Microsoft’s Bing is Here. Let’s Check It Out
Update: As the day has progressed, more people have experimented with Bing, and those who were already experimenting with it have experimented more. Not surprisingly, there have been flaws discovered. More criticism has surfaced.
While, Bing is techincally still in preview status, I have to assume they felt it was pretty much ready for prime time. After all, scheduled launch was only two days away anyway. Anyhow, here are a couple more articles on Bing observations worth looking at:
– Search Google and Yahoo from Bing
Original article: If you head to Bing.com, you can go ahead and start searching with Microsoft’s new search engine, despite the announcement that it wasn’t to become available to all until June 3rd. The company did say that it would be gradually rolling out until then, but it appears to be fully launched. Live.com is even redirecting to Bing now. Tried Bing yet? Share your first impression of the search engine.
So, let’s give it a try…
What you search for determines what you see on the left-hand side. If I search for WebProNews, I will just see my search history. If I search for a city like Lexington, I will see the search history, but above it is a list of related searches , and above that are links for Jobs, Airport, Hotels, Restaurants, Apartments, and Images.
When I search for a band like Every Time I Die for example, I see the search history and related searches, but at the top it has links for Images, Tabs, Lyrics, Biography, Interview, Merchandise, and videos. Hmmm…Merchandise.
I wonder what happens when I search for a business. Let’s try Best Buy. Here we get the standard history and related searches, but above that is Catalog, Appliances, Coupons, Careers, and Customer Service. Now that’s interesting. The coupons part is especially interesting considering the increasing popularity of online coupon seeking.
Next, I tried a restaurant – Zaxby’s (a location just opened up down the street, and I happen to know that they offer online coupons). Here the top links are Menu, Franchise, Jobs, Recipes, and Catering. Coupons does not make an appearance in this section, but it appears as the top related search. I would find a locations link helpful in a case like this, but who am I to criticize when "Zaxby’s Locations" is the second natural search result, just under zaxbys.com?
If I search for "Zaxby’s, Lexington KY" I get a familiar map and local listings result at the top, and the only link (other than my search history) in the left column is Local, which gives me a full local listing.
Bing’s natural results are divided according to the links that appear in the left-column. It’s an interesting approach to search. Google recently added the new "search options" feature, which similarly allows people to control their results from the left-hand side, but the approach itself is quite different.
After using it for a short amount of time, I have to say that Bing is not bad (at first glance anyway). There’s going to be a lot of discoveries made for a while, as people all over the world experiment and uncover new features and ways of searching. It’s certainly worth keeping an eye on. People are already finding new tips and tricks.
Danny Sullivan at Search Engine Land makes a good point. "Some of these aren’t unique to Bing; other search engines offer them, as well. But one good part about the Bing launch is that as people explore it, they’ll rediscover things that search engines generally can do but which are often overlooked or not realized by even tech-savvy people," he says.
Bing’s going to be getting a lot of attention in the immediate future, but the question is are people going to abandon the familiar Google search in favor of Bing use, or are they just going to play around with it, say, "hmm, that’s cool," and then go back to the search engine they’ve been using for years. So far, Bing seems to be getting a pretty positive reaction.
It should be noted that Bing’s rollout on mobile devices is not complete just yet. Bing offered the following Tweet this morning:
What do you think of Bing? Does it have a shot at cutting significantly into Google’s search market share? Will you use it over Google? In addition to Google? Tell us what you think.