What’s New with Bing

Search engine and SEO news tends to be dominated by Google, but while they are the biggest engine in the world, they aren’t the only one. Microsoft’s Bing has been making a name for itself, and earning loyal users, since its 2009 release.  Bing is hoping to chip away at Google by gearing efforts towards two areas that have always been Google’s weaknesses: social and spam.

From the offset, Bing sought to provide a different, and more “user-friendly” experience, which they believe Google does not with its “10 blue links” setup. The smaller search engine has also been active in social media, partnering with Facebook to incorporate users’ links to search results. The two companies extended this, and Bing searchers can now see results from Facebook users who aren’t their friends.

A Microsoft spokesperson says, “Online, people are increasingly looking to their friends for advice and opinions, and search is a place many people go to complete tasks, making it a natural place for this information to come together….people can expect to see more from Bing and Facebook in the future.” Like what? One feature they are working on would leverage Facebook data for geo-targeted ads, including mobile ads.

Now, on to spam. Spam is the bane of Google’s existence. While they have a powerful leader in Matt Cutts, spam is still a common part of Google searchers’ experience. Google encourages users to report spam to help them tweak their algorithms and improve quality. Bing is reportedly considering one-upping Google by offering an incentive or “small reward” to those who report search spam. Bing has not said if they will, in fact, be doing this but it might be a good way to crowd-source anti-spam efforts.

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