“Search War” is heating up

Happy new year!

If I tell you that search is crucial for using the web and indeed the web’s growth and future, you’ll probably shrug and ask what’s new. Indeed, web search is almost becoming like our sixth sense and we rarely give it much thought. Looking for something? just search for it, or, Google it.

Fun fact: Google doesn’t want people to use their company name as a verb meaning search because they’re afraid that that verb will become detached from the company itself and that people will think of googling as the act of search irrespective of how that is done. That is, they are afraid that you’ll start googling on Yahoo or Bing :-). Case in point, they don’t want “google” to become like “xerox” or “kleenex”. More on genericized trademarks.

Last year, Microsoft introduced their new search engine, Bing, which is the first possible serious contender to Google… ever! This actually turned out to be good for us consumers; both search engines have started rolling out new features quickly. Competition is good. I think I can safely say that the state of web search is much better now in the beginning of 2010 than what it was in the beginning of 2009.

The marketing campaigns of both engines are perhaps a prime indicator of the heated competition. Google rarely advertise their products. Not only that, but Google Search was actually never advertised (afaik)! Imagine that, the most used web service on Earth was never advertised! Bing as the newcomer has been running commercials on the web and TV. Recently, Google started advertising their web search. I think this is quite shocking. I think everyone who has ever used the Internet knows about Google search, yet they are starting to advertise now. I first saw their ads on Hulu, and now I am encountering them in other places.

If you’re interested, here’s Google’s search campaign and here’s Bing’s search campaign.

  1. competition is good, for me i doubt i’ll ever change google as my homepage or search engine, but competition makes better products and fun ads, who’d hate that ! dabb7o ba3ad plz I say 😀

  2. Exactly my point. For me, I am willing to try new stuff, and I will end up sticking with whatever works best for me (so far bing hasn’t been too bad for me although I still use google sometimes). But in the end I think we will get better products out of it and fun commercials as you said.

  3. I love Google! I literally google just about everything, google google not google yahoo! I even sometimes wonder how could people live without Internet search? Seriously, to whome were these questions directed? Maybe internet search encouraged people to be curious and to learn more because it was jsut as easy as that to ask a question and find an answer.

    It’s not enough to have Google as a homepage, have the instant search books handy in the toolbar. This, along with the show desktop icon are my favorite lazy buttons

  4. Ola: Yeah! Google is awesome. I love internet search. I am sure people before the Internet were curious. After all they invented all the cool things and even went to the moon before the Internet took off.

    Actually, sometimes I wonder whether we, in the age of TV, are at more tendency to sit on the couch all day rather than go outside and inquire about the world (I know this is often the case with me). However, this is another discussion for another day 🙂

    But yes, Google and Internet search in general has made it a million times easier to find quick answers than before. I can’t survive without it 🙂

  5. i take google for granted. sadly though, its pretty rubbish for gcse maths. or maybe im just stupid. btw, i just found your website while googling for gaza. only just started a blog or id have loved to join in the blog for gaza campaign thing. i have blogged about it anyway though 🙂 check it out at my webpage http://www.thecoverfelloff.blogspot.com
    hope you like the banner

  6. I would have never expected Google needs to advertise its search engine division! It’s so engraved in our brains now it’s almost an instinct

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