Bing recently announced that it is killing off their Bing Shopping service, and replacing it with an innovative new product search system which further combines shopping and advertising within their search results pages. They will continue to offer merchants with both paid and free options to have their products displayed in the new product search system (unlike Google who accepts only paid ads in their similar service).
Once fully rolled out, people who search for a specific product will see the normal results in the center area of the page, but across the top will be a new ‘carousel’ with other similar products. Along the right side will be a product description with reviews, the price and other detailed information. In their announcement they provided the following example. If someone were to search for “Canon EOS 6D,” which is a popular mid to high end camera, they would see the following results page:
At this time the Product Ads are in closed beta through the holidays, after which time the service will be opened up to many other merchants. These ads will appear in both the Bing and the Yahoo search results. Unlike normal ads, the product ads will feature an image of the product in addition to the text in typical ads. These images are only available to paying merchants who want their products featured.
Merchants can add in Rich Captions for free. These captions will allow the merchant to include things like product price, availability information and much more, right within the search results on Bing. This Rich Captions feature will be available in September, and can be configured from within the Bing Merchant Center. You’ll have to opt in to the program by clicking a check box, and any captions used need to be approved by the Bing search team, which may take a few weeks depending on initial interest.