Bing Foundations Finally Complete, Says Microsoft

Scott Lambert

Over the past six years, Bing has been fighting not only to stay ahead of its rivals but also to effectively develop its own internal foundations. Now, according to Dave O’Hara of Microsoft's Applications and Services Group, its underlying infrastructure is complete and it may finally be ready to stand on its own two feet.

Crucially, it has been this ongoing investment in infrastructure that has kept Bing running at a loss for so long, requiring big subsidies from Microsoft just to stay afloat. As it can now run and maintain its search engine facilities independently, Microsoft can concentrate on other parts of its product range and any profits Bing starts to accrue can be filtered into growth.

Despite rumors that Microsoft had thought of selling Bing when it reached this stage, O’Hara says that such a move would not make sense. Bing is too closely integrated into a number of Microsoft products – from Windows 8 to the Xbox – and is likely to be important to the Windows 8.1 phone due to be released next year. If a new owner were to take it in a fresh direction, leading to the development of incompatibilities, this could cause major headaches for the software giant and potentially reduce the value of its product range; in fact, as well as hanging on to the search engine, Microsoft plans to embed it in further products and significantly increase its visibility.

If anything is going to shake up the search engine market, this is it. Marketers would be well advised to start tailoring their campaigns – and especially their central websites – to improve Bing rankings instead of automatically focusing on Google and hoping that the rest falls into place. Bing has been keeping pace for a long time without the option to push hard for growth. It has seen its market share slowly increase and it may become profitable if it can reach around 23% market share. When this happens Bing will be able to start reinvesting, potentially giving Google a run for its money.

This raises interesting questions about Yahoo, which, in its partnership with Bing, has seen its own revenues drop just as Bing’s have grown. According to Microsoft, everything is amicable between the two and past disputes have been resolved; however, Yahoo has been notably silent on the matter. It remains to be seen how their relationship will develop once Bing has the stamina to go it alone.

Scott Lambert

Written by Scott Lambert

For 35 years, Scott has been at the forefront of digital transformation and how it is effectively applied in businesses and organizations to market, sell, and support customers and members more successfully and cost effectively. Scott is President and Co-Founder of Xcellimark, an award-winning digital marketing agency serving clients throughout the U.S., Canada, Central America, and Germany. Xcellimark helps businesses succeed through the implementation of its unique digital marketing and sales approach specifically designed to meet their specific goals and objectives. Scott’s marketing, sales, and operations experience have included key management positions at industry leaders including AT&T, iXL (now SapientRazorfish), eSchool Solutions (now TalentED), and BellSouth, where he led the product development, marketing efforts, and market launch of, the second public ISP developed in the U.S. Scott is the author of articles highlighted on leading online publishers such as LinkedIn, Business 2 Community, and he was recently featured by LinkedIn in the Entrepreneur magazine article on “No Time for Marketing? Hire a Freelancer.” His engaging personality and wealth of real-world and business experience make Scott a frequently requested speaker. Some of his engagements include being the featured speaker in a series of Orlando Business Journal seminars on Digital Marketing, speaking at the WSI London conference, and at international conferences in Belize. Scott has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Mississippi and a Master’s of Science in the Management of Technology from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech). Scott has been active in global mission efforts and is a board member of Global Teams, a Christian outreach organization. He lives in Winter Springs, FL with his wife Nancy and dog Sadie.

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