Category:Blog, ADing February 26 / 2019
The moment we talk about web search the word ‘Google’ is perhaps the first to come to mind. Therefore, most businesses work on Google SEO as part of their digital marketing initiatives. And why not, because if this massive search engine can be influenced to send you web traffic, it is believed that other search engines will generally follow suit.
However, ignoring the other search engines that are being used could well mean ignoring a considerable segment of what could be potential customers. In this post, we will consider the second most widely used search engine, Bing.
However, is it worth the time to consider Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for Bing? The short answer is – that is the wise course to take. Let us take a few minutes to consider some aspects of Bing SEO.
We will discuss the following points:
The search engine called Bing evolved from Microsoft’s previous search engines like MSN Search, Windows Live Search, and so on. Yes, it is managed and owned by Microsoft and was launched in 2009. It provides the ability to search for text, videos, and pictures among other things.
Most digital marketing initiatives have the Google search engine in mind, and rightly so. Google is the busiest web search engine. However, it is also good to keep in mind that SEO in Google is quite often a huge challenge. If your business invests all its energies on obtaining SEO in Google, you would be taking on a very risky gamble. Google keeps updating its algorithms. These changes could mean that your website could lose its rankings leaving all your hard work unrewarded. However, if you have also invested some of your resources in ensuring Bing SEO then you would still be able to reach a considerable population while you make the necessary adjustments for Google.
Remember the adage: ‘Do not put all your eggs in the same basket.’
It is also good to remember that if you optimize for Bing then you would be optimizing for Yahoo as well because Yahoo search is powered by Bing. Then there are certain sections of the populace that prefer Bing over Google for their internet searches. This section of potential customers would be totally ignored if you choose not to optimize for Bing.
Bing calls itself a ‘decision engine’ and strives to constantly provide more relevant and practically useful information to users. Ensuring Bing SEO along with Google SEO will ensure that you are able to reach a much wider audience and also provide you with a backup that would serve you well if you happen to lose out on Google rankings.
A number of SEO techniques remain the same for both Google and Bing. The brand name very strongly influences website page ranking in both Google and Bing. Social media interactions with the website also influence ranking. The quality and quantity of backlinks is another aspect that determines page ranking. Bigger brands often have a very high page ranking because they have domain authority backlinks from other reliable websites.
There is nothing relevant and quality content that could pull up the website rankings. Engaging information that is well presented makes a big difference. Then there are on page technical factors that also influence page ranking. The amount of visitor traffic also makes a difference.
The algorithms for Google and Bing SEO operations are largely similar. Both Google and Bing have a form of webmaster tools to analyze your website.
This basically means that if you have optimized your website for Google you have done much of the work involved in optimizing the website for Bing and Yahoo as well. It would only require some adjustments to ensure Bing SEO as well.
As we have already seen Bing SEO and Google SEO have a number of similarities. However, there are a number of fundamental differences. One key aspect is that while Bing is very open about its policies regarding page ranking Google is not that clear. Google also makes frequent changes to its algorithms.
A key difference between Bing and Google SEO has to do with on-page SEO. Google is much more discerning about the context of the page and the information therein. It understands synonyms and takes the context into account. On the other hand, Bing requires the exact keywords both in the content as well as on page titles and meta tags. This means that specific keyword usage becomes much more important for Bing SEO.
The page size is not an issue with Google but Bing only caches about 100K web pages. This would mean that you would need to place the most important aspects of your website within 100K or they would not show up in the search results. In the case of a query that could mean multiple things, Google brings up the most popular websites while Bing brings up the local results. In the case of local searches, Bing provides information about even small local businesses. However, Google provides information on larger and more established businesses since it views them as more credible.
Google bots do not crawl Flash while Bing bots do. This results in Google not being able to interpret sites that use Flash while Bing is able to do so. Google looks out for newer and more popular websites. Bing prefers more official websites such as .gov, .org, and so on. Thus Google provides factual information while Bing would provide more socially relevant information.
Bing also integrates social media into its searches. When you search on Bing you can see if a Facebook friend or a Twitter follower has recommended or rated the company or product you are looking at. It can also search Pinterest boards for pictures.
Since most digital marketing initiatives target Google, Bing is less competitive. Bing has a lower bounce rate. Visitors on the Bing search engine go through more web pages and click on more links.
Carefully considering the similarities and differences between Google SEO and Bing SEO will help you understand how you can optimize your website for Bing SEO. Exact keywords and the skillful use of infographics can surely help with Bing SEO. Cultivating authoritative backlinks and ensuring social media engagement are other factors that go a long way. These are considered in greater detail below.
What are some aspects that would help you with Bing SEO? While links from authoritative domains in themselves help on Google, you have to grow your own link profile with do-follow links in Bing. You need exact match anchor text that contains your target keywords.
Bing’s official commentary on backlinks, from the Bing Webmaster guidelines, states the following: “Links pointing to your site help Bing discover new pages on your site. Traditionally, it is also regarded as a signal of popularity. The site linking to your content is essentially telling Bing that they trust your content.” Bing likes links from relevant and trusted websites such as .edu, .gov, and .org.
They have been around for a long time and Bing feels that they could be trusted. These backlinks help because they bring real users to your website. Bing algorithms can detect reciprocal links, paid links, or link schemes and those from hacked websites and it would only result in your website being delisted from the Bing Search Engine index. While Bing does not thoroughly evaluate each link and its aspects your page should have at least one external website link.
Use exact keywords in headings. Bing looks for exact words and not context or semantics, Use keywords naturally in your text as much as possible. Use keywords in alt tags and meta description naturally.
We have already discussed a number of factors that would affect web page ranking on Bing SEO. Besides the ones discussed above exact domain name match is a key ranking factor for Bing. Good metadata and title will ensure higher a higher click-through rate (CTR) and in turn better Bing search engine rankings.
SEO analyzer is a Bing Webmaster tool that can examine your website. It will identify problems you have with the website and also provide you with suggestions on how you could rectify it. Then there is markup validator which helps the user see which schema and markups appear on the page. The keyword research tool generates keyword suggestions for your content.
We have already discussed a number of factors that influence Bing SEO and what to do about them. However, the core issue always is good content. There is no substitute for trustworthy and authoritative content that is written well and presented in an engaging manner. Ensure that the content is detailed and informative and will be useful to the audience. If it is presented well and easy to understand it is of higher value.
Use multimedia. Bing is concerned about the “aesthetic appearance and functional ability of a website for the end users.” If your website ranks high in searches, it will ensure that there is greater traffic to your website. However, if the content is not engaging users will quickly click out without benefitting you in any way.
Bing rewards good pictures and relevant videos. As discussed earlier Bing is able to interpret sites that use the Flash. Add descriptive alt text to your images. Videos are of great value. All these will ensure a higher rank in Bling SEO.
Besides following through on the suggestions already mentioned with regard to Bing SEO here is one more that could help with optimizing your website for Bing. Use well designed and well thought out schema markups to improve the click-through rate. Schema helps the search engine understand your content and provide results that are rich in information.
Increasing the volume of organic traffic on your website would require that you follow through on Bing SEO. A number of suggestions have already been discussed. Here are a few additional points that have proved very helpful.
Improve your social media shares, and your popular organic rankings will improve. Shares, likes, and tweets are all valuable as they integrate with the search engine. If your business is of a local nature then obtain a local business listing on ‘Bingplaces’. Include keywords based on geographic locations. Besides the above, a good website design, and a short page loading time, as well as easy navigation, are all needed to increase organic traffic with Bing.
Sixty-seven percent of all searches worldwide are powered by Google. Yahoo and Bing together account for about 30% of all internet searches. Bing and Yahoo have an exclusive audience for certain types of businesses.
Bing is here to stay. And not just stay but grow. Bing’s share of paid searches is increasing and trends indicate that it will continue. That clearly highlights the wisdom of ensuring that your website is not only optimized for Google but also for Bing and Yahoo.