Bing is becoming a force to reckoned with. Since their Yahoo search alliance last year, Bing has managed to take a combined 30% of the search market in the U.S. The migration of Yahoo search to a Bing back-end on a global scale in increasing that power. Now more than ever, it’s important that webmasters optimize for Bing in addition to Google. To help you in this journey, Bing has released a list of its core SEO principles.
Bing says there are “18 things you need to know about SEO” – although they don’t break it down into a numbered list. Here are some of the most essential principles to hang onto:
Create a good site structure. This can be done through making an XML and HTML sitemap, using an RSS feed, using a strong navigation that declares your site’s hierarchy, and using a robots.txt file to ensure that you page in crawlable.
Be wary of rich content. Bing suggests avoiding Flash and Silverlight for your searchable content when possible; that’s especially significant, as Silverlight is a Microsoft product. If you do use Flash and Silverlight, Bing emphasizes the importance of a “solid downlevel experience.”
Don’t ignore your meta. Use a unique meta title and description on each page. Keep your titles brief and try to use your targeted keyword toward the beginning of said title.
Build links wisely. Don’t buy links, farm out links, or get involved in three-way link trading. Also do what you can to have keyword-relevant anchor text for the links that are sent back to you.
Remember social. Social sharing buttons encourage both inbound links and social presence, both of which are important factors in Bing optimization.
You can check out the full list of Microsoft SEO insights on the Bing Blog.