Yahoo and Bing – Unite!
October 17, 2010
With the much anticipated Yahoo and Bing merge finally underway, we are still left to question how the two search engines will differ, if at all, with regards to their organic search results. In mid-September we really began to feel the effects of the merger as Yahoo traffic either jumped or took a dive, depending on how well that particular site was ranking on Bing. Yes – it seems that Bing.com’s algorithm has prevailed as Yahoo made a quick switch to match Bing’s organic search results (ok, “quick” might be a bit of a stretch since we’ve been anticipating this for about a year now). Anyway, just when we thought we had it all figured out, it is now a month later and we are beginning to experience slight differences between organic rankings on the two search engines. So the question of the day is – should we expect that Yahoo and Bing will yield relatively different search results, despite the fact that Yahoo is now being powered by Bing?
The answer is yes. The Associated Press recently released an article discussing this topic more in depth and confirms that even with the merger the two search engines will provide slightly different results. “The 10-year search partnership between Yahoo and Microsoft still allows them to cook up different recipes for displaying the results” (Associated Press via Yahoo News – September 29, 2010). Each search engine has always provided a different style and focus as they display their search results and they will each continue to maintain their unique qualities. For example, Bing.com places a high emphasis on results that are more visually appealing (i.e. photo clips and video results) while Yahoo focuses more on the information at hand. While the results are likely to remain very similar, it is important to keep in mind that they will not always be identical as each search engine will strive to maintain its individuality.
When it comes down to it, Yahoo and Bing are still competitors and they will remain true to their core values and the individual approach they each take to displaying their search results. To make their results 100% identical would eventually take away from the need for two search engines, defeating the purpose of the merge altogether. Ultimately, the main goal of this unlikely pairing is to help Bing and Yahoo stay in the game and to avoid being totally crushed by the search engine super power that is, the one.. the only – GOOGLE. So now the question is – will working together give them enough power to steal some of Google’s thunder? Only time can tell..