How big is your allegiance to a particular search engine?
Mine, not so big. So when I learned that Microsoft is actually paying people to use Bing (through a thread on MMM’s forum) about a year ago, the switch was a no brainer for me. I consider it free money, since I have to use a search engine regularly no matter what.
Wait, you can get paid to use Bing?
Pretty much, yes, Bing pays you to use it. Through a program called “Bing Rewards”, Microsoft pays you to use their search engine. It will not turn you rich overnight, but, as people mentioned to me a couple time, if you search on the internet quite regularly (most of us do), this basically gives you a free Amazon gift card every other month. Other have said “this pays for my hulu subscription”.
Now, Bing rewards does not actually pay you money, but gift certificates for various partners. Notably Amazon, Skype, Xbox, Hulu Plus, and a bunch of others.
There are several “levels” on Bing rewards: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. Gold is the most interesting one as once you reach the gold status, redeeming gift certificates costs you less points. For example, a $5 Amazon gift certificate costs 525 points. Once in Gold status, the same gift certificate costs 475 points. You can reach that amount of points withing a month, a month and a half, just by using your search engine as you always do. I’ve computed that I accumulate about 200 points a month without any specific effort.
Points are earned simply by searching, like you would regularly do, using Bing instead of google. 2 searches give you 1 point, up to 15 points a day. Searching on a mobile device can give you 10 additional points per day, again with 1 point every 2 search.
In addition, the bing rewards dashboard gives you additional opportunities to get more points, with a few effortless games here and there. After 1 year of use, I find that the bing dashboard, with its games and interesting search suggestions, is a great “time waster” while I’m having my morning coffee.
When all is said and done, it is fairly easy to accumulate enough points every 2 months for a $5 gift certificate at Amazon, or a month of hulu plus subscription. Have your significant other switch to bing as well, and you’re probably getting double the points.
I am of course not saying that being paid $5 a month for performing 1000 searches is a good wage! This is useful only if you were going to be searching on google anyway. You’re doing something that you would usually do for free, and are getting paid to do it. I’m seeing it as a nice bonus.
How do Bing’s search results compare to Google?
To be honest, I’m so used to searching with google, that Bing’s search results put me off regularly. For tech-specific searches (programming, etc…) I have found that google’s algorithm is much, much better. But in general, Bing returns the results I want, and I rarely use google nowadays.
Only caveat to this, is that you need to be a US resident in order to join Bing rewards. They’ll check your address and IP when you subscribe, and send you SMS confirmations on your (US) phone before you can redeem your rewards.
Where do I join?
If I’ve convinced you, please use my link to join Bing rewards. If you do and you reach Silver status, I’ll get additional points. Thanks 🙂