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Microsoft Concealing True Market Share Potential?

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4 users commented

If you open up clicktracks, it splits MSN & Live search as 2 separate engines.

It’s a very confused mess. I still refer to their Instant Messaging software as ‘MSN’ even though that’s now ‘windows live messenger’ (who knows – it’s probably something else by now, I don’t care I use Pidgin anyway).

It’s all the more bizarre when you consider you’ll overhear people using the word ‘google’ as a verb – it’s that short and snappy and identified with search that people will say – ‘I’ll just google that!’ There’s no danger of ‘Microsoft Live Search’ entering the public consciousness in a similar way.

Microsoft’s search strategy has just relied on their monopoly of desktop operating systems/browsers to build awareness, that may get initial traffic but it won’t help them keep visitors who will quickly switch back to using their preferred engine – Google.

It also reminds me of this excellent article at AListApart which talks about the importants of aesthetics in building usable products:

http://www.alistapart.com/articles/indefenseofeyecandy/

The article references a study found at – http://ist.psu.edu/faculty_pages/jjansen/academic/pres/chi2007/jansen_branding_of_search_engines.pdf – I found the following comment particularly interesting:

“…users judge the relevancy of identical search results from different search engines based on the brand…Participants in the study indicated that the results from Google and Yahoo were superior to identical results found through Windows Live or a generic search engine.”

said Steven Nash on May 7th, 2009 at 2:59 pm

If MSN and Live are being measured as separate engines, that is indeed confusing. Or at the least it will under represent Microsoft’s share of search.

The article you list was pretty interesting by the way. Makes a real change to have educated comment rather than a quick link that I simply delete.

said Dixon Jones on May 12th, 2009 at 7:04 am

Now I’d like to think that Microsoft read my earlier reply and thought – ‘yes Nashie’s right! What we need is a brand that can be used as a verb’, mmmm maybe not but still I thought this an appropriate link to post here, here comes Microsoft’s latest search engine brand: ‘Bing’

said Steven Nash on May 28th, 2009 at 9:01 pm

“Bing”.

So glad to See them consolidating their brands by starting a new one!

I’m sure it has been all thought through this time.

said Dixon Jones on May 28th, 2009 at 9:14 pm

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