So I am going to warn you this is a rant. I just finished reading an article from CNN titled “How Bing is out-innovating Google“. After reading this article I was not convinced. The last time I used Bing, which was a few weeks ago, its was still really slow and delivering really bad search results. So as a user while I found the image backgrounds pretty it was simply a distraction for me. I do not see how Bing’s inovations are actually improving what I really need from a search engine: Fast and accurate search results to my search queries.
I also want to take issue with the background image that the Google page now allows users to set. I feel this feature is very different then what Microsoft provides with Bing. The Google image is a customization move that falls more into the category of personalizing the web experience. It is an image that I as the user set and I can turn it off when ever I want. The background image for Bing is a core feature that is part of the Bing differentiation strategy. Google’s core business remains search. The article also does nothing to mention the strides that Goole has made in Social Search or how it has improved personalized search results. These are the results that matter to me, the user.
I think this is because Google understands its “users” better. This shows with the fact that Google still holds 63% share of all search results on the web compared to the 12-13% that Bing does. I know that Bing has doubled its market share in over a year, but Microsoft has also spent a ton of money to artificially create this larger market share.
I actually want Bing to get better because as a user choice is important. However, I feel a proper analysis of the search giants will reveal that the real invocation lies in getting more relevant information to the user and not distracting them with just UI vodoo. Simple, elegant and accurate UI with the best search results will alway be the best choice.