When Microsoft and Yahoo struck a deal that would see Microsoft’s Bing search engine power Yahoo’s search, Google came out as the biggest winner right now. The partnership between Microsoft and Yahoo is like having the chess club square off in the octagon against the fighters of the UFC. This will be mildly entertaining but let’s face it – the Microsoft-Yahoo deal isn’t going to do anything to Google’s dominance.
What the Microsoft-Yahoo deal does do is allow Google to say “We now have competition in the search market” and takes the focus away from what has basically become a Google monopoly in online search. Google will continue to be Google as it innovates and develops both products and services to the user community.
What does the Microsoft-Yahoo deal do for users? Not a whole lot. Remember Microsoft’s other search engines msn.com and live.com – both of which were terrible failures. Now they have bing.com. This is the best that Microsoft could come up with?
Personally I’ve used the Bing search engine and find that it returns completely irrelevant search results. For pages that I rank in the top 3 on Google, I don’t even rank for in Bing (or at least I couldn’t find it). Eight-percent of my traffic comes from organic searches and Google. Approximately five-percent comes from Bing and Yahoo, despite all my efforts to rank better in those search engines.
Google is well established in search and is gradually expanding its service offering in other areas. The Microsoft-Yahoo partnership does nothing to change that and until a major player steps in and is serious about competing with Google, Google will continue to dominate.
Yahoo jumped from using the Google search engine in 2004. The move was to allow “Yahoo to change the game in search” according to then senior vice-president at Yahoo – Jeff Weiner. Yet here we are 5 years later and Yahoo is striking a major deal with Microsoft to see it try to compete head-on with Google.
But where’s the benefit for Yahoo in this deal? They get access to a search engine that has been proven by many in the industry to be far less accurate than what the Google search engine is for returning relevant searches. Plus, with the advertising portion of the deal in place, Yahoo will sell ads on Bing that Microsoft will get 100% of the revenue for when these ads run on real estate outside of the Yahoo realm. Yahoo has no way to limit where these ads will be shown and when these ads are displayed in the Microsoft realm, Microsoft profits!
Google executives should be sitting and laughing at what has just transpired. The Microsoft-Yahoo deal has created competition in the online search market but this competition exists between Microsoft and Yahoo. Google is left to compete against a partnership that at its very core will be competing with one another for market share.
The Microsoft-Yahoo partnership is mostly hype and will never deliver on expectations. This is why the marketplace has shown its displeasure at the deal and why shares in both companies have fallen since its announcement. Google didn’t even have to do anything this time to reap benefits from this partnership-in-haste!