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I don’t know why I care so much about my Klout score. But today I was really frustrated that my friend Dana’s Klout score was two points higher than mine—after all, her Klout bio is “Shorty want a thug.” Surely, I can have a better Klout score than someone with a “shorty want a thug” bio, right? So I used Klout’s page tagging tool, which allows you to demonstrate your influence outside of Klout’s integrated social media options. The only problem is, the page tagging tool relies on a Bing search—not a Google search. And dammit do I hate Bing.
But despite my hatred for the TJ Maxx of search engines, I do think that optimizing your website for Bing is a good idea. According to Bing, it’s easier to get ranked high in Bing because most people focus on optimizing for Google. And with Bing’s integration in Windows 8 and Windows Phone, it’s very likely that Bing-use will rise in the near future.
Since I last blogged about optimizing your site for Bing, the search engine has published its Webmaster Guidelines—allowing us to better understand the best practices for Bing SEO. I read through all of Bing’s Webmaster Guidelines because I have no life and spend most of my free time organizing my Hugh Grant DVD collection.
Here are my takeaways:
Social Media Is Important for Ranking on Bing
If you ever had doubts about the importance of social media for SEO, here it is straight from the horse’s mouth:
“If you are influential socially, this leads to your followers sharing your information widely, which in turn results in Bing seeing these positive signals. These positive signals can have an impact on how you rank organically in the long run.”
To increase your social media influence, Bing recommends enabling social sharing on your website. You can do this by adding links to your social media sites in a visible place on your website, or by adding a social sharing widget to your blog:
Bing’s emphasis on social media is also apparent in its social sidebar, which incorporates what your friends have shared on social networks off to the right hand side of your search results. According to Bing’s blog, the social sidebar feature makes it easier to “find people who are relevant to your search based on what they’ve shared, publically blogged, or tweeted about.” The social sidebar incorporates posts from Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, and Klout.
Of course the takeaway here is that if you’re not getting serious about social media for your business yet, you should be. We understand that most small business owners don’t always have time to compose clever, 140-character mini masterpieces multiple times a day (or even a month), so we can handle your social media marketing for you.
The Importance of Backlinks for Bing SEO
While the importance of backlinks for SEO is nothing new, backlinks are especially important when optimizing your website for Bing. In Bing’s Webmaster Center FAQs, Bing dedicates a lot of time discussing the importance of quality inbound links for ranking—emphasis on the quality, not the quantity.
It also appears likely that Bing actually penalizes sites that have links from low-quality sites. In fact, Bing released its disavow links tool months before Google did. Bing’s disavow tool (accessible through Bing Webmaster Tools) allows webmasters to flag incoming links from websites that you don’t want to be associated with:
“This tool simply allows webmasters a way to alert us – a signal if you will – to the fact they don’t support a particular link (or group of links) pointing to their site. Whether from negative SEO, an old paid link effort they’d like to distance themselves from, or whatever, the tools allows them to tell us how they see the link, essentially.”
Bing recommends generating high-quality backlinks through blogging, press releases, forum postings (hard to believe this made the list), industry associations, and more. Most importantly, Bing makes it clear that “paying for or participating in non-relevant link exchange schemes will not improve your page rank with Bing, and in fact, it could very well hurt it.”
Content Is Key for Ranking in Bing
The more content on your page, the better its chances of ranking in Bing. If your page doesn’t have a lot of content or is mostly ads, it probably won’t rank well on Bing. Additionally, Bing warns against duplicating content across multiple URLs.
By generating interesting and relevant content, you can also expect to increase the number of social shares and backlinks to your website—further improving your Bing rankings.
If you’d like to improve your rankings on Bing, increase your Web traffic, and generate more online leads, contact Blue Corona. If you’d like to help me increase my Klout score, follow me on Twitter. I promise I tweet only the most interesting of events:
About The Author: Blue Corona is a data-driven online marketing company with offices in Gaithersburg, MD and Charlotte, N.C.
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