Google vs Bing(&Yahoo;)
All industries require competition in order to stop a monopoly from taking place. So why is it then, that most of the Search Engine Marketing Industry seems to enjoy picking on Yahoo & Bing for competing with Google? It seems like every one of the major news sites for Search Engine Marketing are running articles about Yahoo and Bing’s failures without reason. I see this as a major injustice, Ask.com has less than 5% of the market share and yet we never hear anyone give their business plans or marketing tactics a hard time. And no one should, as Ask is a useful site that millions of people use and enjoy daily. Even our own Industry Top Experts, such as Danny Sullivan, seem to enjoy bringing negative points to the frontline about these two search giants. Well in light of this I decided to go against the grain and discuss how ludicrous it is to say that a Marketing Network that controls around 30% of its ENTIRE INDUSTRY is failing. According to Nielsen Net Ratings Google had around 65% of the searches and the Microsoft Network (Bing, Live MSN, Yahoo) had around 31% in August 2011. It is my goal to display the valid innovations that these Search Engines have brought out recently and to show that having even 15% of ANY industry’s market share is a GOOD thing not a bad one.
To explain that 30% is a good thing; lets take a look at 5 different industries. First we will look at the social networks, none of them can even dent Facebook’s massive usage and member base, similar to Google’s control over Search Engines, and yet we praise both LinkedIn and Twitter for having less than 30% of their markets. As a matter of fact no Social network besides Facebook and MySpace have EVER gone over 30cording to http://www.dreamgrow.com/top-
So as you can see having one Industry Giant and everyone else at around 30% or less is the standard, across the board. I personally have referenced this information on over 50 industries in my personal studies and have found that very few defy the rule and those that do are industries where they ALL have less than 20% of the Market Share. Such as the Internet Service Provider Market, SBC tops it with 15.4%. You can see this info at http://www.isp-
So according to the way people want you to think about Bing and Yahoo these businesses should be failing but they are not, they are hugely successful with small market shares. For example Wikipedia’s own entry on Yahoo! states clearly that as of the beginning of 2010 Yahoo had the largest market share of Display Advertising and at the time they had a smaller percentage of traffic to their website than they do even now with only around 10%. So obviously the success of this business is not going to be crushed because Google has better search technology, if that were true Yahoo! would have been gone before Bing even came into existence. As for all the cries about Bing spending such a huge advertising budget that is making them operate at a loss, in my previous article, Google vs Bing, I discussed this at greater length. Google.com can’t afford to operate at a loss by over advertising because it’s largest income IS Google Search. Bing.com on the other hand is one of the smallest parts of the Microsoft Corporation and because they own over a dozen billion dollar industries they can afford to spend massive amounts on advertising and not worry about it. If you take away Bing’s zealous ad campaign costs they would be operating in the positive hugely. So all of this hype about Bing & Yahoo being defeated by Google is just another shot in the Google vs. Bing war.
This “Cold War” of sorts has created a lot of neat new tools and modifications to old tools. As much as it tries to deny it, even Google sees the power that Bing has in its new innovations; it keeps making similar business moves immediately after Microsoft does. Microsoft integrates with Facebook and then Google immediately drops Google+. Microsoft has a flashy background image so Google adds the option of the same thing. Bing’s Maps get more detailed in rural areas of the world so Google takes new focus at those regions in its mapping efforts. Etc, etc the list goes on. As I said in Google vs. Bing #1 the war is merely in its build-
About the Author: Alexander Spencer is Head of Research & Development @ Ascension Web Presence Creation –