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Bing revamps its search page with much cleaner design (techcrunch.com)
61 points by error54 1577 days ago | hide | past | web | 52 comments | favorite

It's funny, I've noticed myself using the links in the "cluttered left rail" an awful lot lately. Particularly the "past month" / "past year" links; for so much tech stuff anything over a year old is just not useful. It pertains to previous versions of software/hardware, or to services that have changed their feature set in the meantime.

A couple questions:

1) Do you click the sponsored links in search results? 2) Do you run adblock?

Maybe you and I (and anyone else reading this board) are not the target market for Bing. I don't watch Wheel of Fortune either, but that seems to have a strong market.

The less links/buttons on a page to confuse my mother the more likely I'll send her to that page. As long as she can easily find what she is looking for (and is less likely to install another browser toolbar)

Here are some searches that worked perfectly fine for me in Bing and didn't need any sidebar filters:

http://www.bing.com/search?q=celtics+score (shows the box score)

http://www.bing.com/search?q=newton%2C+ma+taxi (same map/list of taxi companies as google)

http://www.bing.com/search?q=who+won+american+idol (I think Bing has better results than Google for this)

http://www.bing.com/search?q=movie+times (fandango outranked Bing's list of movies, while Google puts their list ahead of all search results)

I use it as well but I think it's a bit of a crutch for the search algorithm. The search algorithm should weigh age when ranking items in a domain where information ages quickly.

I agree. I have been using the filters a ton, for images as well. Cleaner design doesn't exactly mean better, the filters are conventient as hell.

I know some people like to hate on googles personalized search results too, but to me they are pretty much perfect.

I use it all the time. I'm almost always interested only in stuff written over the past year or month. I even wish Google made the default results the ones over the "past year". But I guess they think that will hurt relevancy.

Here's the problem with using a not-Google search engine: any time I have trouble finding something, I feel compelled to switch back to Google to make absolutely sure that it really is that hard to find. So while I've tried to use other search engines by default, it just ends up being more efficient to start with Google.

Wow. A couple of side-by-side searches, and I've switched to Bing to try it out for the next few days.

I've got really tired of Google's cruft, and tried DuckDuckGo several times, but the results were just never as good (and I missed integrated image and news searches, both of which I use heavily). Bing's results seem much closer to what I expect.

That would be really bad, because DDG is a search engine on top of the Bing API.

Well, boy do I feel dumb.

It's not just Bing results. They use their results instead of running their own content crawlers, but they use some own algorithms for ranking, spam filtering and so on. Also, Bing is not their only source, if I'm not mistaken.

I wonder what percentage of ddg results come from bing, is this information public?

I wonder how DDG are going to respond to the proposed changes to the Bing API pricing

Maybe its just me but when I last tried DDG I found it to be awfully slow compared to Google and Bing.

I can second this data point.

I love DDG, and tried it out as my default search engine for about a month, but just got tired of how slow it was compared to Google and switched back to Google as my default (on DDG I found myself adding "!google" about 30% of the time anyway). If DDG was faster, I'd probably still be using it.

Try Blekko.com

I noticed this tonight as well. I never thought Bing would be the "clean, simple" result page, while Google was overcome with cruft. Absolutely amazing.

Am I the only one who is bothered by how similar the Bing results look to Google results?

To illustrate my point, one of these is Bing and one is Google: http://d.pr/i/4KA5

Does this not cross an ethical line?

Your UI is not generally the thing you should be innovating with. The purpose of a UI is to be intuitive. The most intuitive thing for a user is the thing they already know.

I work in game development, and this kind of thing comes up a lot. For example, if your going to make a console FPS, you should make damn sure your controls are as similar as possible to Call of Duty and when people make the user interface for an MMO these days, they should probably start with whatever WoW's UI is doing.

When you are looking at a decision like "What colour should I make these item rarities" you might think it's a good idea to change them just to be different from a competitor, but why change for the sake of change?

UI improvements can certainly be made, but you have to balance them against familiarity, which is a huge factor that shouldn't be discounted. Remember that in any product, the UI is a means to an end, not the thing itself. If Bing wants to innovate, they should do so by providing better search results.

Yahoo is also very similar. It's been this way for years.

The colours are literally almost the same! Such a shameless rip-off.

"cluttered left rail" ... sure, cluttered with things that get a helluva lot of use & happen to be located in a very convenient place.

And those options don't exist anywhere on Bing... unless you have to be logged or something strange.

not sure if this was intended as sarcasm, so I logged in just to check, no they dont,

they have related searches (in bold), search history & narrow by region down the left...

all but the last go in the "cruft" category imho,

google have the different search types, location, region, chronological stuff then "more", no idea how much customisation they do though ... i'm not a google-fanboy but at least they are all useful _to me_ & better designed

Is it just me or is this better than anything Google's ever had? (both before and after Search Plus Your World)

If Bing can do a better job with long tail queries, I could definitely see myself recommending to family to use Bing.

Bing seems to be becoming more and more like the clean and simple Google I liked.

I can see on the UI side definitely! dejavu Google a few years back ... but how about search quality? I have tried using Bing, but 99.9% I'll be back on Google after a few iterations of using different keywords.

Actually the Tech crunch screenshot does not do much justice. The new bing search result page is really clean and appealing (in addition to search results).

A friend of mine who runs what I suspect is nothing other than a content farm, told me last year that he doesn't do SEO for Bing - simply because it doesn't fetch him money. More precisely, his clients want SEO for google ... I suspect the reality is much different, as many IE users would stick to using it. Does anyone know how lucrative Bing is on the SEO market, and how Bing handles such efforts?

It's not lucrative, but for most people, optimizing for Google = optimizing for Bing and most other search engines as well. There's really not much difference - maybe you need to come up with a different sitemap, but that's it.

The traffic most sites get from bing (or any alternative search engine) is so low that it doesn't make sense to optimize seo for anything other than google. Looking at my own sites, Bing is about 2% of search traffic

Nice redesign but the results just aren't good enough. For some searches they match Google but for just as many they fail.

e.g. I searched for a GitHub repo I created. On Bing I got one results. A blog post I wrote about it. On Google I got 77 results including the GitHub project, GitHub Wiki, blog post, and tweets about it. I've also noticed in using Bing that when I type in programming questions I get blog posts. On Google I get StackOverflow which is what I'm usually looking for. I think I'm going to give Bing a try for a few days though exclusively and see how it really compares.

Competing on design is great especially as Google's search has got so cluttered but the results are still the most important thing.

Look at github.com/robots.txt and you'll see there is no bingbot listed there. I'm not sure if this affects the result in your query, but it might well just be a case of bing respecting a robots.txt file.

Actually, it has msnbot listed, and according to this http://www.bing.com/community/site_blogs/b/webmaster/archive...

The bingbot will respect msnbot permissions when it doesn't see bingbot, unless of course github has explicitly blocked unrecognized user agents too.

I had not used Bing for a while so I tried a simple search for "hacker news" to compare the results with Google.

Bing: http://www.bing.com/search?q=hacker+news&go=&qs=n...

Google: https://www.google.com/search?sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&#...

I guess I will stick with Google... I like the redesign though.

On one hand people complain that google does to much guessing to what you mean with your query, in the other people complain when they get to much control via the left bar..

Have Microsoft revamped bing to prepare it for sale?

Bingo! I heard a rumour it might be Facebook.

It's strange that Microsoft would want to off load Bing. I know Facebook supposedly have some decent search capability already. Maybe Bing would complement a Facebook type OS?

And Facebook seems close with Baidu too - phone or launching fb in China, whatever it is. Would be surprised if Facebook buys it actually ...

Why is it strange? It's a huge money loser for them.

It cost them $5.5B between 2009 and Sep 2011.



The two look almost identical. In fact bing now looks more like google, minus a left rail. I actually find google left menu pretty useful.

Seems bloat and clutter AdBlock filter for Bing looks like this now,



It seems it doesn't work in India. It works if you set your country to US.

I am going to give Bing a try, as I noticed that loading a Google page puts an extra ~10% CPU usage on Firefox ever since they integrated that Google+ crap.

Bing is good. But few things I really really miss in them are convenient searches like:

55 f in c

1200 USD in JPY

25 liters in gallons


In Google these give me the answer. In Bing they give me links.

Hm...maybe these answers aren't enabled in your country/region. All those searches gave me answers on Bing set to en-us

The currency conversion works when using the .UK site but the others dont.

I must admit I also miss from Google the define: word but these little things are not enough for me to ever go back to Google!

Anyone from Bing team to explain the shift, why focus on these particular set (changes)?

1. We're choosing search engines now because of appearance?

2. User styles.

3. If you don't like the options Google gives you or it annoys you to see them on the side, okay. But blaming it on social search is disingenuous. Social search added a single toggle button that is off in the corner away from results.

The left search bar stuff is standard fare and has been there for ages.

Appearance is everything in information graphic design - and that's what a search engine results page is. It's an interface between the raw data and my brain, feeding it with information. A better design increases bandwidth and decreases latency. Both of those make the viewer subjectively happier for a wide variety of reasons.

So yes, appearance is an extremely good reason to switch search engines.

I'm flabbergasted at this. Either one of two things are happening here:

1. The results returned by Google and Bing are equally good, and so the only thing remaining is the "noise" on the page.

2. The "noise" in the column is so distracting that you are willing to go elsewhere regardless of the quality of the content that you are... "able" to see?

The search results themselves are formatted, basically identically. The only difference is Google has a bit more stuff up top and on the left side on Google. Just set the origin of your vision to be the div containing the search results.

Or take 10 seconds and install a user style. It will take a fraction of the time you spent flipping back to Google to redo a search. (At least that's been my own experience with trying to switch).

Additionally, in regards to visual bandwidth, the Google results are tighter (yet still comfortable), don't have "Related Links" shoved into the middle of search results, and the site (map) links under the result don't take up an enormous space like they do in Bing (they more than double the vertical height of the result).

(as a side note, it appears to be completely impossible to do an "advanced" (date/language-constrained) search with Bing. If you guys don't use these options on Google, you absolutely must try them. They are invaluable when doing any non-trivial query)

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