Bing was launched by Microsoft at the beginning of June amid a hail of publicity and the all familiar cries of ‘Google Killer’ from some sectors of the media.
Has there ever been a search engine released that wasn’t called a Google Killer?
Anyway, Bing offered some fancy graphics, a nice background and some interesting features on searching for things like holidays and products. If it weren’t for the fact that it was powered by Microsoft’s extremely limited algorithm it might have actually worked too, however it was, and it didn’t.
Once again searches on Bing, as there were on Live.com and MSN before it produced some bizarre results that defied the logic of the search. Once again a search engine company has attempted to beat Google with the bells and whistles of fancy trimmings and has completely failed to realise what was important, the actual results.
It’s all well and good having a USP, some fancy images, some great features and a multi million dollar marketing campaign, but if your users try the search engine and don’t find what they’re looking for, it’s all for nothing.
Indeed, figures in the US saw Bing’s launch increase Microsoft’s search reach in June to 8.23% of US searches, up from 7.81% from May. That’s a very minor increase for the hugely saturated launch of a new search engine from Microsoft, and one that could be expected as a host of new visitors looked at Bing for the first time to try it out.
I must confess that I looked at Bing when it launched. I tried some searches, found that the results were largely random and promptly headed back to the safety and reliability of Google.
My case wouldn’t be unordinary either, as the bulk of visitors to Bing would have just been curious people wondering just how it worked, could it compete with Google. The answer was a resounding no, and Bing’s launch was a failure.
I’d just like to lay it down now for any future Bings out there looking to create their own ‘Google Killer’ (I’m getting very tired of that phrase). If you want to compete with Google you can’t do it with graphics, or a black screen, or some fancy Ajax scripting. It’s the results. Your algorithm is everything. Without it you’ll make nothing more than an attractive looking failure.