Three Questions Bing Should Have Asked When Launching New Emoji Search Feature

Three Questions Bing Should Have Asked When Launching New Emoji Search Feature

Bing Launches New Emoji Search Feature | Blueprint

Image taken from www.seoexpertpage.com on November 10, 2014

Bing has always worked hard to distinguish itself from Google. It might not own the largest video hosting platform on the Internet or have created a popular social media network, but as of October 27, you are now able to search via emojis on Bing.

The search engine joins Yahoo and Yelp in adding this feature, hoping to interest the texting-centric generations of millennials who have long mastered the art of having a full conversation in tiny generic pictures. Google has not included this component, though there are suggested search results that include emojis.

Picture this

The search function works with single images, as well as multiple ones to create specific organic listings.

Should you want a flight to England, you only need to type in a tiny Union Jack flag followed by a picture of an airplane to get the most-up-to-date listings and bookings. If you’re trying to find a great pizza place, you only need to enter the pizza emoji to read reviews on the best slice near you. We unfortunately can’t tell you what would happen if you put in a smiling piece of human waste as we didn’t want to know the results.

While this is an interesting addition to the search engine’s aspects and definitely a great source of entertainment, this announcement raises a few eyebrows.

It also sparked a few questions that can not only pertain to Bing’s newest aspect, but to all facets of content creation.

Is it necessary?

While some might not feel there is a pressing need to be able to search for a dog by inputting a cartoon of a puppy, others may disagree. But when you’re creating content for your brand, it is important to ask before writing a blog, recording a video or creating an image if the content is needed by your audience as a whole.

Creating content for content’s sake ignores your audience’s needs. It does nothing but build links that will not retain readers and discourage loyalty to your brand.

Before implementing any form of content, make sure there is a meaning and purpose behind each piece you design and each decision you make. Your audience is smart and will bypass any filler pieces in favor of something of quality.

Is it helpful?

New Emoji Search Results On Bing | BlueprintSearching by emojis could be useful in certain circumstances, though it might take the same amount of time to type the word “book” as it does to find and insert a drawing of one. Your content should benefit your readers in some way, be it by educating them on a concept that relates to your brand or detailing a product that you provide.

No matter the topic, your content should provide pertinent information to your consumers. This will not only show that your brand cares about the readers, it will also demonstrate that you are a company that is knowledgeable in the field you specialize in.

Is it entertaining?

Bing certainly scored in this category! You can easily spend hours coming up with combinations of emojis and laughing at the returned search results.

Any content that you create should not only be necessary and informative, but also hook your reader’s attention. Helping your clients learn about a particular topic is important, but there is no need to bore them along the way.

You can try to package your content in an interesting infographic, add eye-catching images to a landing page or add in colorful imagery into your blogs to help keep your reader’s attention as you educate them.

However, make sure that the presentation method works with your content, not against it.

For example, graphs and charts might help an article look professional, but they are pretty useless without data to input.

The Final Verdict

Bing might not have earned a “yes” on all three questions, but you should work hard to ensure that all content you publish does. Creating necessary, informative and entertaining content is a challenge, but mastering this art is what earns respect from customers and creates a brand that is trusted in an online space.

By: Blueprint
  • Nathan Taitt

    Love the way this ties back to universal truths for all content. Very true.

  • Jason Corrigan

    Really cool topic that isn’t really being explored and discussed. Since people are used to searching for various concepts by literally typing out terms and thoughts, do you see a particular learning curve or period of time before people become comfortable applying images? Do you have any stats on how many people use the image search feature since its introduction?

    • Rebekah Faucette

      Bing launched the feature on October 27, 2014 and has not released any data on the search success yet. However, emoji use is incredibly high in certain online platforms, as evidenced by the ever-growing numbers of emojis on Twitter at http://www.emojitracker.com/, which could point to high initial numbers for Bing.

      As for a learning curve for usage, I think those who already use emojis frequently will appreciate the new feature, particularly during mobile searches. Emoji novices can also get something out of the search feature, as it allows them to finally get a specific definition for the tiny pictures they might not have understood. But while it is entertaining, the number of jokes that have been made at the search feature’s expense hints that it will not have a lasting impact on how people search and the populace at large will not need to become comfortable thinking in pictures rather than words.

  • Samantha Torres

    Certainly this could be an interesting feature to play with and test out for laughs, but what does it mean for us as marketers and adjusting our content strategy? Do you think an adjustment is needed?

    • Rebekah Faucette

      Emojis use is widespread, with the most popular form of emojis found on iOS mobile products. However, there is no current standard form of emojis even across the iOS platform. This could exclude specific iOS users, not to mention Android users. Until there is a more regulated form of emojis across all mobile platforms, I personally feel that optimizing our content for emoji use is not a priority.

  • Blair Sanders

    This is great! You pose good questions to ask about this new feature. It’s one thing to have a feature that entertains you and a friend for an evening. It’s another if it does that and it actually useful. It will be interesting to see how this turns out!

  • Naima Othman

    Very creative feature! I’m not sure if it will simplify searches or make it complex, but I can’t wait to try it. Combining content and emoji would be great for some websites.

  • Guest

    Anybody remember playing Kings Quest? The game helped me learn how to type and harness lateral thinking, because in Kings Quest 1 through 4, you had to type everything you wanted the hero to do. Then came Kings Quest V, and typing was gone. All replaced with icons. I was sick over it, because I’d lost my ability to feel part of the game. The evolution of digital is to simplify interface, and over the next decade we should expect to see the replacement of text with icons.

  • Joshua Bains

    Anybody remember playing Kings Quest? The game helped me learn how to type and harness lateral thinking, because in Kings Quest 1 through 4, you had to type everything you wanted the hero to do. Then came Kings Quest V, and typing was gone. All replaced with icons. I was sick over it, because I’d lost my ability to feel part of the game. The evolution of digital is to simplify interface, and over the next decade we should expect to see the replacement of text with icons.​

  • Chuniq Inpower

    Very interesting. Much like Jason inquired below, I’m interested to know the statistics behind how many users are implementing this function into their search queries. I don’t envision that this function will last, as it seems like a novelty to enter emoji or emoji pairs into a search engine to receive generalized results (as you mentioned under entertainment), because much is up for interpretation.

    My questions continue. How will desktop users take advantage? What are the cultural implications (or lack there of) of the human icon faces on popular emoji software? There is also not a standard set of emoji, although many icons are transferrable among providers/software. I would think that emoji tracking would be much more productive in social media analytics and measuring public emotion or opinion on a brand or product. Thanks for sharing. I’m interested in seeing how this takes shape!

  • Interesting read. Reminds me of how hieroglyphics were the single source of communication for many generations. I personally don’t use emojis to communicate, but this is a interesting perspective by Bing to allow people to search by them. This just proves that many people’s time is becoming more and more valuable. & that we don’t have to talk w/ the twitter 160 character limit but instead use 🙂 // that made texting such a popular form of communication.

  • Caroline Ripa

    Very cool article! I think this will be a great feature to search engines because of how much we all use our phones on a daily basis. It will also cut down time it takes to type a word and give faster results.

  • Adam Baxter

    It might be a fun thing to try every now and then, but similar to what Aaron said, it seems like a step backwards. I’m interested to know just why Bing decided to implement this. Was it just a stunt for kicks-and-giggles? Or do they actually see it becoming a widely used method of searching?

  • Sean Li

    Using emoji is a great way to overcome the language barriers. Now you can find pizza in any Asian countries with Bing even you do not speak any of those languages : )
    Also, Emoji search could be more accurate than searching with keywords in some situation. Not everybody searching

  • LilitM

    I cannot decide whether I like it or not. Hmmm… Not the article, but the feature 🙂 Nicely written, the article brings up questions that are indeed valid. Is the emoji Necessary? Helpful? Entertaining?

    Necessary – No. Internet started out with just words, images only became ornamental as it grew.

    Helpful – Sometimes. I often insert a smiley-face in my emails to indicate a friendly tone of the message instead of writing out the intention behind the smiley-face, which saves me a little time.

    Entertaining – Depends. It really depends on the audience, age, and industry. What’s considered entertaining for one, is annoying for another. It is all relative.

    While there is no absolute “yay” or “nay” to emojis, I am glad that Bing dared to embark on such an experiment. Trying to be open-minded about new trends, I hope that emojis will find their way and will be more useful in every aspect of life. However, as of now, they are too vague to replace words.

    I wonder, if we start to use emoji as search words, do they become our new key words? How will this affect SEO?