Microsoft has taken offense to the practice of paying to improve one’s ranking in Google search results and has launched a campaign touting its "honest" search results.
Google is the leader in search, but Bing contend the company has begun a "pay-to-rank" practice whereby companies ranking in product searches is determined by how much they pay. Bing derides the practices as being "Scroogled," and said its approach provides consumers with more credible results.
"We don't let who pays us for ads or other services affect how your search results are ranked," said Mike Nichols, Bing’s chief marketing officer. "Search, as a business, depends on consumer trust, and that requires keeping search results and ads separate. With Google Shopping the wall between search results and ads is gone — and so are several popular shopping sites. At Bing, we're committed to keeping ads where they belong and will continue to deliver the most relevant search results possible."
With the Don't Get Scroogled campaign, Bing is talking to holiday shoppers about the importance of getting unbiased, comprehensive search results when they shop online — and how changes at Google Shopping could leave them with fewer choices and higher prices this season.
Beginning today and continuing throughout the holiday shopping season, the Bing-sponsored "Don't Get Scroogled" activities will appear online and offline, demonstrating why consumers should be concerned and helping them take action. Bing also said it was calling on Google to stop its "pay-to-rank" system for their shopping results and provide shoppers with honest search results.
Bing is urging consumers to visit http://www.scroogled.com to learn more about how to avoid getting "Scroogled," and renewing its commitment to the old rules of search by delivering objective results.
"We won't let who pays us for ads or other services affect what you see in your shopping search results,’ according to the company. "We won't switch to pay-to-rank to allow fees to influence the ranking of shopping search results. In short, we think that too many shoppers who use Google for their shopping are getting "Scroogled" when they should be getting fair, honest, open search results."