Friday Social Round Up: What A Day It Has Bing!

 Stefan Weitz speaks in the Fresh Egg Office

Today in the Fresh Egg office we were very pleased to host a presentation by Stefan Weitz, Director of Search at Bing. Stefan covered many topics and discussed some interesting ideas and developments around the present and future world of search. Most relevant to this post, however, is the increasing affect of social on search results.

Firstly, as you are probably aware, Bing has deals with both Facebook and Twitter. This deal allows Bing to index all public updates in real time. In the US this currently means that every time you publicly ‘Like’ or ‘Share’ a link on Facebook, Bing will receive this information and utilise it for future relevant searches made by your friends. It will even display ‘Face Tiles’ (your Facebook photo) next to the result.

How does this affect search? Your social recommendations can bring pages once hidden away in the rankings back to page one, if they are relevant to the search query. Stefan also revealed that Bing can easily distinguish between natural ‘Like’ and ‘Share’ patterns and those of ‘Like Farms’. These results can’t be easily manipulated.

Later, Stefan discussed the increasing personalisation of search and the importance of the ‘5 Ws’: who, where, what, when and why. With Bing, all of the 5 Ws can affect the results you are given. For example, if I was to search for the phrase ‘Local Gym’ whilst in the Fresh Egg office, Bing would work out that I was in Worthing and would give me tailored results for gyms in Worthing. Bing would choose these local results over high ranking gym pages.

Adaptive Search is also an important change. Bing takes into account previous searches and uses this to produce a more relevant page of results. High ranking pages with the same or similar titles but different topics can be pushed down or up in the rankings to allow for more relevant results based on personal search habits.

Interesting facts

  • The average search term is 2.4 words
  • Only 1 in 4 searches returned are successful (i.e. return what the user is looking for)
  • Everyone on Earth will create 1.8 zetabytes of data in 2011 (the equivalent of 57 billion 32GB iPads, which lined up back to back would be twice the length of the Great Wall of China!)
  • Bing has no intention of releasing their own Social Media platform; they are happy with their relationship with Facebook

Are you interested in what Stefan had to say and feel like you missed out? Don’t worry, Fresh Egg filmed the presentation and it will be available online at a later date!

Infographic Time...

As this is a Bing post I thought an Infographic about its first year would be fitting.