After struggling through the majority of the last decade, Microsoft seems to have got its mojo back in the last 3-4 years. Microsoft’s troubles were as much a result of its internal inadequacies as the growth of its competitors such as Google and Apple. As Microsoft struggled with innovation, products such as the iPad, iPhone and the iPod, charmed customers around the world. Microsoft not only failed to keep pace with these new innovations, it also failed to protect its dominance in critical markets such as the Internet browser besides other. However, things seem to be changing for this software giant when we begin to analyze its new product offerings and the strategies behind them.
Microsoft released Bing as an online search engine in June 2009. Google continues to dominate this segment however Microsoft’s strategy in this segment is very interesting. First, Bing’s integration with Facebook is a huge win for Microsoft. Facebook will help improve Bing’s search results by leveraging its social connections. Microsoft has cleverly figured out a way to integrate Facebook into the Bing search engine and hence presents a huge advantage over Google by being able to bring personality to its search. Moreover, Bing has built on this integration with Facebook with the ability to tag friends in searches.
Percentage of US Searches among leading search engine providers| Domain| February 2011| March 2011| Month-over-month Change| Google.com| 66.69| 64.42| -3|
Bing Powered Search| 28.48| 30.01| 5|
Search.yahoo.com| 14.99| 15.69| 5|
Bing.com| 13.49| 14.32| 6|
Source: Experian Hitwise
Second, Bing may take a long time to beat Google in Search however; the Bing strategy is aimed at hurting Google where it hurts most. Google earns about 96% of its revenues through its advertising programs most of which is driven by its search engine. Currently Bing (along with Yahoo) own 30% of the search market share,...