On December 13, 2017, Harry Shum, executive vice president of AI and Research at Microsoft announced new Intelligent search features in Bing with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. It is slated to deliver more comprehensive and complete information, give people answers quicker, and enable people to interact more conversationally with Bing search.

AI has been a part of search technology since the beginning, using machine-reading comprehension to examine billions of documents to understand the web and help people more quickly and confidently get the answers they are searching for.

Microsoft’s commitment to infusing AI into its products is pushing Bing’s machine learning capabilities to push the industry in delivering more Intelligent search. Harnessing this data while using machine learning techniques allows Bing to deliver more personalized consumer experiences and advertisers to make deeper consumer connections.

3 New Bing Intelligent Search Features

  • Intelligent Answers
  • Intelligent Image Search
  • Conversational Search

Bing’s new Intelligent search features should help people save time and money. The new intelligent answers feature will answer concrete or factual queries with a summary and confirmation from many sources, rather than just one, including different perspectives from valid sources at the top of the results page. If there are multiple ways to answer a question, a carousel of summarized answers, will appear, saving people time from searching one blue link to another.

An important element of intelligent answers is bringing together different sources of information to help people make decisions. This week, Bing also announced a new partnership with Reddit, an online community of 330 million monthly active users, to bring information from Reddit users, which generates 2.5 million comments daily to Bing.

Conversational search is increasing in popularity with people using personal digital assistants like Cortana, Siri and Alexa. Bing heard from users that search would be easier if it could complete people’s sentences. With experience in web scale mining of documents and powering Cortana, Bing has created a way to search that is a little more interactive and can build on peoples’ previous searches to deliver the best answer. Now when people search for specific topics like technology and sports, if needed, Bing will ask clarifying questions to better refine the search.

Harry Shum also shared in more detail, Bing’s advanced image search. Bing’s image search leverages AI through computer vision and object recognition to give people more ways to find what they’re looking for, allowing people to search within an image to find related products.

The infusion of AI into Bing search goes beyond search queries and results to helping advertisers, agencies and small businesses connect to the customers who matter to them.

Intelligent Search & Advertising

Bing is reported to reach over 500 million searchers around the world and combines search history with other signals like Microsoft ID, domain preferences and product preferences to create Audience Intelligence Graphs of user behavior.

Harnessing this data using AI and applying machine learning, enables Bing to deliver intelligent and personalized:

  • Audience targeting
  • Campaign optimization tools
  • Customized ad experiences

Bing’s In-market audience targeting uses predictive intelligence to identify people who have shown purchase intent across different verticals and product categories. Bing has announced this greater level of targeting has produced promising results for advertisers, with increases in CTRs of 28% and conversion rates of 48%.

Through Dynamic search ads, Bing identifies searchers intent and creates an ad to take advantage of those searches and sends the person to the most relevant page on the advertiser’s site.

With auto-bidding, an optimization tool, Bing can fully manage customers’ bids in real time, based on a broad set of useful platform signals, optimizing an advertising campaign based on advertiser objectives such as enhanced CPC, maximize clicks and conversions under budget constraints.

Microsoft is putting a focus on chatbots with the Azure Bot Service. Bing reported there are over 240,000 developers who have registered to build bots with the framework.

These chatbots can be used in Bing search results as well as promoted to people through Bing chatbot extensions, recently announced as a pilot program to Bing advertisers. Chatbots create opportunities for advertisers to make richer consumer connections by serving up relevant and helpful experiences in Bing search.

Microsoft and Bing are pushing to deliver on more Intelligent search, utilizing AI and machine learning for more relevant customer experiences and personalized advertising on the Bing Network. Advertisers and agencies will benefit from the advancements that will influence search going forward and its role in growing consumer connections.