Bing Takes on Google, Allows Users to Consult Their World

A couple of months ago, we wrote about Bing’s feature which allowed users to link social profiles and make searching for social accounts easier. Now, Bing is building upon the idea of social search put forth by Google Plus with a revamp that it will be rolling out in the coming weeks. The redesign of the search engine will change the look and features users will experience when using it. Here’s a breakdown.

Bing search engine

Core Web Results – The revamped Bing will display three columns after a user has logged in and performed a search. The first column (on the left side of the screen) will display the core web results. Although this particular column seems straightforward, the other two columns offer more options.

Snapshot – The middle column, known as the Snapshot, uses users’ search terms and location to try to determine what information or action the user is trying to get or perform. For example, if I were to search ‘Prosecco,’ a Chicago area restaurant, the snapshot would display maps, contact information hours and even the option to make a reservation via OpenTable. In short, the Snapshot column displays localized, personalized results catered for that specific user. This is part of Bing’s mission to help users spend less time searching and more time doing.

Sidebar – The final column is the Sidebar which displays a variety of social information. As we discussed in a previous post, Bing has allowed users to link account like Facebook and LinkedIn to their Bing account. Taking this information, the Sidebar then displays a variety of search-related activity from friends. This is the most interesting addition to Bing in that it allows users to ask friends questions about the subject they’re searching for, get suggestions about which friends might be able to help them, find contact information for experts in that area and see questions friends are asking and that they can answer.

Users who are interested in testing out the redesign as soon as it’s available can sign up for an invite here.

What do you think of the Bing redesign? Is it a better realization of the task that Google Search Plus Your World originally set out to perform? Which site is doing it better? Share your thoughts!