generally perform well in all of them. For expert assistance, speak to the friendly team here at Engage Web.

John Murray

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