Digital marketing and SEO consultants always preach in seminars about how to work with Google, since it’s the number one source of Internet traffic. Just as important, however, are social media channels and other search engines.
Why Other Search Engines Are Important
Two of the most powerful competitors to Google in web and mobile search are Siri and Bing. Think about how people search – often it’s on a smartphone while leaving the office or while running errands. For local businesses, it’s vital to be seen on more than just desktop web searches at home.
Major search engines are increasingly directing users to geographic-based searches and algorithms favor websites with geographic tagging, including listing City, State, Region, and Country for the business and any photos, blogs, videos, and other site content. This helps users find what’s available to them.
Casting the largest possible net to draw the most traffic means registering a local business website with Google, Apple, and Bing. In doing so, the business and its website can be listed in search results anytime someone uses any mobile device to search for related businesses, including hands-free voice searches, which don’t always rely on Google for iOS and Android devices.
The Power of Bing
Bing is very much seen in the tech community as the Internet Explorer of Internet search engines. It is important, however, because it’s backed by Microsoft money, and it powers Yahoo and Xbox searches. This is a huge net of searches targeting several key demographics.
Speaking of Xbox, the Xbox One has cameras installed that include facial recognition and can even tell what you’re looking at. This camera even runs while the console is off. Between Samsung, Microsoft, Apple, Google, AT&T, Verizon, and Facebook, tech- and data-based companies can monitor people at all times.
While this scenario may be scary to the tinfoil hat conspirators and SJW’s out there, in business, this leads to better data to refine sales techniques. It means that local small businesses can use automation and technology to compete with global conglomerates.
In order to do so, entrepreneurs need to automate their web presence and marketing as much as possible, and this is done by registering with the major search engines. There’s enough SEO consultants pushing Google, so here’s how to set your local business up for Bing.
Register a Local Business with Bing
Bing Places is Microsoft’s version of Google My Business, and registration is pretty similar and straightforward – just follow the instructions. Just like you need to link your Google Analytics account with Google My Business, register your website with Bing Webmaster Tools and Bing SEO Analyzer.
These tools allow you Bing’s search bots to locate your business and register its location for the services it provides. The functionality is the Coke to Google’s Pepsi Analytics.
Now, your local business has the same power to draw traffic from Google, Bing, and Yahoo, which is also in the top 5 of overall web traffic, though still not as large as Google.
People use a wide variety of methods to search, and whichever supplemental search engines you register your local business depends on the nature of the business. A steel mill, for example, doesn’t need to be on Yelp or Foursquare unless you want to troll your employees.
Raise Click-Thru Rates
To gain organic search traffic on Bing (and DuckDuckGo, for that matter), it’s important to raise click-thru rates. It doesn’t matter whether people click through to another page on your site or an external site, so long as they click through to another page, so these search engines can determine relevancy.
Click-thru rates are often ignored by SEO Consultants, because they’re only a small part of Google’s search rankings, but they’re important enough that Forbes has been giving readers a thought for the day for years to remain relevant.
Click-thru rates are the only way to show up on Bing-powered searches, and that traffic can add up, so be sure to pay attention to them.
No matter how consumers search the web, even M2M, localized search results are fueled by geolocation services of posts. In order for big data to work for small businesses, it’s vital to set up automated processes to collect and sort data. With the right analysis, any small business can compete with big business.
Brian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer. His work has appeared on High Times, Huffington Post, Main Street, Hardcore Droid, and Fast Company.