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Search Engines Wars are over.

Search engines wars are over. The battle ended few years ago and the winner and last man standing is Google.com.

Of the two remaining rivals that mattered - Yahoo.com has simply become obsolete. Without any significant modernisation done to the engine it became an easy target for the Black Hat SEO spammers, yielding non-relevant search results and losing more users in turn.

Microsoft's engine was more interesting example of how not to manage search engine. Formerly known as "MSN Search", later renamed to "Live Search" and recently to "Bing" remained more modern and capable of competing with Google on technological level. Unfortunately, at the time, Microsoft didn't realize its own potential and instead of striking when Google was weak (Google was during a long and painful process of infrastructure upgrade in 2007), they retreated to where they feel strongest. They were so focused on Windows Vista release that they forfeit the chance of beating Google in their own field.

As the result they had made a series of mistakes with changing the name and the url of their search engine, confusing the users and dispersing their search traffic. The first name change was to "Live Search" and search engine url was changed to live.com domain. It was done most likely to promote Windows Vista operating system as the portal had Windows Vista like appearance and was launched at the same time as the new OS release. The live.com turned out to be a fiasco even greater than Windows Vista itself. Two years later Microsoft again changed the name of their search engine to... "bing". Terrible name IMHO, but they apparently wanted to have short domain name, and as result they had only terrible names to chose from.

Any webmaster can see the results of the search engine wars just by analysing the logs for his or her website. They vary from site to site but worldwide Google seem to have about 90% market share. Is it good or bad? On one side having only one significant engine, it means webmasters have to focus on search engine optimisation for only that engine, which is good. On the other hand monopoly is never good for the market, and domination of search engine market by a single company, may not bode well for the users in the long turn.

Last updated: 12-03-2013

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