With a Bing, Not a Whimper

Published on July 1, 2009
by John Paczkowski

You can’t overtake a market in a month, particularly one dominated by Google. But you can certainly chip away a small foothold. Which is what Microsoft managed to do with its new search engine, Bing, last month. According to StatCounter, Microsoft’s share of the market grew to 8.23 percent in June, up from the 7.8 percent share it held prior to Bing’s launch.


Now, a one percent increase in market share isn’t a spectacular achievement, but it is meaningful growth. More so since Google posted a slight decline in share in June, its third in as many months.

Google still rules search in the U.S., but Bing appears to be making some modest headway. “Steady if not spectacular might be the best way to describe performance to date,” said Aodhan Cullen, CEO of StatCounter.

Which is fine. Particularly when you’re coming from as far behind as Microsoft (MSFT). Of course, as I’ve said before, early successes like these are driven as much by marketing as by technological prowess and positive user experience. And right now, Bing’s got between $80 million and $100 million dollars behind it. But those dollars will only last so long.

And as Google (GOOG) CEO Eric Schmidt likes to point out, you really can’t expect to buy your way into the search market. “You don’t just buy it with ads,” Schmidt told Fox Business earlier this week. “You earn it, and you earn it customer by customer, search by search, answer by answer.”

Perhaps that’s exactly what Microsoft is doing here with Bing.

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