The complicated relationship between SEO and the search engine, doesn’t only regarding Google. Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, also has a complex attitude towards the practice of optimizing websites. In the end, both Google and Bing carry the same message: Focus on the searcher, not the engine!
To make this topic a bit clearer and understandable, Bing’s Duane Forrester released recently a blog post discussing about the practice of SEO from Bing’s eyes.
The post’s nerdy title (“Does Bing like SEO? You bet your ahrefs we do”) is pretty misleading and inaccurate because as Duane explains, they don’t REALLY like ALL SEO (bring me back my ahrefs!). However, besides the title it is actually a pretty good blog post that get into some specific optimization practices.
From a general perspective, Duane is stating very clearly that SEO suppose to improve the website from the VISITOR’s point of view. Keeping a proper on-page optimization factors can only ASSIST with rankings but a website must NOT relying on these factors by themselves to rank well.
In fact, Duane is saying that even websites with poor SEO could have high rankings resulted from other signals. He mentions specifically social signals as a ranking booster, again, as he already stated in the past that quality social sharing is a signal for website’s authority.
After we establish the realization that Bing thinks that SEO is somewhat of an assisting practice, let’s go over some of Duane’s specific SEO suggestions:
- H1 Tag- Suppose to help the user and the search engine understand better what content there is on the page.
- URL- Duane suggests to create short and clean URLs. Keywords on the URL can count as a “small win”.
- Meta Description- Should be about 160 characters long and suppose to allure the searcher to the page based on its content. Failing to do so will result an auto-fill by Bing.
With this post, Bing is basically aligning with Google’s intricacy approach of “We love SEO! Well, parts of it while we really hate the rest”. However, while Google is about to take an active action against sites abusing SEO, it looks like Bing is taking a more passive approach and it’s still on the fence.
The question is, for how much longer?