Yahoo! and Bing Local: Not Just Google’s Competition

As often as we talk about Google and the importance of its position as the top search engine in the world – which is statistically true – we frequently, yet inadvertently, dismiss its top two competitors: Yahoo! and Bing. This dismissal however, should not reflect the true relevance of the two search engines in terms of their capability or usability.

Yahoo and Bing Local are both prominent local search engines that carry about as much weight in local search engine prominence as Google. Yahoo Local was established in 2004, a full year before Google launched their local Maps program, and is commonly regarded as the father of all local search engine projects. While other, smaller engines have also made competitor local search engines before and since, Yahoo is the one that made local search profitable with its Local program.

Although Yahoo and Bing have unified into one collective engine powered by Bing, they both still maintain separate local search engines, both subtitled “Local” (i.e. Yahoo Local and Bing Local). Yahoo Local is comprehensive, in that it allows you to directly edit their local search result for your business, but also uses a variety of local data providers not used by any other engine, such as WCities and DiscoverOurTown. This aspect of the engine alone is a useful and beneficial characteristic of Google’s competition.

Bing Local uses the same data providers that both Google and Yahoo use for their local information, making them slightly less unique than Yahoo, but they are still managed in a very similar way. Overall, both Yahoo and Bing have something to offer local search, even with the juggernaut of Google looming over them.



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