A couple of weeks ago we announced the launch of the new Search Engine or ‘Decision’ Engine, as they like to call it, from Microsoft, that they have chosen to call Bing.

Over the years, Microsoft has launched many new versions of it’s search engine, Bing being it’s fourth attempt, to try and challenge the Google’s dominance in the Search Market.

The previous endeavours have not even scratched the service and have certainly not given Google anything to worry about, but Bing on the other hand is appearing to be a bit more of a contender and putting up a lot more fight than the previous attempts.

In the past, from April 2006 to April 2009, Google has had the largest share of the search market by a very long way and has continued to grow over this period, where the others, Microsoft and Yahoo!, have slowly declined.

In April 2006 Microsoft owned a 8.6% share in the market, which has slowly decreased to a measly 3.5% and Yahoo!’s has dropped from 5.3% to just 2.8%. Whilst Google’s on the other hand, has risen from an impressive 69.4% to an enormous 86.9%.

Bing was officially launched on 3rd June 2009 and due to the hype surrounding the launch, helped by the marketing budget of $100 million, it managed to obtain a share of 10.8% of all the UK search traffic making it the second most popular search engine behind Google.

The new search engine generated so much publicity that it actually attracted enough traffic to make it the eighth most visited site above all of the BBC properties on 2nd June.

However, since the initial launch visitor numbers have begun to dwindle, with it’s share of the search traffic decreasing to 3.1% by 6th June, but still putting it ahead of Yahoo! and Ask for search engine traffic.

Despite the decrease in traffic, one encouraging sign for Microsoft is that the average time spent on the site has increased to 8.5 minutes, which shows that people are actually using the search engine rather than just having a quick look.

According to Hitwise this eight and half minutes is about half of the average time spent on Google and is slightly less than Yahoo!’s, but suggests that visitors are interacting with the site and not just visiting out of curiosity.

It has also been reported that 55% of consumers intend to replace Google with Bing as their search engine of choice.

This shows real promise for Microsoft and suggests that they may be in the running to challenge Google’s dominance after all.

News Portal conducted a survey of over 1000 people and the results showed that 58% of participants think that Google is becoming to dominant.

The survey also showed that in general people like the name ‘Bing’, with 65% liking the new brand name and also 90% of respondents would use the phrase ‘to Bing it’.

However, on a less encouraging note the survey also revealed that 55% of people do not feel that Bing is any different to Google.

We suppose only time will tell if Bing will really challenge Google dominance, so watch this space.