Bing is the search engine that has search market share next to Google.
Owned by Microsoft, Bing is prevailing at a faster pace.
Need of Bing SEO
Although Google is the major search engine shareholder, one should not ignore Bing SEO. It has the potential to bring traffic nearer to all the referral traffic you get combined.
It is worthwhile to note that concentrating on Bing SEO also helps you in optimizing your site for Yahoo. Because both Bing and Yahoo search algorithms are nearly same. Nearly all the sites that rank in Bing should also rank in Yahoo. In fact, Yahoo search is now powered by Bing!
Concentrating on Bing SEO increases your search traffic by 30%.
As you can notice in the above infographics, the search share of Yahoo and Bing is great in the USA. So in order to get USA traffic to your blog ignoring Bing SEO may not be a good idea.
According to Shareholic survey, Bing and Yahoo drive less traffic but more engagement. That means users who come to your site from Bing and Yahoo stays on your site for more time. The bounce rate is less and page visits per visitor are more. They offer more engagement with your site.
There is no doubt that Bing and Yahoo grow at a rapid rate and become the competitor of Google in the near future.
After looking at all these stats, I felt like writing about Bing SEO guide.
Bing SEO guidelines
As you all may know that important SEO guidelines include:
- Building quality backlinks
- On page optimization
- Quality content
- Social signals
Bing is not an exception Bing also looks at all the other SEO factors that Google look upon.
Some of the ranking factors of Bing are different.
Let me tell you some of the guidelines by which you can improve your site or blog's Bing presence.
Bing stresses on…
Keyword optimization on-page
If you have your main keyword in URL then Bing would give a boost to you more than that of Google.
Including keywords in blog post URLs helps to a GREATER extent in Bing.
Many say that the concept of keyword density for SEO is gone. But remember that the people who say that only talk by taking the Google into consideration.
However, for Bing keyword density matters a lot.
In Google, high keyword density may lead to penalization of your blog due to keyword stuffing
The place where keywords appear is not a ranking factor for Bing. Nevertheless, placing keywords at the beginning of the title and beginning paragraphs is great for Google SEO.
Keyword domains get a boost
With the Google EMD update, exact match domains and keyword domains tend to rank lower. But that's not the case in Bing.
The domains with keywords in it tend to rank higher in Bing and also to some extent in Google.
But, however, while choosing domain names one should not choose long domains and the domain names which have, dashes or underscores in it. It's both harmful to Bing and Google SEO.
You may all know that improving click-through rates in SERPs helps in getting ranked higher in SERPs. The same also applies to Bing. Bing stresses more and more on CTR.
Higher CTR in Bing results in a greater boost than that Google gives you.
As we have noticed above, Bing and Yahoo offer more user engagement on your blog than any other search engine. This is because there is a great stress on improving CTRs. The search results, which have more CTRs and engagement, come up in Bing SERPS.
Reduce bounce rates
User interaction with the site has been playing an important role in search engine marketing. Google also takes account of the bounce rate while ranking sites or blogs.
Bing greatly stresses on reducing bounce rates and improving user interaction. You can easily notice that most of the high-ranking pages in Bing have a lower bounce rate and hence high user interaction.
Bing stresses the reduction of bounce rates higher than that of Google.
High word count
Blog posts with higher word count tend to rank higher in Bing.
Bing stresses more on word count than Google.
In Google, branded websites or brands tend to rank well, even if they have a low word count. So clearly, we can see that Google loves brands.
However, that's not the case. Bing also loves brands to some extent. But as far as word count is concerned, it will rank any sort of posts with a higher word count and quality backlinks top in SERPs.
Quality of backlinks over quantity
Even if you have a lower count of backlinks, you can rank higher in Bing. The number of backlinks is a less influential ranking factor in Bing. The only thing that matters in Bing is the quality of the backlinks. Even if you have a dozen of backlinks, you can easily rank on top five for your search term in Bing.
No-follow backlinks in Bing flow less trust than that of Google. With Bing, importance is less for no-follow links than that in Google.
Bing gives less stress on backlinks than that of Google. Social signals are strong ranking factors in Bing. Even a site with a low number of backlinks and high social presence can rank higher in Bing.
New sites or blogs with high social presence can rank straight away in Bing.
The backlinks of a site, whose Anchor texts have keywords in it, rank higher in Bing.
Building backlinks only to the homepage seems to be less effective in Bing SEO. You should also consider building backlinks to internal pages. It would give a boost.
Do you know that in Bing external links or outbound links matter a lot? The quality of outbound links from your site or blog should be of high quality or else Bing will penalize you!
Spammy outbound or external links are more dangerous than spammy inbound links that are not in our control.
Bing advises keeping a limit on outbound links on your blog or site. That means curated content cannot rank well on Bing.
You should take special care of outbound links.
Be careful about outbound links. As long as they are relevant and useful they are not harmful. If your blog or site is a link form, then cut it out.
Facebook and other social engagement
Facebook search engine is powered by Bing. That means Bing can easily track the user interaction with the blog or site by considering its Facebook engagement. Including Facebook share buttons in your blog design helps a lot in improving Bing SEO.
Bing stresses more on Facebook engagement than any other social network. Also looks at the quality of social shares if you buy fake likes of Facebook and all you will never get ranked higher in Bing.
It can track the quality of shares, because of its close relationship with Facebook algorithms.
You should not ignore Google Plus, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networks.
Things that give you a boost in Google but not much in Bing
Remember that the strategies that are mentioned below should not be ignored. The below strategies will give you boost both on Google and Bing. However, more on Google.
- Internal linking will give you a greater boost in Google than that of Bing.
- Including LSI keywords throughout your blog post gives a greater boost in Google than that of Bing.
- Including more images in your blog posts gives a greater boost in Google.
- The number of backlinks matters a lot in Google compared to Bing.
- No-follow backlinks also give a boost to some extent in Google compared to Bing.
Bing Webmaster Tools
Like that of Google, Bing also offers Webmaster tools that help you measure the progress and status of your blog or site.
It lets you analyze and record the performance of your blog or site in SERPs. It also lets you take a note on search terms for which you are ranking, click through rates, crawl rate, errors, etc.
The Bing Webmaster tools are more powerful than that of Google Webmaster tools due to the absence of Bing analytics.
In order to help Bingbot increase the crawlability of your site or blog, you need to submit the sitemap of your blog or site to Bing.
By submitting a sitemap, it will be easier for Bing to keep track of fresh content published on your site or blog.
Bing, almost entirely depends upon the sitemap that you submit. Like Google, it most of the times does not index the pages of your site or blog by itself. As far as Bing SEO is concerned submitting a sitemap is crucial.
However, the rate at which Bing or other search engines crawl your site mainly depends upon the uniqueness of your content. More unique content gets indexed almost in 5 hours in any search engines.
So if you wish to get more US Bing traffic, then you need to set the United States in Geo-targeting section of webmaster tools. Setting Geo-target to U.S helps a lot in getting Bing traffic.
You have to be particularly careful about disavowing links. Disavowing tons of links at a single time can negatively affect the rankings of your site.
Bing is stressing and pushing users to implement a schema markup in their sites or blogs. It is also a fact that sites with the schema markup tend to rank higher on Bing SERPs.
You can easily look at the presence of the schema markup under markup validator in Bing Webmaster tools.
The presence of the schema markup helps search engines to implement semantic features, and also know the relationship between entities in your blog or site.
So, almost all the search sites are pushing webmaster to implement the schema markup in their sites or blogs.
Diagnostics and Tools
The overview of the diagnostics and tools is below.
With the Link Explorer, you can check the backlinks presence for any of the URL on your site.
The tool that I loved is Bing SEO analyzer.
It tells you the important SEO things that you need to concentrate on. It highlights the mistakes by previewing the web page of the given URL.
It is clear that improving SEO stuff that Bing suggests you, boosts search engine rankings.
Many of the SEO guidelines apply to both these giants
These are some of the differences between Bing and Google as far as SEO is concerned. But both of these search giants share some of the common guidelines. Following the below guidelines will be helpful for your blog for both of the search engines.
- High quality, unique, insightful content.
- The Quality of backlinks wins over quantity.
- The Quality of social media interaction is important.
- Low bounce rate, and high average page visit duration help.
- Internal linking helps for both.
- Internal and external duplicate content should be prevented. (Bing content removal request form)
- Header tags optimization guidelines apply for both.
Takeaways from this guide
Here are some of the important points that you should take away from this Bing SEO guide.
- Keyword stuffing works to some extent in Bing 😉 (However, you should concentrate on Google, so avoid it).
- Bing favours Social media interaction over backlinks.
- Blog posts with high word count rank well in Bing.
- It gives special attention to the quality of outbound links.
- Bing is dependent on the sitemap that you submit to index your blog.
- On page user interaction, like bounce rate matters greatly in Bing.
- If you have a high Bing SERPs CTR, then you will get an instant boost in rankings.
I can say that Bing algorithms are similar to that of the Google algorithms. Except for some ranking factors, the rest of all the SEO guidelines are same both for Google and Bing.
Both these search engine giants give more importance to the user experience and quality of content. Site Page speed matters a lot in both the search engines.
As I have told earlier optimizing your site for Bing also helps in Yahoo rankings, as both of their algorithms are one and the same.
The Bing's search traffic share is increasing rapidly and expected to grow further.
One should not ignore Bing and Yahoo in their SEO strategies.
Google seems to be more important for Google Plus shares. It indexes content shared on Google Plus faster or even sometimes instantly. But that's not the case in Bing.
- Less-known Way to Move Up in Google SERPs
- Google Ranking Factors That You May Have Never Heard Of
- 101 Blog Writing Tips for Great and SEO Friendly Posts
- Why SEO Experts Shout Out That Page Speed is Important?
Other than these SEO factors all the SEO guidelines for Bing are same as that for Google. Following all the Google guidelines also gives you a boost on Bing and Yahoo.