UK Search Engine Market ShareI just don't understand Bing in the UK - they have this huge opportunity to compete with Google and they shoot themselves in the foot by handing over control to a third party. I talked about Bing and search in the UK here but now they've messed up their Local offering too.

Did they learn nothing from Yahoo Local? Yahoo ran their Local business listings through Infoserve. They made businesses pay to be included and turned it into no more than another form of online Yellow Pages.

By doing this, Yahoo UK let Google march away and dominate the UK local market with their free Google Places for business listings.

So Bing had an amazing opportunity to follow their American branch and produce a proper Bing Places for Business in the UK.

But instead they hand over control to Nokia. Their way of doing things is called here.com/primeplaces.

What happened to Bing Local?

If your place of business is in the UK, Canada, India or Germany, HERE PrimePlaces lets you add your business on both HERE and Bing Maps. Now you only need to claim or add your business once for it to appear on multiple services.

So, you create an account and add your business. And then you have to wait for a postcard verification. This took over two months to finally arrive!

And, having plugged in the number given, I still can't see my listing live on the site several weeks later.

It is extremely frustrating.

We need a credible alternative to Google to make that giant play fair.

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