Last week, there was a lot of talk about a new ad format Google is testing that essentially places a banner-like graphic near the top of a search results page when the user searches for that brand.
While Google indicated that this was only a small test at this point, many immediately began criticizing Google for breaking a promise it made eight years ago to never have banner ads on search results pages.
Not to be outdone, Bing has a new very visual ad style that it reportedly announced today at a Bing Ads event. The format is called "Bing Hero Ads".
Wordstream's Larry Kim shares some pics from the presentation. Here's one (click over to see the others):
It looks like these go well beyond what Google is doing with a software-like interface for what appear to essentially be sitelinks.
"The pilot project is currently limited to searches conducted in Windows 8.1 in the US," says Kim. "No word yet on if this will make it to the Web version of Bing Search. The test is being run with a limited number of big brands. If you don’t see them, it’s because they’re only show up on a subset of branded searches. Organic search listings appear on the next page, which is accessible by swiping the screen."
I would imagine we'll be hearing more about these from Microsoft soon.
Update: Here's a post from Microsoft.