Bing Rankings Need Love Too
December 12, 2013
Google has ruled our ranking efforts for quite some time now, and for good reason. With almost 70% of the search market share, it has had us jumping at its every request for quality, quality, quality. While I don’t think anyone is disputing the fact Google does bring in the most traffic (and quality is a bit of a good thing), it seems Bing may not be one to be ignored either. While 30% can seem like a small piece of the pie, if someone told you could increase your online business and conversions by 30% you would probably pay attention. And it seems as if people are.
I have had more clients ask me about their Bing rankings in the last month than all of my time in internet marketing. While their heavy hitting advertising could be paying off, ( “scroogled” has become my go to expletive) it seems that Bing is taking a bigger stand with their rankings as well. A common theme I have noticed is dramactic fluctuations with Bing, with sites either just completely jumping up to the first few pages of Bing or just completely dropping off altogether. Not so long ago, the rankings between Google and Bing didn’t seem didn’t seem to be so far off from one another. If you were ranking on Page 1 for Google, typically you were on Page 1 for Bing as well. But now just because you have a Page 1 or 2 on Google does not automatically equal a similar result with Bing (you could even be looking at a non-ranking).
Bing is without a doubt trying to define itself as a competitor and making waves were they can. For those tracking rankings on both, the dramatic increases (or decreases) seem to be saying “pay attention, we are here too!” For those of us still trying to figure out the mystery that is Google, adding another piece to the puzzle seems like a deterrent more than anything. A good site is a good site right? So how can two search engines now have two seemingly different ways defining what equals the best? While there is some discrepancy on what Bing likes versus what Google likes (user engagement, social media, and.…keyword stuffing have all been through into the pot) it’s hard to define something that makes them stand apart or wont completely ruin your rankings with Google. So what’s a site that wants decent rankings with both search engines to do?
While it’s still an unfairly quite topic, there does seem to be one consensus: Bing wants you to be good; Google wants you to be perfect. Bing’s focus seems to be good relevant content on the site and playing well with others (aka social media). While these are both strong factors for Google as well, they still place heavy emphasis on back links, site structure and all and all being the best site you can be. If you see a sudden decrease with Bing, I would first check your robot.txt file. There’s a good chance you are indirectly blocking the Bingbot. Next step to get your site set up on Bing Webmaster Tools (which you should do regardless) and take a good look at how it is viewing your site. Bing is known for being pretty transparent so chances are you’ll get some good clues into how to get into good rankings with them. And lastly, for the love of all things SEO, do not keyword stuff. Regardless of what anyone says, this is not good practice for any site. Not only will it most likely ruin any rankings with Google, you’re attempt at picking up any bonus traffic through Bing will pay off.
Elisa Houghtelin is one of the Account Managers at SEOhaus. If you would like to stay up-to-date on all of the latest SEO industry news and tips, you can subscribe to our blog here. Thanks for reading the SEOhaus blog!