Despite the fact that the internet has only been around for a few decades, it has completely revolutionized the way we interact and do business. It has become a normal part of our everyday lives, so much so that going online to look up information has become second nature to anyone who has access to the internet. One of the things that have made the internet such an easy tool to use are search engines. They are the software that enables us to sift through millions of pages related to our search query in seconds and find the most relevant pages. However, it seems that when it comes to search engines, the majority only looks at Google. After all, it casts a big shadow over other search engines that trail far behind in users.
Regardless of this massive popularity, there are some SEOs who believe focusing on other search engines can bring about a lot of benefits. A good example of this is the second most popular search engine – Bing. While optimizing for the second biggest search engine might sound counter-intuitive, many say that optimizing for Bing can bring about positive results.
Reasons to Rank on Bing
Diversifying Online Presence
While Google is the leading search engine in the industry, it is not always the most stable environment for websites. Google’s mission is to strike a balance between great user experience and quality information. They do this by continuously keeping a lookout for ways to improve their services and ranking algorithms. While they have good intentions at heart, these algorithms sometimes can completely alter SERPs. Pages that once enjoyed high ranks can find themselves dropping to the second, third, or even tenth page in the results. Focusing on hitting the mark for Bing’s algorithm provides you with a source of traffic should the worst happen on Google.
Transparency Surrounding Ranking Factors
When it comes to ranking on Google, it is usually a challenge to figure out its ranking factors and secure a high position. We know that there hundreds of rules that cover everything from the content itself to technical factors like speed and user experience. While some blogs and videos offer advice and insights into what is going on, there are no clearly laid out rules for ranking factors. The good news with Bing is that there is a lot less mystery surrounding ranking factors. In fact, you can get a clear image of what Bing wants from you by visiting Bing Webmaster Guidelines and going over their lists. In addition to that, they even offer Bing Webmaster Tools that you can use to improve your website to their liking.
Rank on Yahoo As Well
A great reason to invest in Bing optimization is the fact that you get a two for one deal – Yahoo and Bing! In 2009, when Bing was created by merging MSN search and Windows Live Search, it struck a deal with Yahoo to power all of Yahoo searches. This deal lasted until 2015 when it was altered, and the terms changed into powering the majority, and not all searches. While Bing does not cover all Yahoo searches, it still handles the vast majority. What this means for businesses and webmasters is that optimizing for Bing helps them rank higher on Yahoo search results as well.
Many businesses overlook the power of the second most popular search engine. Sites that consider Bing ranking factors, as well as Google’s ranking factors, have access to a search engine with a lot less competition and a pretty decent user base. Properly optimizing pages and content ensures that your content marketing strategies perform well across the board. This is actually one of the main reasons why Bing is a good investment. The level of competition on Bing is a lot less than that of Google, which means that it is much easier to secure a higher spot on Bing SERPs.
Bing is a Big Player in Voice Searches
There is a lot of news about voice search becoming more prevalent in recent years. With the increase of mobile devices, people are getting accustomed to performing voice searches whenever possible. The convenience of speaking over typing is quickly catching on. A lot of updates are being made and introduced to adjust to the increase of voice searches. While Google has made massive strides in this field, it seems that Bing has secured its corner of the market. Voice assistants like Microsofts Cortana and even Amazon’s Alexa use Bing to generate search results. This means that all windows users and all Alexa users that want to perform voice searches are doing so through Bing.
Incorporates Social Media
While Google’s search engine rankings do not consider social signals important, the second largest search engine does. This means that companies and search engine marketers that optimize for Bing can get a lot more out of their digital marketing efforts than they initially thought. Combining the best SEO practices and social media marketing can help your ranking in Bing search results. This means that simply having a strong social media presence can increase organic search traffic, user engagement, and lower your bounce rate. Just remember that the key for success on social media is engaging content (copy, images and video) that offer value and inspire action.
Beneficial for Smaller Local Businesses
Bing can be an excellent way for local businesses to reach a wider audience. When someone looks for a service, they are usually interested in finding the best service in their area. A testament to this is the fact that local searches have been on the rise for a long time now. Most searches conducted are looking for local services or information. This was evident from the popular “near me” search query that has exploded on all search engines in recent years. Out of these searches, the majority will result in a user visiting a store or location they found in SERPs. Thanks to this rise of local searches, search engines such as Google and Bing have tailored search results to factor in user location when possible.
The presence of location-based modifiers, allows both search engines to display a map of the user’s area with pins showing relevant locations to their search query. The difference is that Google displays the user’s immediate vicinity while Bing provides more options by showing a slightly broader view of the surrounding area. This local vs. hyperlocal pattern can also be seen in results for local searches. Google’s SERPs will showcase the top listings in the immediate vicinity, while Bing’s listing showcases relevant listing from a wider radius. Bing shows a greater number of small businesses while still offering people local search results.
Businesses that want to improve local SEO and take control of their business listing can do so by going to Bing places of business. The step-by-step guide will show you how to set up your online presence in a matter of minutes.
Reaching More People in Your Area
If you are reading this, you are likely an English speaker in the Western world. This means that you are probably looking to reach people in your country unless your business deals internationally. If this is the case, then optimizing for Bing is an excellent strategic move. While Google dominates the international scene with almost 90% of the market, its market share in the Western world is not as overwhelming. Countries such as the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom have a decent number of Bing users. If you can optimize for Bing, you will be able to reach more of your target market.
Expand to Another Demographic
A lot of tech-savvy individuals tend to go straight to Google when conducting searches. This includes a lot of younger people that are exposed to technology early on. However, many people in their 30s and onward are not too concerned with using Google at all costs. They simply prefer to use Bing as their search engine because it is the default on their device, and it offers a good user experience. Taking Bing ranking factors into consideration when optimizing a site means that you are much more likely to reach this more mature and established audience.
Some Report a Lower Bounce Rate
While Bing holds second place in the industry, many SEOs say they have better results on Bing when it comes to traffic. It appears that a smaller number translates to a more engaged audience and better quality traffic. This could be seen in metrics such as a lower bounce rate, increased page visits, time spent on site, click-through rate, and even subscribers. While this might oppose reports that Bing has way less traffic, it might just be a case of optimization or even industry. There is no way to find out exactly what factors affect Bing traffic; the only thing we can do is create quality content and pay attention to SEO guidelines for Bing.
Not a Hassle
Those that are serious about ranking and are interested in investing time and resources into improving their sites will be glad to know that SEO for Bing can go hand in hand with Google’s SEO demands. While there are definitely some differences in Bing and Google algorithms, they have a lot in common. Things like quality content, well-placed keywords, mobile-friendliness, great user-experience, technically optimized sites, and structured data can help you rank better on both search engines. If you are tactical in your approach and cover all the bases, you can increase your rankings on one search engine, and not negatively affect the other.
Bing is a lot bigger than a lot of us tend to think. Those that ignore the power of Bing are missing out on the potential benefits that the website can bring. If you are not sure how to diversify your approach for both Google and Bing, then it might be a good idea to reach out to professionals that can assist you. If you are interested in our technical optimization and content creation services, then contact us today!