While most of us in the SEO world consider Bing as an “also ran”, that may change this fall. This week also came news from Google competitor Yahoo! that they were “reorganizing” it’s workforce by laying off roughly 2000 workers. One would think that Google has it all but wrapped up, but I think that Bing shows promise that this fall may be just the beginning for Microsoft-owned Bing. I based this theory on a few key events which will synergistically arrive this fall.
Windows 7, with an RTM date of July 2009, has had a glorious three year run. Coming on the heels of a Vista misstep, Windows 7 fought a long, hard battle for acceptance in the corporate world. Windows 8, with a rumored release date of October 2012. Based on it’s Metro-style interface of Windows Phone and XBox360, Microsoft is betting the farm on it’s newest pony. It’s been three years since Windows 7, the economy has been tough and I think people are ready for the upgrade to Windows 8. The significance from an SEO perspective is the default browser for Windows 8 will be Internet Explorer and the default search engine will be Bing. Certainly, there will will be many who will immediately install Chrome or Firefox, but look for a big uptick for both IE and Bing as users buy new machines with Windows 8 preinstalled.
Also coming this summer, is a new era of Ultrabooks with the Ivy Bridge CPU that promises lower costs and better performance over the current Sandy Bridge CPU. With tablets stealing all the press time, you would think that no on is buying computer anymore, but for most of us we still require the horsepower and application consistency that can only be found in a true computer. Naturally though, we want that laptop to be the fastest, lightest computer that we can possibly afford and hence the Ultrabook. This class of laptops is known for it’s lightweight and speedy bootup times, thanks in part to solid state drives. If all other tablets take a cue from the iPad, all Ultrabooks are a knockoff from the Macbook Air. I think that most people who want an Ultrabook will try to wait a few months until they can get theirs with Windows 8 preinstalled.
While I don’t think Google will be toppled from it’s “king of the mountain” role any time soon, I do think that Bing may gain some traction beginning this fall for at least a six month period until people tire of Internet Explorer, grow into their new Ultrabooks and begin installed other browsers that don’t use Bing as their default search engine.