Remember Bing? Microsoft’s failed attempt to challenge Google in the search engine race – once considered a joke alongside this guy.
Well, laugh no longer. Bing has quietly turned itself into its own giant in digital advertising.
According to Bloomberg, Bing is on track to generate roughly $5.3 billion in revenue in Microsoft’s last fiscal year, which ended on June 30.
Given the range of Microsoft’s service offering, web search and advertising is a fairly low priority for the tech behemoth, yet it still pulls in 2.5x the amount that Twitter pulls in in advertising revenue. It’s even being reported that Bing will pull in more money than Microsoft makes from selling Windows PCs to consumers!
Want more crazy stats? Well, YouTube’s growth in advertising revenue is being lauded by many as Google work to convert the audience into Dollars and has increased by approximately 50%. Bing’s growth in the same period? 43% – not bad for a joke!
Now let’s not get ahead of ourselves, Bing’s revenue is still dwarfed by those of Google and Facebook but it reinforces Microsoft’s patience and pragmatism when it comes to its products.
Microsoft has been aggressive in sticking Bing web search in as many places as possible, boosting the number of web searches and the company’s opportunities to sell ads. Microsoft has previously attempted to buy Yahoo! – which has just been bought by Verizon if you didn’t see – but ended up settling to be the built-in search engine across Yahoo’s string of websites. It did similar deals with Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Fire gadgets and AOL websites.
Perhaps most crucially, in the year-old Windows 10 operating software, Bing search gets a pole position on the computer home screen in the guise of Microsoft’s Cortana digital assistant. Microsoft said this spring that more than 35 per cent of its search revenue in March came from Windows 10 computers.
How Verizon’s purchase of Yahoo! affects Microsoft’s plan for Bing is yet to be seen, however, the reversal of fortunes for the once forgotten search engine should serve us all as a reminder that overnight success is a myth, and that patience is the real key to success.