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Microsoft Launches New Era in MS Search
msndude




msg:1538920
 10:18 pm on Nov 11, 2004 (gmt 0)

Continued From: [webmasterworld.com...]



Wow! Lot’s of excitement. Thanks for all of the feedback. We just want to address a few of the topics that came up.

What is the beta? As WebGuerilla has pointed out the beta is an evolution of our Technology Preview. As you can tell we made major enhancements to the user interface and added a bunch of new features. We still have work to do, however, to get [search.msn.com...] to be able to use our new algorithmic search results that are available at [beta.search.msn.com...] .

How does one get into the results? All of our web results are generated algorithmically so you cannot buy your way into the index. We will not try and teach site optimization to you guys – assume you have that covered :) If you want to submit your URL to us you can do that at [beta.search.msn.com...] .

Also regarding relevance, there has been some speculation on some online forums about MSNBot using Google search result pages to build our index. Let us set the record straight – that is simply not true. We respect robots.txt and as a result we will not crawl Google’s search result pages.

With regards to site availability that is something we are continuously working on. Oshoma Momoh, a General Manager in the MSN Search team, posted a blurb about this on the MSN Search blog -- [blogs.msdn.com...] .

Finally some folks have asked why we don’t just turn this on for all users right now? We love the words of encouragement, however, we have a number of bugs that we need to fix and we need to make sure that we can run the service with great performance and deliver high quality results. We will get there.

Please keep the feedback and constructive criticism coming – we appreciate all of it.

- msndude (msd)

 

TinkyWinky




msg:1539010
 10:51 pm on Nov 12, 2004 (gmt 0)

we double our payment

Not unless MSN is twice the price of Yahoo!

If you are paying Yahoo already, then as they provide MSN with the results that people click on you are therefore simply paying Yahoo for the traffic from MSN also. So you can't be paying double.

Sorry to be pedantic about it! :)

StupidScript




msg:1539011
 11:08 pm on Nov 12, 2004 (gmt 0)

TinkyWinky, you are right. This is why I'm a developer and not a financier! Thanks for the math correction. It really does help me feel more relaxed. While we will need to commit substantial cash to more ad accounts, at least the click cost will not double, as you said.

Hoping msndude will give us a post about the value MSN expects to add.

I wonder how well their click fraud detection will work?

Rollo




msg:1539012
 12:14 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Be the National Widget Organization vs Podunk Widget Information Company.
Yeah, I guess that would do it...

Most of the sites in the categories that I monitor are pretty much interchangable... all selling the same widget realted services. The best webmasters walk away wealthy... there it's nice to see different results in G,Y, and MSN.

msndude




msg:1539013
 1:32 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

With regards to how often we are on the forum -- we will try and post to the site as much as possible. Hope you’ll forgive our scarce posting of late; we’ve been a little busy. :-)

We value the good discussion so we are not just going to jump in the fray for the heck of it, but we hear you that 15 posts in 6 months is not exactly earth shattering.

StupidScript and dertyfern – this is a good discussion.

We think it is very important to separate out the advertising side of the business from the algorithmic search side of the business. Both have the same goal which is to answer user’s questions; however, one has been paid for so we will always call out this distinction. The advertising on [beta.search.msn.com...] are ads from Overture and from Microsoft’s own Sponsored Sites program. So for advertisers there will be no change. The ads that you purchase on Overture will continue to be syndicated to MSN Search.

Does that help?

- msndude (msd)

econman




msg:1539014
 1:39 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't follow the reasoning that it will cost twice as much once MSN is on its own. If you are paying per click, the cost will be the same, you'll just send the money a different route.

A more interesting issue is whether MSN will emulate yahoo/Overture, which creates artificial scarcity for its ad space, engendering bidding wars, or if it will emulate Google, which offers a much larger number of ad positions, and thus the bids tend to be lower. (I realize the discrepancy varies widely, depending on the KW), but Google's minimum is half of Overture's, and on many words the top bid is less than half of the top bid on Overture.

Google isn't necessary making less money, however. They make sure all the ads that are running on their pages have high CTRs, so they end up selling more clicks per impression at a lower price per click.

I'd love to know which way MSN is going to head, or if they have even decided.

pontifex




msg:1539015
 2:12 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi there,

amazing to see a thread starting with the major player and the major opponent in the field. It's like worldchampionship in soccer... take the crunchies and the beer and watch :-)

But seriously: the well behaved "thumbs up" from GG is nice, but I really doubt that fighting for any market against competition is a "nice game"... behind the scenes it is bloody, it is unfair and every player will fight to win.

In my personal approach in life, I prefer the little shops, the niche boutique with the friendly stuff... Google WAS that way, but I doubt they will be able to contiue to be it. And now they have a marketing problem. If they can not find services to bind HUGE amounts of customers to the company, MS will take these potential customers with the final release of Longhorn.

I say, if everything fails (like good products :-) they will buy that market. The mass of spontanous searchers will take the Coca Cola in the end, not the Pepsi.

Microsoft is excellent in operating a business for profit, and if it will be necessary to provide golden results to succeed, MS will add as much dollars as it takes to turn that index into pure platinum.

I personally think, that Microsoft has invented the "copy-improve-succeed model" before the Japanese finally got to it (ask Steve) and I think they will do that with SEARCH as well.

Google has the advantage of already having a large database of active webmasters (AdSense) and a large base of advertisers (AdWords). But if they loose the users, that is not enough.

The index of MS today is crap, but not too far away from OK and from there they will take it to GOOD within 6 month - it's still called beta. For Longhorn it will be in a very competitive state, so give it 1.5 years to evolve.

They send MSNdude to scan the terrain and take back the mood - now they will improve.

I remember some posts here well from last year: ...took them 5 years...MS will get that never done...etc.

As little as I like them, as much I do trust the biggest software powerhouse in the world to make it.

By the way: the index I saw today would be excellent for me, but I doubt it will stay that way :-)

just 2 pennies from a man with two hats,
P!

itloc




msg:1539016
 3:35 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hi MSNDude

The beta rocks.

Regards

itloc

bears5122




msg:1539017
 5:43 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

msndude,

I think my biggest concern with any search engine is whether the results are purposely degraded to enhance the CTR of their ads. Google clearly does this and has gotten very bad since the IPO.

We all know Microsoft is run by businessmen and has shareholders to take care of. Is this search engine being built with the intentions of producing the best results possible, or to generate ad revenue by poor results?

I feel you are in a very good position if you can put together a solid search engine. Google doesn't provide good results anymore and Yahoo! has always been average. I have a feeling with the work you guys are doing, this SE could finally be a truly good search engine.

Essex_boy




msg:1539018
 7:51 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Just one question. Why has it taken MSN so long to do this?

bts111




msg:1539019
 9:28 am on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

All looking very good for me.

Keep up the good work MSN ; )

submitx




msg:1539020
 12:15 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I congratulate MSN for job well done. I see very little spam for most keywords. I don't think it is possible for any search engine to be 100% clean of spam, so you guys that think there is a lot of junk should relax. Even Google has a lot of spam ... try a few adult or casino related terms and compare MSN to Google. I see a lot more top level domains in MSN Top 10 and more doorway pages/subpages in Google in the Top 10. As someone metnioned before, it appears that MSN is giving more importance to the main page of the site. This is a good thing.

BTW, I just discovered another bomb. I can't post the exact term as that's against the guidlines, but hopefully you can guess from this, type "a**l s*x" and look at #1. Well maybe MSN has a little more work to do.

kahuna




msg:1539021
 1:13 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Ahhh.... here we go again...
m-s-n has taken all the spam out of the top 1-10, 11-20 results (for my relevant search). Which is good thing.
But couldn't goo-gle do this for the last 5 years? Is this a hidden secret that m-s-n has developed? or have the cloakers and manipulators just not gotten hold of the "holy grail" m-s-n has deep within the confines of dark and dimmly lit stone towers?

So for now, 'cause we are ranking well, and the redundancy and spam has been removed....
We dub thee algorithym....
"SirWilliamWallace."
of course you all know I'll be sceaming and calling it...
"Longshanks," before the night is yet long.
And then after months of frustration and getting back to just churning out content....
"King Bruce."

HitProf




msg:1539022
 1:25 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

It's funny to see some Google AdSense scraper site come up on MSN while Google doesn't even rank it. It's being served PSA's btw.

pontifex




msg:1539023
 3:15 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

kahuna is right, the SERPS have been cleaned more since yesterday, most of the high ranking SPAM just vanished today for me too... guessed that :-) my old cloakings ranked tooooo high :-)

P!

phpdude




msg:1539024
 4:19 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

The quality depends on your search.

From where I'm sitting, these are the most pathetic results I've seen in quite a while.

Google directory listings are actually showing up in top spots. What, MSN can't find their own so they use Googles!

I've ranked very well in MSN and the results still suck.

walkman




msg:1539025
 5:21 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

"Google directory listings are actually showing up in top spots. What, MSN can't find their own so they use Googles"

this is funny. Where did Google get the "Google" directory entries from?

Hugene




msg:1539026
 7:16 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

this really is interesting, people seem to be split on this msn topic (only odd thing is people that post just to congartulate MSNdude; nobody knows him personally, and he is probably not a big-shot programmer anywyas, but more likelly some marketing dude, so no need to congratulate him really)

the results haven't changed for my keywords.

BTW, as ads are pay per cliks, advertising on MSN also wont cost you more then whe it was through Overture UNLESS msn boosts the prices.

However, with 3 big players, we can only expect the prices to remain fixed, or drop.

Then, we might face a really dangerous situation. If MSN decides to follow Google's way and go with high ad distribution and lowered ad costs, we could have the market being stretched too thin. Could drasticly bring down the payments made to webmasters and drive a lot of us out of buisness. Such a scenario won't really hurt msn, as web advertisment will probably always be nothing more than a drop in the bucket. Google on the other hand will be destroyed, and msn will be back on top in yet another industry, and will serve its ads in its search, and everyone will brainlessly log to their Hotmail with their IE installed on Longhorn, while trojans will record their every keystroke and viruses will delete theyr hdd every 2 months.

Essex_boy




msg:1539027
 8:13 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

msn will be back on top in yet another industry, and will serve its ads in its search, and everyone will brainlessly log to their Hotmail with their IE installed on Longhorn, while trojans will record their every keystroke and viruses will delete theyr hdd every 2 months. - but apart from that you reckon MSN'll be ok?

I suspect that the people saying well done are the ones that have been hit hard by google and it 'improvements', like myself.

I really do think we need competition on the web search thingy, if one company controls it then pow.

You get bizarre updates that knock sites off the face of the earth.

Yeah I know MSN have a habit of winnning and then shafting the users however Google have a massive lead and MSn have not managed it yet.

steveb




msg:1539028
 8:25 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Very major changes today.

The results are much better. The ranking algo changed to a more sensible one which moves sites up and down somewhat, and I'd say about 40% of the useless, elementary school level spam has been a eliminated.

Frankly, if this batch of results had debuted when the new interface did on Thursday, one could really say "great start on the beta Microsoft". In other words, if this is the first thing the public would see, it would have been tremendous for Microsoft. All that pre-new-beta stuff though was just so horrible that their still has to be some extra skeptism in the air.

Still, much better, Microsoft. Good progress. Still much work to be done, but you are much closer to a competitive product that could be launched in Spring or even late winter.

cleanup




msg:1539029
 8:47 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Yes, there have been some changes today. It is really quite impressive watching this thing shape up.

I am seeing deeper more relevant pages returned now, something that was missing before.

The results look uncannily like Googles for a number of my searches, thats not bad because Google has the the SPAM well sorted by now for my travel area and now so does MSN by the look of it.

The only real difference that I notice between this and Google now is that Google gives plural and singular terms more leeway. MSN takes it all very literally.

Thats a minor problem as really the results look great.

Of course my sites come up well, but they do for Google and still (inspite of various insiduous bans) for Yahoo! but now the results on MSN are credible and the lack of SPAM (at least for my searches) is refreshing.

Anyway I know there are a lot of people here who are slagging the results, just think for minute if you had a real search to do now would you stop by Yahoo! or MSN..?

Rollo




msg:1539030
 8:51 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I suspect that the people saying well done are the ones that have been hit hard by google and it 'improvements', like myself.

This much is true, not much improvment in those 'improvements' from my perspective... but I do think MSN results are looking pretty good. Everyone here compares MSN exclusively to Google, but what about Yahoo? MSN's beta results are already better that Yahoo. No webmaster's bias there... most of my lousiest sites do well in Yahoo for some reason, but their reuslts are totally stale... they never seem to change.

It's Yahoo/Ink that really need to worry.

Essex_boy




msg:1539031
 9:06 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

People arent talking about Y for one good reason.

To a large extent they havent done much to gain webmasters attention, for good or bad.

dertyfern




msg:1539032
 9:14 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Rollo, I agree, Y's results are just ridiculously outdated and spammy. It seems incomprehensible that they would spend 100s of millions to acquire SE technology just to produce the marginal product they have.

Incidentally, with MS coming into the scene is the importance of Googles PR technology even more diluted? And at what point will it become pointless to even worry about it from an SEO standpoint? Meaning, webmasters insist on using PR as a gauge for link exchanges, etc. will this eventually not matter?

j_h_maccann




msg:1539033
 9:15 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I've just found the new MSN Search much better than Google,
for something I was really trying to locate as a customer.

I was looking to buy some new-ish style CD cases to package
a CD version of a website. Google returned only some gamer
enthusiast mentions and a number of affiliate domain-spam sites.
Froogle did no better, mostly the same sites.

In frustration, I tried the beta.search at MSN. I set the
sliders to "exact match" and "updated recently", {frsh=100} {mtch=0},
and MSN produced an entirely different set of results from Google,
with real information sites and plausible established merchants. It
was like an entirely different world!

It is so useful to be able to restrict the search to my exact
search terms (turning off Google's often-mistaken ideas about
synonyms), and similarly useful to take into account update
freshness. I don't see how Google can avoid adding these two
controls--they are simple and intuitive. (I don't understand
the third slider about "popularity" or something.)

dodger




msg:1539034
 9:28 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I guess how you rate the new MS search depends on what you are looking for.
I find it not as good as their present product, domains from different countries diluting the results. very important sites not appearing at all (no not mine :}}

I find Yahoo is very good, much better then MSN.

MSN as it is now is fine, just needed to get rid of some of the duplication in the resullts.

Early days for MSN, it's improving as it goes.......and it needs to.

It's funny isn't it, everyone will say MSN is fine once it returns the approximate results that Google does now.

HitProf




msg:1539035
 9:59 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

Hmmm... just did a search for Arafat from a Dutch IP address, search in any language. Both Google.nl and MSN beta.nl return a Dutch result as #1. Translates as:

#1 on Google.nl : "Arafat's health is stable" ...

#1 on MSN beta.nl: "Arafat died on 11 november 2004" ...

Don't think that's good news for Google....

(sorry for the specifics but this can hardly be made clear otherwise)

bears5122




msg:1539036
 10:03 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I don't think being happy about MSN and their results has anything to do with how well people's sites rank. I rank on and off in both SERPs. My spammier sites do much better in Google than in MSN.

I think people just want healthy competition. It's much better for the Internet Marketing community to have competition and multiple options available. When one search engine has a monopoly, they dictate everything.

I think people are just happy to have alternatives. I also think a lot of people are tired of Google's stale results. Everyone is looking for something new.

dodger




msg:1539037
 10:25 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

I also think a lot of people are tired of Google's stale results.

If the SERP's show the "best" sites available and that remains the same for a long time, it may seem stale but it is still the best result. I think people like to have alternatives and I agree that having the power in the hands of one company is a disaster waiting to happen.

If MSN and others (Yahoo already does) show the "best" results then we can't ask for more than that.

I think Google is already alternating results to not appear to be stale, a good move if the sites served up are good enough.

Crush




msg:1539038
 10:38 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

the exsisting msn turns up better results than this. They are not using backlink count to the full. If they turn this up more then the results will be closer to how it should be.

bears5122




msg:1539039
 11:09 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

If the SERP's show the "best" sites available and that remains the same for a long time, it may seem stale but it is still the best result. I think people like to have alternatives and I agree that having the power in the hands of one company is a disaster waiting to happen.

If MSN and others (Yahoo already does) show the "best" results then we can't ask for more than that.

I think Google is already alternating results to not appear to be stale, a good move if the sites served up are good enough.

When I talk about stale, I talk about sites made the past 8 months not showing up. How come when I search for a new movie, album, or politician that has a new site, they don't show up in the top 1000?

If you are looking for results from sites over 8 months old, Google is great. If you want a search with all the sites on the web, don't use Google. I'm just getting tired of looking for something new on Google and not getting answers.

Essex_boy




msg:1539040
 11:25 pm on Nov 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

So how often does this update?

This 284 message thread spans 10 pages: < < 284 ( 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 8 9 10 > >
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