The “Britbing” partnership aims to equip the users with brief answers to search queries within the Bing search results page by inserting a snip of relevant information, few historical facts, and a thumbnail image among the list of the standard 10 blue links.
"The answer provides a quick overview of the subject, a thumbnail image, and useful facts and figures making it easier than ever to get trusted content in search," said Franco Salvetti, principal development lead for Bing, on Microsoft's Search Blog. "We also pull in direct links to other trusted sources."
Google may be incorporating restaurant reviews from its Zagat acquisition into its search results, but Bing is looking to one-up its search engine rival by signing Encyclopedia Britannica to the content mix.
Microsoft just announced a deal with the venerable encyclopedia brand that will add entries from its references to the body of Bing. Britannica Online answers will show up directly on the Bing search results page.
"There's an analogy to what Google is doing with its 'Knowledge Graph' results in the right column. However, Google's module is compiled from, often, multiple sources and generate additional search results," said Greg Sterling, principal analyst at Sterling Market Intelligence.
Bing (formerly Live Search, Windows Live Search, and MSN Search) is a web search engine from Microsoft. Bing was unveiled by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer on May 28, 2009 at the 'All Things Digital' conference in San Diego. It went fully online on June 3, 2009.
Where as, the Encyclopædia Britannica, published by Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., is a general knowledge English-language encyclopaedia. It is regarded as one of the most scholarly of English language encyclopaedias.
"Britannica as a brand may still have some value to certain groups of people. But its brand has been substantially diluted over the past decade as the Internet has grown to almost entirely replace traditional encyclopedias as a source of information," said analyst Greg Sterling.
According to comScore's latest numbers, Google still leads the search market charge with 66.2 percent market share. Google is followed by Microsoft Sites, which tally a 15.2 percent market share. Yahoo Sites garnered a 14.1 percent market share.
Bing has been scraping along since its launch to steal searchers from Google and has had some success. Microsoft hopes initiatives like the Encyclopedia Britannica partnership and the June redesign will help.
However, Bing’s related search suggestions tend to be more closely related to your original search term than what Google’s Knowledge Graph provides. One can see that the Bing’s suggestions are a bit better at predicting additional related queries than Knowledge Graph.
With these liaison, one can hope that both Bing and Encyclopedia Britannica mutually benefit from each other and in the process help users too.