Is Bing Better than Google in Only Three Ways?

December 4, 2009

VenturedBeat caught my attention with its story “3 ways Bing is ahead of Google.” Whoa, Nelly! I thought had to be ahead of Google in just one way: online revenue. Not the pay to use, not the faux UX, and not the me-too approach to Web search. Yep, revenue. The Google has revenue because it has traffic, and it has advertisers and partners who want to tap into that traffic to make sales, get leads, or build brand. VentureBeat does not agree; to wit:

Google is groping its way toward this same change in what its audience wants, but you can almost feel the intellectual hesitation. I have to admit, I’m not sure I want Google to become more like Bing. I’d rather have my choice. But Bing hasn’t grabbed one-tenth of the world’s search engine traffic in just a few months by luck, or by advertising. They did it by figuring out correctly what people actually want.

I am no VC and not an MBA. Heck, I am an addled goose. But even I can see that Microsoft needs to beat Google in just one way—online revenue. Of course, that requires traffic, the ability to scale quickly and economically, and infrastructure that can handle various fancy math operations.

So Microsoft’s three better components have to add up to one real metric—revenue. The other stuff does not matter.

Stephen Arnold, December 4, 2009

I wish to disclose to the National Institute of Standards and Technology that I was not paid to simplify three small components into one big factored element. This earned me zero, which is darn close to the eight percent market share of a certain Web search system. Metrics are good.


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