While I often focus on Google’s search engine because it draws roughly a third of all searches, Bing is still important for most webmasters. It draws in the second most traffic, and Bing is clearly fighting to gain more of the market. That means we do need to keep up to date with their best practices and guidelines and listen when they share insight.
Bing’s Duane Forrester did just that recently when he shared some thoughts about SEO on the official Bing blog. His statements aren’t radically different from what you would expect from anyone else working in search, but it does give a little insight into how Bing functions. Free SEO News, a regular newsletter, collected the most important quotes.
- Links are still important – “They are still a trust signal that can help ranking. […] The kind [of backlinks] where your site impressed someone enough that they blogged about it, or shared it socially. […] These are best as they allow the engines the strongest confidence that the link is trustworthy.”
- There’s nothing wrong with reciprocal links – “Reciprocal links still have value. Shocked? Don’t be, as the value may not be what you’re thinking. They don’t hold a lot of value in terms of lifting rankings, but they are capable of driving traffic to your site, so a recip link can be useful for new sites in terms of direct traffic, and these links can help us find your content in the first place.”
- Buying Likes, Tweets, or Retweets is useless – “We all want ‘em, and therein lies the problem. Because likes are sought after, people try to sell them. […] Similar to how a link farm operates, like farms exist, promising to supply hundreds or thousands of likes in a short period. Yeah, yeah, they claim to be ‘all natural, totally organic’, etc. Simply put, they are not and are easily seen.”
None of this is groundbreaking of course. It is no surprise to us that we shouldn’t try to cheat Bing or Google and that you can do optimization without spamming. Following the best practices Google and Bing both publicly share with web masters will protect you from all your problems.