Bing SEO vs Google SEO: The Ultimate Comparison in 2023
Table of Contents
In this post we will explore the following topics:
- 1 Introduction: The Clash of the SEO Titans – Bing vs Google
- 2 The Impact of Other Search Engines
- 3 Unveiling the SEO Algorithms: Bing vs Google
- 4 The Keyword Conundrum: Bing’s Precision vs Google’s Context
- 5 The Backlink Battle: Quality vs Quantity
- 6 Social Signal: Bing’s Emphasis vs Google’s Disregard
- 7 User Engagement: Bing’s Active Users vs Google’s Passive Users
- 8 Our Future Forecast: SEO Trends in 2024
- 9 Conclusion: Is It Even a Question of Bing SEO or Google SEO?
Since the early days of the internet, Google has been a driving force in search engine optimisation (SEO). However, recent developments, including Microsoft’s collaboration with OpenAI to introduce Bing Chat, have started causing a shift in the balance of powers and the question of Bing vs Google for SEO is more important today than ever.
Find more statistics at Statista
The chart above clearly shows Google in the lead, but its dominance is on the decline with Bing notably growing in popularity. Others shown on the chart include Yahoo, Baidu, YANDEX, and DuckDuckGo. So, if you’re a business owner or marketer and have been following these advancements, you may be wondering about the potential of Bing as a competitor to Google. Is Bing worth considering? How does Bing SEO compare to Google SEO?
Our focus in this guide will be to deliver actionable knowledge that can help you tailor your SEO strategy, whether you’re experienced in SEO or just starting out.
We’ll cover several key topics:
- The historical evolution of Bing and Google, from their early days to their current positions in 2023.
- An in-depth look at the algorithms of Bing and Google, uncovering the factors that influence search rankings.
- A detailed comparison of keyword strategies between Bing and Google.
- An examination of the role of backlinks in Bing and Google’s SEO strategies.
- An analysis of the impact of social signals on SEO and how Bing and Google perceive them.
- Insights into user engagement and its influence on SEO performance on Bing and Google.
- A forward look into the future trends and predictions in SEO for the year 2023.
Editor’s Note [14.11.2023]: Our original article, which was published on 6th March 2019, discussed the competition between Bing vs Google. The world has changed significantly since then, with major changes affecting SEO, search engines, technology, and business as a whole. While maintaining the core ideas of our original article, this update offers a detailed comparison of Bing SEO and Google SEO as of November 2023. In this latest update, we’ll examine these two search engines, their search algorithms, and we’ll highlight the distinct features, similarities, and differences between each. So without further ado, let’s jump in.
Introduction: The Clash of the SEO Titans – Bing vs Google
Let’s take a look at Bing vs Google’s SEO strategies for 2023. We’ll compare and contrast the two leading search engines to help explain their unique approaches to online search and SEO. We’ll cover practical insights into their algorithms, keyword strategies, and the role of backlinks and social signals in SEO, but first, we’ll start by exploring the historical developments behind Bing and Google.
The Evolution of Bing and Google: A Retrospective
Let’s step back in time to trace the origins and growth of Bing and Google. Their stories reflect a blend of competition and innovation, shaping the current landscape of search engine technology. This section looks at the fascinating history of these two tech giants.
The Birth of Giants
The story starts in the 1990s, with the early days of the World Wide Web. Google emerged in 1998, transforming the search engine market with its user-friendly interface, fast search results, and pioneering algorithms for deciding which websites to show. Google’s approach quickly set a new standard for search engines.
Bing entered the scene in 2009, launched by software giant Microsoft. It distinguished itself with its visually appealing homepage and a focus on a comprehensive search experience, even though it was a latecomer compared to Google and even others like Yahoo.
The Evolution of Search
Both Google and Bing have evolved significantly over the years, constantly working to enhance user experience and deliver more accurate results, but it’s important to remember that they weren’t the first search engines. Google only really started to take off in the early 2000s.
In recent years, Google has introduced the Knowledge Graph and Google Now, offering direct information and personalised recommendations. Bing responded with features like the “snapshot” and integrated with Microsoft’s Satori knowledge engine to improve the accuracy of its search results.
The Battle of Algorithms
The competition between Bing and Google extends to their algorithms. Google is known for its effective AI-driven algorithm, which has evolved over time to meet global search demands and combat spam and black-hat SEO techniques. This includes the introduction of spam-combatting algorithm updates like Panda and Penguin to refine search results and weed out poor-quality websites.
Bing, though smaller in market share, has made notable improvements in its algorithm, focusing on relevance, context, and user intent to provide meaningful results.
The Impact of Other Search Engines
The evolution of Bing and Google hasn’t occurred in isolation.
Yahoo vs Google
Before Bing, Yahoo was one of the biggest rivals to Google, with Yahoo being the market leader during the late 1990s and into the early 2000s, During this time, Yahoo was considered a leading internet portal and search engine, and often the first choice for many internet users.
Google surpassed Yahoo in market share in terms of search engine usage very early into the 2000s, with Google’s rapid growth and development of more efficient search algorithms allowing it to quickly gain traction and become the market leader. By focusing on providing relevant and speedy search results, along with a clean and simple user interface, Google appealed to an increasing number of internet users.
This marked a pivotal moment in the history of search engines and led to Google becoming the household name we know today.
Yahoo vs Bing
You might wonder why we bring up Yahoo vs Bing given Bing was created in 2009, long after Google had taken over Yahoo.
Well, it’s actually a very important question for those who still want to optimise for Yahoo. As seen on the very first chart above, Yahoo is not quite dead. It might only have 2.69% of the market share but that still makes it the third largest.
Previously owned by Verizon Communications from 2017 to 2021, Yahoo is now owned by Apollo Global Management with Verizon retaining a 10% stake in the new group. What’s more is that Jim Lanzone, former CEO of Tinder, has now been named the CEO of Yahoo.
What this means for the future of Yahoo is unclear but for those who still like Yahoo and want to optimise for Yahoo, it’s important to realise that there was a significant partnership between Microsoft and Yahoo related to search. In 2009, Yahoo and Microsoft entered into a partnership agreement known as the “Yahoo and Microsoft Search Alliance.”
Under this agreement, Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, became the exclusive search technology provider for Yahoo’s search results. Yahoo officially started using Bing’s search algorithm and technology to power its search engine starting in August 24, 2010.
This makes life somewhat easier for those of us in the SEO world as we only need to focus on the differences between Bing and Google.
The Ghosts of Search Engines Past
As well as Google and Bing, a host of other search engines paved the way. Here are some of the key players that have since largely faded into the annals of Internet history:
- WebCrawler (1994): The oldest search engine that is still active today, WebCrawler started as a desktop app before launching its web version. It initially had its own database but now aggregates results from Google and Yahoo.
- Lycos (1994): Born out of Carnegie Mellon University, Lycos was one of the first search engines to receive significant venture capital funding. It still operates today and owns several nostalgic internet brands, including Angelfire and Tripod.
- AltaVista (1995): Known for its no-frills interface and fully searchable, full-text database, AltaVista was one of the most popular search engines in the 1990s. It was acquired by Yahoo in 2003 and went offline in 2013.
- Excite (1995): Excite was one of the first search engines to offer more than just search, providing news and weather portals, an email service, and more. It famously passed on the opportunity to purchase Google for $750,000 in 1999.
- Yahoo (1995): Despite several rocky periods, Yahoo is still a tech giant today, with services like Yahoo News, Yahoo Mail, and Yahoo Finance attracting millions of views per day.
- Dogpile (1996): Dogpile was created out of frustration with the inconsistency of results from other providers. It was one of the most comprehensive search tools at the time, pulling queries from multiple search engines.
- Ask Jeeves (1996): Known for its unique question-and-answer format and memorable mascot, Ask Jeeves (now Ask.com) allowed users to get answers using natural language.
- JumpStation (1993): Often considered the first “modern search engine,” JumpStation used document titles and headings to index web pages but did not provide any form of ranking.
Other Players in the Game Today
While Google and Bing dominate the search engine market, several other players are also making their mark:
- Yandex: The most widely used search engine in Russia, Yandex has many quality indicators or badges it can display alongside search results. It also takes into consideration whether or not a user’s query has local intent and will display regional-dependent results.
- DuckDuckGo: Touting itself as “The search engine that doesn’t track you,” DuckDuckGo doesn’t track, collect, or store any information. It’s slowly gaining steam in the search market.
- Baidu: China’s largest search engine, Baidu is a good option to consider if you have an interest in appealing to the Asian market. However, it censors certain images and blocks pro-democracy websites.
- Ask.com: Ask.com is a search engine designed to answer questions. Unlike Yahoo, which is powered by Bing, Ask.com is its own standalone search engine.
- Naver: South Korea’s second most popular search engine, Naver is a localised search engine, meaning it does not crawl and catalogue the entire Internet.
- Ecosia: Ecosia is “the search engine that plants trees.” For every search a user makes with Ecosia, Ecosia will plant trees in vulnerable areas with the profit the company makes from its searches.
- AOL: AOL, formerly known as America Online, is both an online media company and a search engine. Most of AOL’s traffic is generated from the United States.
- Internet Archive: An Internet Archive is a free archive of books, movies, software, music, websites, etc. Users can sign up for a free account and can upload their content to the archives.
The Impact on Bing and Google
The evolution of Bing and Google was significantly influenced by these other search engines. For instance, AltaVista’s fully searchable, full-text database likely influenced Google’s emphasis on comprehensive search results. Similarly, Ask Jeeves’ question-and-answer format may have inspired Bing’s focus on understanding user intent.
The failures of these search engines also provided valuable lessons for Bing and Google. For example, Excite’s missed opportunity to purchase Google highlighted the importance of recognising potential and making strategic acquisitions.
Today, search engines like Yandex, Baidu, and DuckDuckGo, while small in their overall market share, continue to push Bing and Google to innovate and adapt, ensuring the ongoing evolution of these tech giants.
Unveiling the SEO Algorithms: Bing vs Google
Ever wondered what makes Bing and Google tick and why you see different results in each search engine?
We’re pulling back the curtain on these search engines and unveiling their respective SEO algorithms and will look at factors such as ranking signals, page authority, backlinks, and much more. Of course, nobody really knows the exact algorithms and formulas that Google and Bing use, but we can make educated guesses based on experience and research.
The table below provides a breakdown of what we consider to be the top 25 algorithm ranking factors for Google and Bing, followed by a comparison of each.
Top 25 Google SEO Algorithm Ranking Factors
|Quality Content||Content that is in-depth, covers a broad spectrum of its respective subject, and provides real value to the user.||High|
|Content Length||Longer, more comprehensive content typically achieves higher rankings. However, the optimal word count varies per subject.||Medium|
|E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness)||Google uses E-A-T to evaluate search rankings. It refers to the expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness of the content, the author, and the website publishing it.||High|
|Mobile-Friendliness||Websites need to be optimised for mobile devices as Google uses mobile-first indexing.||High|
|Secure Sites (HTTPS)||Websites should use HTTPS protocol for security. Google has warned webmasters about using the HTTP protocol with sites where users are required to enter data.||High|
|Page Speed||Websites with slow page speeds have a harder time ranking at the top of the SERPs.||High|
|User Experience (UX)||Websites should provide a good user experience, including easy navigation, user-friendly design, and high-quality content.||High|
|Backlinks||The number, and most importantly the quality, of backlinks to a website play an important role in determining the ranking of a website.||High|
|Schema Markup||Schema markup code helps search engines get a better understanding of specific texts such as recipes, reviews, FAQs, events, job posts, local businesses, and more.||Medium|
|Social Signals||Social signals such as shares, comments and re-tweets from platforms like Facebook, Twitter (X), Reddit, and other social networks also correlate with search rankings.||Medium|
|Domain Age||Older domains have a higher chance of ranking well as they are seen as more trustworthy.||Medium|
|Keyword Optimisation||Keywords should be used appropriately in the content, title, meta description, and URL.||High|
|Freshness of Content||Google prefers fresh and updated content.||Medium|
|User Engagement||Metrics like bounce rate, click-through rate, and time spent on site can affect rankings.||High|
|Image Optimisation||Images should be optimised with alt text and relevant file names.||Medium|
|Structured Data||Structured data can help Google understand the content of your page and can result in rich snippets in search results.||Medium|
|Brand Power||The more traffic a website gets from branded searches, the more it will be recognised by the algorithm.||Medium|
|Local SEO||Local search results are ranked by relevance, prominence, and distance.||High for Local Businesses|
|User-generated Content||Reviews and other user-generated content can impact rankings.||Medium|
|Site Architecture||A well-structured, logically organised website helps search engines crawl and index pages more efficiently.||High|
|Internal Linking||Proper internal linking helps distribute page authority throughout the site and enhances user navigation.||Medium|
|Content Variety||A mix of content types (text, images, videos, infographics, etc.) can enhance user experience and engagement.||Medium|
|Site Accessibility||Websites should be accessible to all users, including those with disabilities.||Medium|
|Core Web Vitals||Core Web Vitals measure the loading performance, interactivity, and visual stability of a page.||High|
|No Intrusive Interstitials||Google penalises sites with intrusive interstitials that make content less accessible to a user.||Medium|
Top 25 Bing SEO Algorithm Ranking Factors
|Page Load Time||The speed at which a page loads is a critical factor for Bing.||High|
|User Location||Bing considers the location of the user and the web page’s hosting country and language.||High|
|Mobile-Friendliness||Bing checks if a website is optimised for mobile devices.||High|
|Backlinks||Bing considers backlinks as a sign of content’s credibility and overall quality.||High|
|Freshness||Bing prefers content that is regularly updated and relevant.||High|
|User Engagement||Metrics like click-through rate (CTR) are considered by Bing to evaluate content relevance and quality.||High|
|Social Signals||Bing considers the performance of content on social media platforms.||Medium|
|Keyword Usage||Bing prefers exact matches of search keywords in content, meta tags, alt text on images, etc.||High|
|Domain Age||Older domains are considered more trustworthy by Bing.||Medium|
|Click-Through Rate||The rate at which users click on a page when it appears in search results.||High|
|Social Media Integration||Bing considers the integration of social media into a website.||Medium|
|HTTPS||Bing prefers sites that use HTTPS over HTTP.||Medium|
|Content Quality||Bing prefers high-quality, unique, and relevant content.||High|
|Site Structure||A well-structured site with a clear hierarchy is preferred by Bing.||Medium|
|User Experience||Bing considers the overall user experience, including site navigation and design.||High|
|Site Performance||The performance of the site, including uptime and speed.||High|
|Relevance||How relevant the content is to the search query.||High|
|Local SEO||Bing considers local SEO factors, especially for local businesses.||High|
|Meta Tags||Bing considers the use of meta tags in ranking.||Medium|
|Anchor Text||The use of relevant anchor text in internal and external links.||Medium|
|Image Optimisation||Bing considers the optimisation of images, including alt text and file size.||Medium|
|URL Structure||Bing prefers URLs that are easy to read and include keywords.||Medium|
|Domain Authority||Bing considers the overall authority of the domain.||High|
|Site Security||Bing considers the overall security of the site, including the use of HTTPS and secure protocols.||High|
|Use of Keywords in Domain Names||Bing prefers domains and URLs that include relevant keywords.||High|
Google vs Bing Algorithm Comparison
Now, let’s take a comprehensive look at Google SEO vs Bing SEO in terms of their respective search algorithms.
|Factor Name||Google SEO||Bing SEO||Google Priority||Bing Priority|
|Quality Content||Google values in-depth, broad, and valuable content.||Bing also values high-quality, unique, and relevant content.||High||High|
|Content Length||Google prefers longer, more comprehensive content.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness)||Google uses E-A-T to evaluate search rankings.||E-A-T is not explicitly mentioned by Bing, but quality and authority are important.||High||N/A|
|Mobile-Friendliness||Google uses mobile-first indexing, so mobile optimisation is crucial.||Bing also checks if a website is optimised for mobile devices.||High||High|
|Secure Sites (HTTPS)||Google prefers websites using HTTPS protocol for security.||Bing also prefers sites that use HTTPS over HTTP.||High||Medium|
|Page Speed||Google penalises websites with slow page speeds.||Bing also considers the speed at which a page loads as a critical factor.||High||High|
|User Experience (UX)||Google values easy navigation, user-friendly design, and high-quality content.||Bing also considers the overall user experience, including site navigation and design.||High||High|
|Backlinks & Link Penalties||Google uses backlinks as a sign of a page’s popularity and relevance.||Bing also considers backlinks as a sign of content’s credibility and overall quality. But Bing prefers fewer, more authoritative backlinks and doesn’t penalise buying links as long as it’s not manipulative.||High||High|
|Schema Markup||Google uses schema markup to better understand specific texts and the structure of a page.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact, but schema markup is generally considered good practice.||Medium||N/A|
|Social Signals||Google doesn’t officially consider social signals as a ranking factor.||Bing considers the performance of content on social media platforms.||Medium||High|
|Domain Age||Google tends to rank aged domains better, partially because they tend to have a greater natural authority.||Bing considers older domains more trustworthy.||Medium||High|
|Keyword Optimisation||Google prefers content that uses keywords naturally and in context.||Bing prefers exact matches of search keywords in content, meta tags, alt text on images, etc. Bing also considers meta keywords tag which Google ignores.||High||High|
|Freshness of Content||Google prefers fresh and updated content.||Bing also prefers content that is regularly updated and relevant.||Medium||High|
|User Engagement||It’s believed that Google uses user engagement signals like CTR and dwell time but this hasn’t officially been announced by Google.||It’s widely accepted that Bing considers metrics like CTR to evaluate content relevance and quality.||Medium||High|
|Image Optimisation||Google considers image optimisation, including alt text and file size.||Bing also considers the optimisation of images, including alt text and file size. Bing has a stronger emphasis on multimedia content.||Medium||High|
|Brand Power||Google values the amount of traffic a website gets from branded searches.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|Local SEO||Google uses local SEO factors for local searches.||Bing also considers local SEO factors, especially for local businesses.||High for Local Businesses||High|
|User-generated Content||Google values reviews and other user-generated content.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|Site Architecture||Google prefers a well-structured, logically organised website.||Bing also prefers a well-structured site with a clear hierarchy.||High||Medium|
|Internal Linking||Google values proper internal linking for distributing page authority and enhancing user navigation.||Bing also values internal links with relevant anchor text.||Medium||Medium|
|Content Variety||Google values a mix of content types for enhanced user experience and engagement.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|Site Accessibility||Google values websites that are accessible to all users, including those with disabilities.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|Core Web Vitals||Google uses Core Web Vitals to measure loading performance, interactivity, and visual stability of a page.||Core Web Vitals is not explicitly referenced by Bing, but page load speeds are considered important.||High||N/A|
|No Intrusive Interstitials||Google penalises sites with intrusive interstitials that make content less accessible to a user.||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact.||Medium||N/A|
|Social Media Integration||No evidence yet to show this makes much impact, but social media can drive traffic and indirectly benefit SEO.||Bing considers the integration of social media into a website.||N/A||Medium|
|Domain Authority||Google uses a complex measure of domain authority.||Bing considers the overall authority of the domain.||High||High|
|Site Security||Google uses site security as a ranking factor, including the use of HTTPS.||Bing also considers the overall security of the site, including the use of HTTPS and secure protocols.||High||High|
|Use of Keywords in Domain Names and URLs||Google gives a minor boost to domains that contain keywords, but it’s a small part of the overall algorithm.||Bing prefers domains and URLs that include relevant keywords.||Low||High|
|URL Structure||Google prefers URLs that are easy to read and include keywords.||Bing also prefers URLs that are easy to read and include keywords.||Medium||Medium|
|Meta Tags||Google uses meta tags for understanding content and generating snippets.||Bing considers the use of meta tags in ranking. Bing also considers the meta keywords tag which Google ignores.||Medium||High|
|Anchor Text||Google uses anchor text as a ranking signal.||Bing also considers the use of relevant anchor text in internal and external links.||Medium||High|
|Relevance||Google considers the relevance of the content to the search query.||Bing also considers how relevant the content is to the search query but relies a lot more on meta data.||Medium||High|
Significant Algorithm Differences Between Google SEO and Bing SEO
The most notable SEO algorithm differences when comparing both Google and Bing are:
- Bing considers social signals as a key ranking factor, while Google doesn’t officially consider them.
- Bing prefers exact matches of search keywords and considers the meta keywords tag, which Google ignores.
- Bing prefers fewer, more authoritative backlinks and doesn’t penalise buying links as long as it’s not manipulative.
- Bing favours exact match keyword usage in domain names and URLs and treats this as a high priority.
- Google favours content that uses keywords naturally and in context, whereas overuse of keywords (keyword stuffing) can cause a penalty.
Overall, our experience is that Bing still relies on what many would consider to be old-school SEO techniques, whereas Google is much more nuanced in regards to determining content relevance and quality. In many respects, it’s easier to rank on Bing as the ranking factors are better understood and easier to apply. Google is far more likely to penalise or de-elevate rankings based on factors like buying links and keyword stuffing than Bing, whereas Bing clearly prefers favours keywords in domain names.
A Case Study: Let’s Compare Google and Bing SERPs
The below example is just a random local search but it really highlights the differences and similarities. When searching for “mobile mechanic birmingham”, we can see some common results, such as Yell.com and WhoCanFixMyCar. It would be surprising not to see these sites, given their popularity and relevance to the search. In addition, both would share many of the algorithm ranking factors that Google and Bing have in common, such as backlinks, internal links, keyword optimisation and domain authority.
The outliner which ranks number 1 in BIng is “mobilemechanicbirmingham.co.uk”. The domain name contains all of the search keywords exactly and in the same order. This is a common theme when using Bing compared to Google, but it begs the question, is it a good site and should it be number 1? Let’s explore…
- Firstly, does the domain also rank well on Google? Well, it’s not on Page 1 but it’s not far off ranking at the top of page 2. This is actually quite uncommon as many exact match domains don’t rank well in Google.
- Secondly, is it well-designed and relevant to the search? The design is basic but adequate. The homepage is clearly for an individual mechanic rather than a directory or company, but the call-out fee is clear, and it’s easy to navigate and make contact. The site doesn’t appear to adopt a responsive design but it is mobile friendly.
- Thirdly, does it inspire confidence? This is where the site really falls short. The homepage has next to no content (less than 150 words), there are very few pages on the site and despite stating “Integrity, Honesty and Quality”, there are no visible testimonials, reviews, links to third-party review sites, or mention of social media.
- Finally, does it appear to be optimised for SEO? Depending on your perspective, there doesn’t appear to be any SEO undertaken on the site. The meta title hasn’t been optimised for anything other than the exact match keywords, there’s very little content, no blog, and it has a low Moz Domain Authority of 6/100. On the plus side, the domain is five years old, first registered in 2018 and has 47 linking domains and 554 total backlinks from high-authority news and directory sites.
So, should it rank position 1? Most SEOs would probably say, no. Despite having some backlinks, the site doesn’t tick many of the boxes considered necessary for a high-ranking domain. Looking at Google for the same search results, the equivalent sites are “peterdeemobilemechanic.co.uk” and “jrmotorsmobile.co.uk”.
Both of these share the following characteristics that separate them from “mobilemechanicbirmingham.co.uk”:
- Keyword optimised meta data
- More content (although admittedly still only 200-300 words)
- Testimonials clearly displayed
- Older domains (registered in 2010 and 2015)
- Fewer backlinks
It’s an interesting case study as the keyword “mobile mechanic birmingham” has a good average monthly search volume of 720 but low competition.
The Keyword Conundrum: Bing’s Precision vs Google’s Context
As any SEO knows, understanding search intent and keywords is the lifeblood that fuels the visibility of a website. However, Bing and Google, have different approaches when it comes to keyword interpretation. This divergence creates a fascinating conundrum for digital marketers: should they optimise for Bing’s precision or Google’s context?
Bing’s Precision: The Power of Exact Match Keywords
Bing SEO places a significant emphasis on exact keyword matches. This means that Bing’s algorithm is more likely to favour websites that include the exact keywords or phrases that users type into the search bar within their text. This approach is particularly noticeable in Bing’s treatment of a website’s meta data. Bing pays far more attention to the presence of exact match keywords in places such as the domain name, page titles, meta titles, and meta descriptions.
For instance, if a user searches for “best Indian restaurants in birmingham,” Bing’s algorithm is more likely to favour websites that have this exact phrase in their domain name, URL, content or meta data. This precision-focused approach can make it easier for SEOs and marketers to optimise for Bing, as they can target specific keywords and phrases with a higher degree of certainty.
Google’s Context: The Art of Semantic Understanding
Google SEO takes a more nuanced approach to keywords. Google’s algorithm, especially since the RankBrain and BERT updates, has become adept at understanding the context and intent behind a user’s search query. This means that Google is less reliant on exact keyword matches and more focused on the overall relevance and quality of the content, and how well that content matches the user’s search intent.
Using the same example, if a user searches for “best Indian restaurants in birmingham,” Google’s algorithm will not only consider websites with this exact phrase but also those that provide high-quality content about Indian restaurants in Birmingham. This could include reviews, blog posts, and other forms of content that may not necessarily include the exact keyword phrase but are still highly relevant to the user’s query.
Striking the Balance: Bing SEO vs Google SEO
While Google continues to dominate the search engine market, understanding Bing SEO is also important.
Microsoft’s unique audience and its partnership with OpenAI has provided Bing with an unparalleled opportunity to offer something new and target users with a unique search experience. Tools like Bing Chat and Bing Image Create have brought OpenAI’s impressive AI capabilities to the masses.
The data backs this up. It’s clear that Google has been losing market share to Bing since it took this stance and started to innovate using AI, which highlights the importance of a balanced SEO strategy that takes into account both Bing vs Google SEO.
This means that the keyword conundrum between Bing’s precision and Google’s context presents a challenge for SEOs and digital marketers. The key is to strike a balance that caters to both search engine algorithms. This means creating content that includes targeted keywords for Bing’s precision, while also ensuring the content is high-quality, relevant, and contextually rich to cater to Google’s semantic understanding.
Delivering SEO in 2023 and future years will mean understanding the nuances between Bing SEO vs Google SEO. It’s understanding these nuances that will make the difference between a website that dominates search and one that doesn’t.
Backlinks still remain one of the key factors in establishing a website’s authority. However, as with keyword usage, Bing and Google have different perspectives on the importance and value of these links.
Google has always placed a significant emphasis on backlinks, viewing them as votes of confidence from one website to another. The more high-quality backlinks from high-authority domains, the higher a website tends to rank on Google’s SERPs. However, Google’s algorithms are also complex and emphasise natural link building and penalise manipulation.
Bing values relevance and context in backlinks the same has Google but has simpler algorithms. It’s also somewhat more lenient in terms of penalising manipulative practices. Research shows that Bing also shows a preference for more official top-level domains such as .gov or .edu.
Quality vs Quantity
The battle between quality and quantity is a long-standing one in the world of SEO.
Google’s algorithm, with its focus on backlinks, seems to suggest that quantity matters. Generally speaking, the more backlinks a site has, the better its authority and therefore the higher it will rank. However, it’s not just about the number of backlinks, the quality of those links play an even more important role.
Links from spammy or low-quality sites can harm a site’s SEO rather than help it. With major algorithm updates like Penguin penalising low-quality links, businesses have had their livelihoods impacted and it’s completely changed how the industry approaches SEO for Google. Penguin ran in one form or another between 2012 and 2016, but link spam updates are still commonplace today with Google and can even be rolled out individually or as part of Google’s core updates.
Bing, on the other hand, values backlinks from high-authority, relevant sites, especially those with .gov or .edu domains. This means that a site with fewer but higher-quality backlinks may rank better on Bing than on Google. It’s also far less likely that a website will get penalised on Bing for adopting link-building strategies that Google would consider questionable.
What Does This Mean For SEO?
The key to winning the backlink battle, as with keywords, is to strike a balance between quality and quantity.
While it’s important to have backlinks to rank well on Google, it’s equally important to ensure that these links are from high-quality, relevant sites, and acquired naturally.
Similarly, having backlinks will help Bing SEO as well, although it’s less likely to penalise your efforts. In essence, adopting a link-building approach that works for Google is the safest option. This will help to avoid penalties and ensure you rank well on both search engines.
If you can attract links from .gov or .edu domains, perhaps through unique research or analysis, it’s a win-win for everybody.
Social signals, such as likes, shares, and comments on social media platforms, have become an important part of digital marketing and also SEO. They indicate user engagement and can help search engines understand which content is valuable and relevant to users.
However, Bing and Google view these signals differently.
Ranking Factor vs Influence
Bing considers social signals as a direct ranking factor. It believes that pages that have earned a greater number of likes, shares, comments, and re-tweets are more likely to be relevant and valuable to users. The concept here is very similar to how both Google and Bing consider backlinks as a vote of confidence. Therefore, social sharing and being active on social media is far more likely to result in higher rankings on Bing.
Google, on the other hand, has stated that it does not use social signals as a direct ranking factor. While it acknowledges that social media can help spread content and increase its visibility, it does not consider likes or shares when ranking pages.
Despite Google’s stance, it’s still beneficial to leverage social media within your marketing and SEO strategy.
Social media can help increase a site’s visibility, drive traffic, and build brand awareness. Plus, while Google may not consider social signals as a direct ranking factor, it does consider user engagement and relevance, which can be influenced by social media activity.
For Bing, the strategy is clear: increase your social media engagement – the more likes, shares, and comments your content receives, the better it will rank on Bing.
It’s really a no-brainer to use social media if it makes sense for your business. It’s a great way to supplement SEO with another form of digital marketing. It opens your business up to new channels, audiences, possibilities, and it can have a direct impact on user engagement factors, which we will cover below.
User Engagement: Bing’s Active Users vs Google’s Passive Users
User Engagement in SEO
User engagement is a critical factor in any form of digital marketing and SEO. It refers to how users interact with a website and its content. High user engagement indicates that users find the content valuable and relevant, which can improve a site’s SEO.
Bing’s Active Users vs Google’s Passive Users
Bing users are generally more actively engaged than Google users. They spend more time on sites, view more pages, and are more likely to convert. This means that sites with high user engagement are more likely to rank well on Bing.
Google has a larger user base, but these users tend to be more passive. They may visit a site but not interact with it as much, which can impact a site’s SEO.
Improving User Engagement for SEO
Improving user engagement is beneficial for both Bing and Google SEO. For Bing, the more engaged users are, the better a site will rank. For Google, while user engagement may not be a direct ranking factor, it can still impact SEO by increasing a site’s visibility and driving more traffic.
To improve user engagement, focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that users will find valuable. Think about the type of content being created, for example, would an image or video be better than text? Also, ensure that your site is user-friendly and provides a good user experience. Overall, this will be seen as a positive sign by both Google and Bing.
Our Future Forecast: SEO Trends in 2024
From algorithm updates to AI, we’ve already covered some of the major changes in recent years, but what does the future hold for SEO in 2024?
The Rise of AI and Machine Learning
As we move into 2024, the competition between Bing and Google will continue to heat up. Both platforms are investing heavily in AI and machine learning, and aiming to deliver even more personalised and relevant search results:
AI has played such an important role in 2023, we can only expect this to heat up in 2024. In fact, we’ve gone as far as saying that with the introduction of ChatGPT, 2023 has been an inflection point for AI and technology as a whole, something we’ve not seen since the advent of the Internet itself.
If we think about this for a moment, this means ChatGPT is likely to have an even bigger impact on our lives than Google search, or even search as we know it.
The comparison between Bing SEO vs Google SEO will be more relevant than ever, as the market share gap reduces between each search engine and businesses strive to optimise their websites for both platforms.
Bing has made significant strides in recent years, integrating with various Microsoft products and advancing in AI and machine learning, but Google’s only a few footsteps behind.
With each taking steps to become the “AI-first search engine” (read more below), this could mean potentially some of the biggest changes for SEO that we have ever encountered.
The Importance of Speed and User Experience
User experience continues to be a critical factor in SEO. Even a 1-second delay in mobile load times can reduce conversion rates by up to 20%.
The 2-second rule is an important one. Despite the average load time of websites on mobile devices being around 5 seconds or more, it has been proven repeatedly that the average user will only wait around 2 seconds before bouncing and going elsewhere.
The impact of a slow website is the frustration it causes for your visitors, potentially leading to them dropping off and not returning, but it can also cause issues for search engines trying to crawl your website.
This is one of the main reasons Google released Core Web Vitals as part of its wide Web Vitals and then later the Page Experience update – the goal being to ensure the best-ranking websites are those that load quickly and display properly on a range of devices, allowing for a smooth user experience.
This will only continue to play a more significant role in SEO and ranking algorithms as more websites turn to alternative technologies for fast loading times.
- Headless: Separating the content management system from the front-end, allowing for more flexible and efficient content delivery.
- AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages): A framework for creating fast-loading mobile web pages, reducing complexity and prioritising speed.
- PWA (Progressive Web Apps): Utilising modern web capabilities to deliver an app-like experience, designed to be fast and reliable.
- Single-Page Applications (SPAs): Loading a single HTML page and dynamically updating content as needed, reducing the need for reloading.
- Server-Side Rendering (SSR): Rendering pages on the server before sending them to the browser, improving initial load times.
- Static Site Generators: Pre-building pages at deploy time, resulting in faster load times as the browser doesn’t need to run complex server-side code.
As website owners move away from the traditional style of web development, this will pose new challenges for SEO in both Google and Bing.
The Evolution of E-A-T to E-E-A-T
In December 2022, Google introduced a modification to its E-A-T (Expertise, Authority, Trust) algorithm, incorporating an additional ‘E’ for Experience. The revised E-E-A-T algorithm will now take into account the experience of the author or creator when assessing the quality of content.
This alteration stresses the significance of unique insights and firsthand experience when creating content. Whether that content be created with unique data, unconventional viewpoints, or steered by subject matter proficiency, these insights are expected to remain important to SEO through 2024 and beyond.
The Emergence of New SEO Challenges and Opportunities
Keeping up with algorithm changes will remain a top challenge for marketers and SEO.
In just one year (2021), Google made more than 4,000 changes to search (source – Hubspot). The key is to respond to these changes strategically, staying on top of industry news and waiting until the dust has settled after an update before making the next move.
We can expect new opportunities to emerge. As well as AI, voice and mobile search are becoming more commonplace. By 2026, it’s expected that more than half of internet users in the US will use a voice assistant (source – Statista).
Therefore optimising your site for mobile search and reworking your content to include common questions and answers that users may ask will become even more important.
Conclusion: Is It Even a Question of Bing SEO or Google SEO?
The future of SEO is certainly is shaping up to be an exciting one, with the rise of AI and machine learning, the importance of user experience and accessibility, the evolution of E-A-T to E-E-A-T, and the emergence of new SEO challenges and opportunities.
The choice between Bing SEO and Google SEO is really no choice at all!
On the one side, Google with its sophisticated algorithms, comprehensive search results, and vast user base, clearly has the market share (at the moment). Google’s emphasis on relevance, context, and user intent has set the standard for search engine optimisation. Google’s commitment to delivering high-quality, relevant content makes it the ideal choice for website owners who wish to reach a broad, global audience.
However, Bing is closing that gap and innovating with its new partnerships, AI capabilities, and has proven itself to be a worthy adversary. Bing offers a compelling alternative to Google and has shown that it is committed to delivering personalised and relevant search results, making it a strong choice for businesses targeting specific demographics or regions.
This means that both search engines need to be taken seriously and the comparison between Bing SEO vs Google SEO is more relevant than ever moving forward.
Both platforms have their strengths and weaknesses, and the best choice depends on your specific needs, goals, and personal preferences.
In conclusion, the choice between Bing and Google is not a zero-sum game. The most effective SEO strategy in 2024 will involve optimising your website for both platforms, leveraging the unique strengths of each to reach a broader audience and achieve your marketing goals. Whether you choose Bing, Google, or a combination of both, the key to success in SEO is staying adaptable, keeping up with the latest trends, and continually refining your strategy based on data and results.
Just remember, SEO requires patience and a long-term strategy. Making sure you have a clear understanding of your target audience, goals, and KPIs is critical. Having a solid SEO plan is critical. So is the dedication and hard work it takes to make your SEO plan a success.
If you put in the work and take the right steps, you’ll benefit your SEO regardless of the search engine. Never stop learning, the future of Bing SEO vs Google SEO awaits!« Back to Glossary Index