Web search is the entryway to the web for many, and ads based on those searches are the subtle tax for entry. Google has made their entire company based on search ads and still sees the majority of their revenue from them, but Microsoft and Yahoo have been offering some stiff competition lately. Microsoft’s search share continues to grow and eat into Google’s massive majority share, and 2014 was a good year for the Yahoo and Bing search team.
In Microsoft’s post about their review of 2014, it was very clear that Bing is still gaining ground in the US and across the world. Another big point Microsoft highlighted was that Bing searchers were bigger spenders, and this means advertising on Yahoo or Bing could result in a better return on the advertising investment. Microsoft was also keen to point out their ad network can reach 167 million unique web searchers in the US alone, which is 29% of the search market.
While Google still remains top dog when it comes to online advertising, Bing is continuing to prove themselves a persistent threat to Google’s massive revenue stream of ad dollars. Looking at the whole picture, Bing is offering businesses and individuals choice when it comes to search and ads. One big company holding such a large share of search isn’t what makes a healthy competitive environment for consumers. Even if Bing still needs to catch up, it is good there is another heavy weight to keep Google from having free reign.
Microsoft has also detailed areas they are going to focus on after receiving feedback from customers. These are areas where Microsoft will offer more training and support world wide, more engagement, and more fun with contests and promotions to get customers excited. Microsoft has a history of focusing too heavily on the US and ignoring the rest of the world, hopefully 2015 will be the beginning of a more globally minded company.Further reading: Advertising, Bing, Microsoft