Bing has launched a new campaign to try and steal away some of Google's users, by offering a "blind comparison test," for users to pick the results they like better - those from Bing or those from Google. You can take the test here.
A Bing spokesperson tells WebProNews, "Although most people identify themselves as Google searchers, an independent study commissioned by Microsoft Corp. shows people chose Bing Web search results over Google nearly 2-to-1 in blind comparison tests. Given those findings, Bing decided it is time to let people see for themselves that there is a better option in search."
"Beginning today, America can click and choose which Web search results it prefers by participating in the Bing It On Challenge, accessible via BingItOn.com," he adds. "Based on research that indicates people prefer Bing Web search results over Google, Bing is inviting people nationwide to come and see for themselves with an online test designed to show that the quality of Bing’s Web search results has surpassed Google’s."
Bing put the following video out of one of their guys getting people to take the test on the street:
"These are just a few examples of the myriad algorithm changes that we’ve developed to enhance Bing over the years," says Dr. Harry Shum, Corporate Vice President, Bing R&D. "With all of these changes we’ve made some great progress in Bing search quality for our customers. You will notice we have released a fun, non-scientific tool for customers to see for themselves how far we’ve come. And while we know we still have lots of work to do, we think it’s long past time in our industry for a conversation on search quality. This conversation is what we hope to start with the Bing It On Challenge, and continue in the future to make sure we are delivering the quality experiences our customers deserve."
I'm pretty sure that conversation started a long time ago (especially in the search industry), but fair enough. I remember it was pretty big before the Google Panda update, especially, and pretty much continues on a daily basis. Remember when Blekko launched Three Engine Monte? No? That's OK. It's similar to the Bing It On Challenge, but includes Google, Bing and Blekko results. That's still operational.
Bing notes that the "side-by-side search off" of Bing It On excludes ads, Bing's snapshot and social search panes, and Google's Knowledge Graph. Wouldn't it make more sense to show them all the way the results would actually appear? Google thinks Knowledge Graph is one of its biggest advancements in search to date. For that matter, Bing thinks its social features make it a better search engine. Isn't it defeating the purpose of user preference to ignore user experience, focusing only on web search results, which Google is already showing less of on more and more results pages?
"Bing it On" will be promoted on TV and online, and will launch tonight during MTV's Video Music Awards. It will also be featured prominently in Microsoft retail stores in the coming months, and in "pop-up Bing it On challenge stations" across the country.