Microsoft is still struggling trying to beat Google at their search game, so if you can’t beat them, pay them. That seems to be the tactic that Microsoft is clinging onto. The mega giant software company is still in a drawn out battle, trying to gain market search in the Google dominated field. They have once again started to offer what they call ‘Search Perks’, in which points can be collected and later used to collect on prizes.

But will this work?  On their Live Search Perks site Microsoft describes the perks as:

To earn value for your searches and join the SearchPerks! promotion you must have Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher to participate. Copy this URL and paste it into Internet Explorer:

Sign up for SearchPerks! and start earning tickets towards exciting prizes whenever you search the Web – up to 25 tickets per day. It’s free, easy to use, and your tickets accumulate as fast as you can search.

And because SearchPerks! is brought to you by Microsoft Live Search, you can count on rich, comprehensive search results.

Be sure to sign up before the registration deadline on December 31, 2008—the sooner you sign up, the more opportunity you have to earn tickets!

In addition, Microsoft admits that previous pay for search gimmicks, has not resulted in additional market share. They state that:

On the broader goal of boosting Microsoft’s share of the commercial search business, Savoye said, Cashback has yet to make a meaningful shift in share. “We haven’t seen it move significantly yet,” Savoye said.

PR Director Whitney Burk said that programs such as SearchPerks are still needed to introduce people to Microsoft’s search product.

“We know we have some challenges with the brand and perception,” Burk said. “Simple awareness is still a challenge for us.”

One would think that Microsoft could take to the TV airwaves to increase awareness. I seriously doubt that the average Internet user is even aware that Microsoft has a search comparible to Google, nor do they realize that they can get paid for doing searches.

Do you use Microsoft search? If so, do you do it for the prize money?

Comments welcome.

Search Perks site