News Analysis: Google Instant predictive search is a major issue for Microsoft's Bing search engine right now. Without the right response, Bing could find itself in a precarious position.
unveiled Instant Search Sept. 8
in an attempt to help users find their
desired search results more quickly. And although those who spend time
optimizing Websites might take issue with some of the improvements, the vast
majority of Web users will find a lot to like about Google Instant. It makes Google's
search quicker and far more efficient.
But at least one stakeholder definitely won't like the update Google has
made to its search platform: Microsoft. The software giant only recently
completed its integration of Bing and Yahoo, and now it's faced with a vastly
improved competitor that's already dominating that space. Microsoft has simply
had no time to breathe. And now, it will likely have even less time. Google
Instant is proving to be a vast improvement on other search services. And it's
likelier than ever that Microsoft and its Bing search technology could have
major difficulty competing.
Here's a look at why Google Instant could be the first step toward Microsoft
1. Google Instant works well
First and foremost, it's important to keep in mind that Google Instant works
extremely well. In fact, it fulfills its promise of getting users to their
desired destinations sooner. That's not a good thing for Bing. If Instant hadn't
worked, Bing would have had an opening it could exploit. But it works. And that
means most users will look at Bing as the hobbled alternative.
2. Google was already ahead
Let's not forget that the
onus isn't on Google to catch up to Bing.
Quite the contrary, it's
Microsoft's job to catch up to Google. With Google Instant now being available
to Web users, the gap that Bing needs to make up is bigger than ever. And
considering it couldn't close that gap before, what makes anyone think it can
close it now?
3. Speed means everything in search
Speed is the difference between success and failure in search. Speed is also
the reason why Google was so successful in the first place. And now, with the
help of Instant, Google has easily bested the competition again by giving users
search results far more quickly than in the past. Bing is now slow. And once
users realize that, they might not go for Microsoft's option.
4. Microsoft needs to play catch-up
If nothing else, Google Instant has proven that Microsoft is now playing
catch-up. Admittedly, it was doing that before. But now it's really
trying to catch up to Google. Exactly how Microsoft will respond to Instant is
anyone's guess. But over the next couple of months, expect the software giant
to hunker down and try to come up with something to match Google's offering.