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Bing search engine launches new design adding social & expert results

Friday, June 1st, 2012

Bing

BingDo you ever feel like you’re spending too much time searching and not enough time doing? If so, you’re not alone. According to a recent survey conducted by Bing, which launches its new design today (June 1) and Impulse Research, nearly 75 percent of people spend more time than they would like searching for information online.

More than 90 percent of survey respondents reported they are likely to seek the opinions or advice of friends and family as part of their decision-making process around events, purchases, travel and more, and more than 90 percent will even delay a decision to first get input from family and friends.

So, Bing has added social media results to its searches. On the right side of the regular search results, users see a panel that allows them to connect with Facebook or Twitter. It also provides a selection of “experts” who might have information regarding your search.

The new social features in Bing make it easier to exchange ideas, share opinions and take action.

Bing shows which friends have liked or might know about content related to the query and will identify experts and enthusiasts that can provide recommendations on the topic of interest.

In addition, you can post a question and get help from your Facebook friends while you search, friends can easily see and reply to your questions on Facebook or Bing, and you can follow the activity feed to see your friends’ queries and posts in real time.

The new center column, called snapshot, includes information, such as maps and reviews, and quick ways to take action, so booking a restaurant reservation or checking hotel rates are now quicker and easier.

It offers restaurant reservations, hotel reviews, movie trailers and show times, maps, and more right within the search experience, giving you everything you need to take action in one place and eliminating the need to visit multiple sites to complete tasks.

We’ve tried these these features several times and they are useful, if a bit over-hyped. If you’re searching for something that will lead to action – making that restaurant reservation or going to a movie, the extra features are particularly helpful.

For more general searches, it’s not much different.

Bing is also joining forces with DoSomething.org to launch the Bing Summer of Doing, designed to inspire people to do amazing things, including giving back to their communities.

 

Bing nipping at Googles heels in search market

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

BingMicrosoft grabbed slightly more than 30 percent of the search market in March, chipping away at Google’s dominance, according to Experian Hitwise.

Google retained 64.42 percent of the U.S. search market for the month, down from 66.9 percent in February.

Microsoft’s Bing got a 15.69 percent boost from Yahoo Search, which it powers, while 14.32 percent came from Bing itself.

The more disturbing statistic for Google, according to Experian Hitwise more Bing searchers clicked a result that took them to a web page, while only 65.9 percent of Google’s did. Is Bing providing a more relevant search? Or perhaps people often use Google as we do, to find the spelling of a word or name, get a quick definition, or check a location, none of which always requires clicking on a link.

Data from comScore also shows a Google’s market share in decline. Some analysts suggest that if the trend continues, Bing could give Google a real run for its money by next year.

It’s too early to write off Google, which is adding features to its search, from +1 to social search, on a regular basis. Is it possible for a search engine to develop the kind of bloat that has bogged down popular browsers, first Internet Explorer, and more recently, we think, Mozilla’s Firefox.

Google founder and now CEO Larry Page has a reputation for wanting to keep things as simple and direct as possible, however, and may keep a tighter control on that than Bill Gates and crew managed at Microsoft. — Allan Maurer

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