If you are planning to reach a broader market and expand your current target audience, then this guide to setting up Bing Webmaster Tools is the solution you are asking for.
Let me tell you why.
More often than not, digital marketers and web owners focus so much on Google Search that they forget about other search engines.
But the reality is, there is a massive volume of people who use other search platforms such as Bing and Yahoo. Take this report as an example. According to a study published in Atilus, 1/3 of desktop searches are from Bing. And its users’ demographics are typically professional parents within the age bracket of 35 to 64 years old. Not only that. A total of 33% of its users earn $100,000 yearly too.
If your niche suits the mentioned demographic, then there is a high chance that you are losing considerable amounts of potential buyers. Not good!
That said, I believe your decision to integrate your site with webmaster tools is the best marketing strategy you will make before 2019 ends. It is especially true if you are looking to expand your reach and your target audience.
So what exactly is Bing webmaster tools?
What is Bing webmaster tools?
Previously known as Bing Webmaster Center, Bing webmaster tools is one of the many free Microsoft tools use for search engine optimisation—particularly for Bing. Essentially, it allows web owners to submit their sites to Bing index crawler to improve its ranking on SERPs.
Apart from that, webmaster tools also let users to check and troubleshoot a few elements of their webpages such as the following:
- Submission of new URLs
- Submission and ping tools
- Sitemap creation
- Crawling and indexing of their website
- Website statistics
- New content
- Consolidation of content submission
- Community resources
As you can see, webmaster tools cater to all crucial issues of SEO. And just like its counterpart, it provides comprehensive data marketers and site owners can utilise to enhance their marketing efforts further.
Read more about how to increase website traffic with SEO.
Why is it important?
There are various reasons why many prioritise Google when it comes to search engine optimisation. However, let’s try not to forget that Yahoo, Bing, and other search engines exist too.
Don’t focus on one search engine only. Make sure that you look at opportunities to bring traffic to your site.
If you are still not convinced yet, here are a few more reasons why why you should set up your account in Bing webmaster tools.
1. Bing is less expensive. For pay-per-click advertisers, Bing Ads is a perfect alternative for Google Adword’s continuous price lift. A 2017 report conducted by iProspect stated that CPC or cost-per-click is now pricier compared to previous years. And that it will continue to rise! In fact, Mobile Ad costs 17% higher in the first quarter of 2017.
If you are having a tough time budgeting your money for advertising, try to replace Google with Bing. The platform is also a great alternative to give you a better organic search.
2. Low competition on Bing. Ironically, the very reason why marketers often neglect Bing is also the best excuse not to overlook it. It is because the small percentage of search volume it accumulates means you will have low to no competitions on Bing too.
According to a study in the US, almost 63% of search volume (desktop only) goes to Google while Bing has 23%, and Yahoo has 11% only. If you switch your SEO efforts based on Bing’s algorithm, there is a high chance that you could get better organic traffic.
Apart from that, Bing provides results in a shorter timeframe compared to Google, which typically takes 12 months and more. The platform has small numbers of websites competing for the SERPs first page. As such, it is easier and quicker for Bing to crawl information coming from those pages and index them.
3. It’s search engine provides transparent ranking factors. Believe it or not, Bing provides more comprehensive data about their ranking factors, unlike Google. The platform allows—of course, by setting up Bing Webmaster Tools—web owners to check and learn the crucial SEO elements to rank better.
As a matter of fact, Bing provides applications designed to help webmasters optimise their pages and content. They have an SEO Analyzer and SEO Reports that give users in-depth reports and data as well as suggestions on how to enhance a site’s ranking.
Why does setting up Bing webmaster tools matter?
Getting started with Bing webmaster tools can be a little bit tricky for beginners, especially if you are more familiar with Google’s Search Console. But don’t fret!
In this section— from what you will earn by setting up Bing Webmaster tools to how to use it—I will discuss everything you need to know about the it.
What data can it track?
The SEO tool offers a wide array of features that cater to every webmaster’s needs. Whether it is a tiny detail or a pillar data, the app provided individual device for each to help you improve your search engine efforts.
Having that said, let’s start with the main and most used features.
1. Unique keywords to use. Of course, search queries from Google, Bing, and Yahoo are all different. And since the plan is to leverage your marketing efforts on Bing, you have to get the exact key phrases folks typed in its search bar.
That is when Bing keyword research tool enters. Fortunately, the platform has a feature (which is incorporated into webmaster tools) that lets users search keywords people type to get info from Bing. And compared to Google Keyword Planner, this one looks dull and old. In fact, it does not have all the features Google’s keyword app has.
But it doesn’t matter. What’s important is that you have accurate data on Bing’s search queries. Also, you can find it under the Diagnostics and Tools category.
2. Your page’s mobile-friendly rating. Just like Google, Bing penalizes sites that are not user-oriented and mobile-friendly. To avoid that, you can use Bing’s mobile-friendly test tool.
The program is not as advanced and well-detailed as its Google counterpart. Still, Bing’s algorithms vary. As such, it would not hurt if you try and see if your webpage’s loading time fits the search engine’s requirements.
You can find the feature under the category Diagnostics and Tools. Just enter your page’s URL and then click the ‘analyze’ button. However, if you encounter an error, click the orange buttons. It will direct you to a page where you can see more data regarding the mistakes.
3. Your site’s traffic. Bing Webmaster Tools included a feature wherein users can see data concerning the traffic coming through their domains (both from Bing and Yahoo). The program provides a report regarding which keyword that traffic came from. You can also find the page traffic feature under the category Reports and Data.
4. Disavow links. As primitive as Bing Webmaster Tools can be, the platform will still require you to disavow links to maintain high-quality backlinks manually. You have to tell Bing by adding links and domains into the program, and then click the Disavow Button.
Take note that you can only do that to dofollow links. Nofollow links, on the other hand, are automatically ignored, so no need to worry about that.
You can see the tool under the category Configure My Site.
Bing Webmaster tools render small yet useful features too. Here are some:
- Block URL. It allows users to block a specific URL from BingBot tool.
- Inbound links. This tool will provide you an extensive data concerning the number of links pointing to your webpage. You use the report to check the quality of your backlinks or when you plan to leverage your link building campaign.
- Crawl control. This feature will let you decide how often you want Bing to crawl your site.
- Geo-targeting. This function lets users identify the state, country, or region they plan on targeting — an excellent tool for campaigns that target a specific area or place.
- Site move. This feature will let Bing know your new address in case you change your URL.
How to Verify Bing Webmaster Tools
Step 1: Go to Bing webmaster tools and create your own account. If you do have a Microsoft account already, then you are good to go. If not, you can opt to use your Google or your Facebook account to sign up.
Step 2: Once you get inside the application, look for a search bar and type your site’s URL into it. After that, click the Add button.
Step 3: Next, specify the exact location of your XML sitemap. Then click the Add button again.
Step 4: Lastly, verify your website using the following options:
- Add a meta tag into the header of your website’s homepage.
- Download the file BingSiteAuth.xml and directly upload it into the root folder of your page.
- In your DNS, you can add a CNAME record.
Putting it all together
It is understandable why marketers prioritise Google. However, let’s not neglect that Bing and Yahoo still exist too. It is especially true if you are looking to expand your target market.
You have to take note that not leveraging your SEO efforts in both search platforms can lose you considerable numbers of potential customers. So, perhaps this is the time you begin setting up Bing webmaster tools and maximize your marketing campaigns?
If you have any questions or any feedback, please leave them below and I will be more than happy to help. Hope you enjoyed reading this!