Why did Bing sign a deal with Encyclopedia Britannica?

on June 22, 2012 | Bing | Comments (0)

When it comes to the search engine industry, it is definitely a race between two horses, but the ultimate winner is the search engine users. Recently, Google launched its knowledge graph which was aimed at ensuring that the users get more relevant answers to their queries. This development quickly shifted the balance and established Google as the heavier and bigger giant. This was just a few weeks after Bing had attempted to push over Google from the search engine ranks by introducing social search.

Bing’s answer to the Knowledge Graph

For a while, search engine analysts have waited to see whether Bing will counter the knowledge graph with something even better. Some had concluded that the knowledge graph was beyond reproach and that nothing could top it. However, Bing ended the wait when it recently announced that it had partnered with Encyclopaedia Britannica with the aim of ensuring that users get the answers they seek to their queries.

Knowledge is authority

Granted, Encyclopaedia Britannica is the most trusted encyclopaedia in the world, and it has a long and illustrious history of delivering quality content to scholars and readers, this news is definitely good news. A few weeks ago, the two hundred and forty four year old encyclopaedia announced that it was no longer financially practical to oil the wheels of its printing press and that it was going to produce e-books from now on. The fact that Encyclopaedia Britannica plans to digitise its content is a great thing, and Bing has chosen to get on this bandwagon early. This could well establish Bing as the national library and resource centre of choice for scholars from all over the world.

Some people are actually starting to question the accuracy of Wikipedia and with Bing partnering with an official Encyclopedia this is a great way to provide further trusted information to web users.

Google v Bing 

Google has for a long time topped the search engine charts considering that 900 million people use it every month, compared to Bing’s 162 million. However, Bing has developed explosively since its inception and it has worked considerably hard with the hope of one day dethroning the high and mighty Google.

More answers to user queries, quicker 

According to the Bing blog, the partnership between Bing and Britannica has been formed with the aim of ensuring that the user gets more relevant and useful information. Encyclopaedia Britannica has practically all information on everything. People have used it faithfully before and after the inception of the internet. This is because they trusted its content and they have always known that it can answer any query that they may have on any particular topic. Bing hopes that by partnering with the Encyclopedia, users will be able to get what they want without necessarily clicking a number of pages. This will definitely result in reduced time and effort while searching and Bing is sure that all users will definitely be happy with this.

Enhancing Search 

When particular keywords are searched in Bing, the normal results from various web sources and directories will be listed, including results from Wikipedia. However, together with all these results, there will be results from Encyclopaedia Britannica which will provide much needed answers to the user’s search query. Therefore the user can choose to simply go to the encyclopaedia to get the answers they want, or they can use the encyclopaedia together with a few other links. In the end, the search experience will be greatly improved and the users will definitely get relevant answers to their search terms.

Encyclopaedia Britannica only recently came online

Encyclopaedia Britannica is still a toddler on the internet and it is yet to put on its training shoes. However, there is no doubt that this encyclopaedia will hit the ground running once it has fully established itself, and it will clearly overtake all the other online encyclopaedias. Bing hopes that both of them can run together and that this race will lead to the finish line with Bing and its users as the ultimate champions.

Bing is continuing to differentiate 

Microsoft could not hide its excitement when it announced the merger as it is sure that Bing will now deliver content that is more organized. Britannica may be working on strengthening its presence online, but there is no doubt that it will emerge quite strong in the near future. Its digital content will include multimedia materials and books as well as educational tools that will definitely improve the searching experience, and Bing will be the best place for users to get access to these results.

David Cowling : Editor and Founder of I also run a Social Media Agency where I do consulting work and another blog dedicated to Instagram news. Connect with me: Twitter | LinkedIn | Google + or contact me here. Alternatively, you can send me an email at