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SEO: Don't Overlook BING

We haven’t talked about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) in a while and thought now might be a good time to catch-up on what’s new.

It’s recently been reported that Google’s Chrome is now the favored search engine; so if you’re ranking well in Chrome . . . that’s great! But don’t discount having your websites rank well in the other search engines, i.e., Bing (29% of monthly search traffic*),  as it continues to grow and evolve.

While each one of the search engines favor slightly different aspects of a website page, today we’re going to look at some hints to help your website achieve top ranking in Bing.

But before we get to the ‘hints’, you might find it interesting to know that when performing a search on Bing – the results will be different for each person even if the search is the same. This is due to the fact that Bing ranks websites on unique points.

How Bing Ranks

Bing uses the following to rank websites:

1. Authority – good, authoritative original content

2. Keyword match – title and description – with the stress on title

3. Personal preference – individual’s geographical location or preference

4. Social signals/links – use of Facebook, Twitter and Google+

5. Blog – get  a blog for your website

 Now that we understand a little bit about what Bing is looking for, let’s see how to include those feature into our website pages.

Implementing Bing Search Criteria

1. Authority – along with good, original content goes longevity of domain. Bing in particular loves older sites. Don’t have an old domain? Some Internet marketers have found that by converting their ‘newer’ domains to an ‘older’ one gives them a boost in the rankings. (Note: We did not see any statistics as to what age Bing defines as being ‘old’.)

2. Keywords – as with most search engines, the title and description tags are very important, however, with Bing the title tag is rated even higher. Therefore, you make sure to include your most important key words in the title tag on each page.

3. Geographical – make it clear which city or state you pages are written for. If you expect people to contact you via email, phone, or snail mail, make sure your address and phone numbers are predominantly placed on the page. Do NOT use an image file for this information. And, be sure to claim your business listing with Bing to enhance your business profile at http://www.bing.com/businessportal.

Also,  while everyone seems to have a cell phone these days, it doesn’t hurt to have an ‘800’ number displayed throughout your website’s pages –  as doing so  may add implied importance and size to the perception of your company.  Get an ‘800’ number starting as low as $2.00 – with a wide variety of options and features – get details here.

4. Social – has become increasingly important. If you have a personal Facebook page, consider putting up a business page and then install the Facebook/like icon to your website’s pages. And, don’t overlook the value of using a Google+ button to drive traffic.

5. Blog – the most important thing about a blog is maintaining current posts – again, with original information. When you add a new post, it gets pinged, which means that every time you add a post you’re getting indexed faster.

Conclusion

Optimizing a website to rank for both Bing and Google can be like juggling too many balls, but with a little study and applied effort, you should find your website ranking in the top 10 for each. If you’d like more information on current SEO trends and changes, consider a subscription to Planet Ocean – Search Engine News. We’ve been a subscriber since 1997 and have always found their monthly newsletters to be full of helpful, current search engine news.  Get details here.

* as of April, 2012

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