| 4:57 am on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
Maybe he means that in order to compete with Google, MSN will have to start paying people to use MSN search.
Unless it was a very significant financial incentive, why would someone use a search engine that provided less than the best search results (whether those results are on MSN, Yahoo, Google, Ask, or elsewhere)?
How would that affect the quality of clicks for advertisers? Isn't that in some ways similar to the click fraud farms that pay people to click on ads?
What advertiser wants to pay for ads from people who are incentivized to see them or click on them?
I think by staying the course with no paid inclusion and no incentivized searches, it will take more than MSN paying people to use MSN to pull people away from Google or any other engine.
| 5:11 am on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
I agree. Paying me $50 a year would not make me change SEs even if the SERPs are as good. A 1 in 1000 chance of winning $50 for a search however would probably convince me to try the search first on the offering SE. But I think such a campaign would require more bandwidth than even MSN can afford. Think of all the Bots that will be heading that way.
| 5:41 am on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
Apologies for double posting,
This thing got me thinking, He mentions incentives. That is similar to what google already does. I think they are building loyalty by buying companies like keyhole and offering their products for free as google earth to the world community. I think that google is very good in finding these potential opportunities. I have yet to see someone just not love google earth.
| 6:41 pm on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
Great analogy a1call -
In effect, by creating all the new toys and services like GMail, Froogle, Earth, Groups, etc.. Google could be considered to be paying people to use the site in the form of all the new apps they come out with.
From an advertisers perspective that is a heck of a lot better setup than actually paying people to use the search engine and it gives Google more ad outlets.
| 8:37 pm on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
also similar to Y! and other portals, what with free games, email, calendars, etc., etc., etc., which somewhat (successfully even) encourages folks to do their searching via Y as well.
| 9:00 pm on Nov 4, 2005 (gmt 0)|
I think he means, simply and specifically, that MSN is going to start offering people incentives to use its search and that other search companies are going to have to do so in order to keep users. I mean some kind of non-complementary service incentive such as $ or points that count towards something or other. If MSN offers me $x per search (so that their contextual ads are in front of me instead of Google's or Yahoo's), I might keep using MSN to search with just so I can keep racking up $ or points or whatever the incentive is -- especially if the results are acceptable enough to me to continue to do so.
| 12:27 am on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
iWon doesn't seem to have gotten anywhere with the incentive strategy, but maybe MSN can make it work.
| 12:33 am on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
I think users will be able to see right through any incentive program. If an incentive is offered thats as good as admiting that results arent as good as their opposition.
| 2:06 am on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
|If an incentive is offered thats as good as admiting that results arent as good as their opposition. |
Not necessarily. "Not as good as the competition" is not the same as "good enough". A Chevy is "not as good" as a BMW but I don't need (or want) a BMW because the Chevy is "good enough" for me.
The whole scheme seems comparable to people using Adwords to advertise their website that generates $ via Adsense.
| 2:13 am on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
|I think such a campaign would require more bandwidth than even MSN can afford |
They have enough money to buy all the bandwidth in the world.
| 3:00 am on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
|I don't need (or want) a BMW because the Chevy is "good enough" for me. |
I agree with that statement, but when looking for information online you want to be using the best tool you can find. I agree with a few others in this thread, even a incentive woulden't convince me to use another engine, other than the one I felt was giving me the best results.
| 6:21 pm on Nov 5, 2005 (gmt 0)|
|I agree with that statement, but when looking for information online you want to be using the best tool you can find. |
If you need the best tool you can find, sure. Most surfers don't need that.
| 1:34 am on Nov 7, 2005 (gmt 0)|
You don't have to pay people to use a search engine. Sure it is a different approach, but not needed.
All you have to do is give good results..
Theory about backlinks was all good but back fired big time. Orginally webmasters would recommend other sites just cuz they thought they offered something good, resource or whatever. So then it was all about backlinks.. Well how many of those recommended links came down when it hurt your site in the listings? tons. So now you have a bunch of webmasters spamming to blogs and getting ranking high. Is this what they really had intended? I don't think so, but a loop hole.
Backlinks should have never been considered so much. If you have a good quality site with related contents, you should rank. Users will be happy finding what they want. If users are happy they will come back.
Google result totally suck right now.. Who wants to go to a search engine and find search results sending them to other search directories, or blogs, or messageboards. If you want to find search directories, blogs, or messageboards on a subject. You will include this in your keyword for searching.
I personally would love to see MSN with no blog spamming websites in top results. And have content related results. From what I have seen at MSN there results are pretty good minus the blog spamming sites. I like MSN results a lot better than yahoo and google for personal searches. I would hate to see them follow other engines techniques.
| 1:41 am on Nov 7, 2005 (gmt 0)|
one way might be to follow googles lead and start offering free broadband in certain areas ..eventually doing deals with the ISPs..for that they do have the money ..
also would lock in IE users ..
| 5:15 am on Nov 7, 2005 (gmt 0)|
I think the point of Gates' statement was to take a few billion out of Google's stock valuation, nothing else.
| 4:09 am on Nov 9, 2005 (gmt 0)|
>> They have enough money to buy all the bandwidth in the world
buy all the bandwith, and get the earth for FREE! ;)
This is war guys and MSFT is locked and loaded. They will spare nothing
>> why would someone use a search engine that provided less than the best search results
what if it's good enough for 90% of the people? Does it matter if the best result in #1 of #3 to most people? Plus, I think Gates is thinking ahead, when the gap will narrow. MSNbot is by far the busiest bot on my site. They are working on something. Other than hardware, the only difference seems to be the algo; both have the same data.
Bill's problem is that Google is not netscape, Google is making a fortune and has money to fight back.
| 6:37 am on Nov 9, 2005 (gmt 0)|
|And in an exclusive interview with Computing, Gates hints that MSN is about to test ways of offering financial incentives for users, to help the portal site compete with Google. |
Hmm. Let me try to translate this. Bill thought that creating a search engine would be really easy. Considering that MSN could barely be considered a beta product at this point, still unstable, still easy to spam, easiest of all by far, Bill may be starting to realize that, just like all his other web endeveavors, MS is severely handicapped by just not caring about the web as a rule. Specifically, MS is handicapped by Bill not caring about the web.
So he starts to think, in the only way he can: how can I make people leave Google? Pay them. That's almost like giving up before he even entered the race. No wonder MS can't get web stuff working, they simply do not have the drive, the corporate culture, whatever it takes, to understand it, to thrive in it.
It's getting sort of to the pathetic level. As long as Bill is head of MS this isn't going to change, all he understands are proprietary lockdown models. And he'll keep doing well in those areas.
This is one of the funnier stories I've read recently. I really feel sorry for all the guys who join MS believing the hiring hype about MS finally seeing the error of its web ways, same old same old.
Bill's getting old, there's no doubt about it, he's losing his edge.
Good points on google really giving you something already, gmail, etc, free stuff, all over. Then that really great pr stuff, cheap at many times the cost, summer of code, that's how you win hearts and minds of young programmers, the ones you want to hire in a few years when they leave school. The ones MS can't get for their search stuff because google already got them, LOL...
| 5:17 pm on Nov 12, 2005 (gmt 0)|
Unless it was a very significant financial incentive, why would someone use a search engine that provided less than the best search results
Actually, I'm not sure that's true. The case I always cite is the Ben and Jerry free ice cream days in Berkeley (every year to celebrate their birthday). This is in an area where almost everyone makes $10+/hour and majority $20+ . Some of the people in line look like muckety mucks from the university, so presumably well-educated and making much more than $20/hour. Yet there they are, waiting two hours in line for a $2 ice cream because it's FREE.
Then there are airlines and points... I think an SE that could offer points that accumulate with every purchase that results from clicking a link on their ads and could be turned in for free ipods, could attract a lot of people no matter who foolish it would be from an objective point of view to waste hundres of hours not finding things on an ineffective SE just to get a $100 prize.
| 5:41 pm on Nov 12, 2005 (gmt 0)|
good point. Most people have no money and live paycheck to paycheck; even those who have it, love free stuff.
| 6:50 am on Nov 13, 2005 (gmt 0)|
it's simple really ... be the predominatly available search engine ...
this means spend dollars on (1) advertising (2) paying publishers a bigger cut to place MSN ads in front of clickers
things like partnering with Dell to have homepage set to MSN Search all new machines ... stuff like that is huge
big companies spend big bucks (sometimes for years) to acquire market share. if MSN paid 100% of ad revenue to publishers instead of some lesser portion ... they would be winning lots of eyeballs without spending a dime
i figure they will spend plenty of dimes in conventional ads plus online advertising and likely offer publishers a sweetened pot for a year or two