The world of search engine optimization (SEO) may have made a drastic change today as Microsoft released Bing, its new search engine, days ahead of schedule.

When the software giant made the much-hyped announcement of Bing last week, the company said it would roll out the service this Wednesday. But at some point today the so-called decision engine went live effectively replacing the company’s Live search.

Although a recent report from comScore found that Microsoft was a distant third in the search engine market with 8.2 percent of searches in April – compared to 64.2 percent for Google and 20.4 percent for Yahoo – some believe the money invested in the new search may pay off for Microsoft.

Larry Dignan, editor in chief of ZDNet, says that if Bing is able to take at least some of the market share away from Yahoo while perhaps reducing the asking price for the search engine, Bing will have "more than paid for itself."

It’s still unclear exactly what effect Bing will have on the world of search engine optimization (SEO), but the UK’s Guardian newspaper reports that the SEO aspect of the search engine is receiving some attention with @studentsoftware tweeting: "Keyword stuffing that skews Google search results doesn’t quite work in bing. Bing 1 Google 0. Over to you SEO gurus…"

Katherine Griwert is Brafton's Marketing Director. She's practiced content marketing, SEO and social marketing for over five years, and her enthusiasm for new media has even deeper roots. Katherine holds a degree in American Studies from Boston College, and her writing is featured in a number of web publications.