Testing Bing, Part 2: The Features - Shopping

Google has had shopping tools for a long time, but they haven’t really been particularly popular – or promoted. Now Bing joins the game.

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They both do the basics: you type what you want to buy, and you see a list of products, along with description, price, and reviews. They both let you filter your results by price ranges, brands, and so on. They both let you see price comparisons for a particular product, and they both offer details like tech specs and so on.

Bing keeps going. Bing lets you sort your results by either user or expert ratings. The resulting order seems to be more accurate than Google – on my example (plasma TVs), Bing has clear market leaders Pioneer and Panasonic firmly at the top, while Pioneer is nowhere to be seen in Google’s top picks. Bing also breaks down popular features (in this example, Picture, Sound Quality, Ease of Use, and so on) and lets you rank the results accordingly. There’s Bing’s Cashback feature, but I’m not convinced this is much more than a gimmick, so I’ll leave that for now.

The verdict: Bing is slightly better in features, presentation, and ratings. Google is a strong contender, though.

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Copyright © 2010 Paul Guenette and Matthew Sleno.