Months ago, Bing and Facebook partnered to bring searchers Like-based results. When users logged into Facebook, Bing traditionally offered links that were Liked or shared on Facebook under the general results. Now, Microsoft is expanding its social search options, offering Liked annotations for all results.
The company announced today that Liked results will be more fully integrated within web results. Like data will be featured directly under results, and this development indicates social content could play a bigger role in catching clicks from Bing's growing users.
Officials explain that searchers may not see Liked results for every query – in fact, Brafton tried about ten sample queries and was unable to see Liked data in results for any of them. (The difficulty of finding Liked results on Bing's social search is something explored in more detail in a Brafton blog post.)
Nonetheless, Lawrence King of Bing's social team, says, “when [Liked data] does trigger, it's delightful. We are hoping that it will make searching Bing more effortless and enjoyable.”
The announcement follows Google's recent social search updates. As Brafton reported, the search giant is now offering publicly available social recommendations (notably, not Facebook Likes) to its search results.
Bing's update to its social search features may be its attempt to offer more competitive results. The company also updated its results with new Bing “tiles” – visual indicators of authority sites that are aimed at helping searchers find the most relevant results.