Microsoft Bing – The decision Engine
Bing is a greatly packaged replacement for the Live Search! It has a fancy and (indeed) a searcher friendly interface. The Bing team says that it lets you overcome information overload and helps you make decision faster and easier. Bing’s new features help the searcher save time and make an informed decision.
Microsoft recently published a PDF about Search Engine Optimization called Bing: New Features Relevant to Webmasters. The PDF primarily describes the user interface changes launched with Bing, and how those might impact site owners, but also touches on search engine optimization. Numerous researches carried out on how searchers read and use the search engine result pages have demonstrated a constant pattern.
The pattern has been defined as the “Golden Triangle pattern”. The Golden triangle pattern suggest that in a SERP containing a single threaded results for a query, the searchers generally scan the length of the first result and then they scan lesser amount of information for the second result and follow this ever decreasing pattern for seeking information until they mostly stop at the result # 5.
Studies also suggest that over 50% the searchers refine their search query by going back to the SERP, from a non-helpful SE result. In most cases they opt abandoning the result altogether!
The Bing interface design comes to the rescue! With categorized result pages and organized explore pane – quick tabs, related searches, search history contents of the explore pane, make it highly dynamic.
Result Type Improvements – Bing brings to you the standard “blue ink” exposing deep links within a website. When possible Bing also represents related information about the result such as, with books or movies, user ratings and links to reviews directly in the caption.
Best Match – top ranking result for any query is listed under the best match result. A searcher can easily find related information in forms of deep links without having to go to the website and look for the information that he requires.
Instant Answers – These now offer more comprehensive information and richer results than the traditional result.
Caption improvements in Bing:
Document Preview – Document preview allows searchers to instantly preview the content from the deep link without having to go to the website. All the searchers need to do is move the mouse pointer over the caption and they can preview a sample of the actual content on the page of the website instantly and make an informed decision about visiting the website or otherwise.
They say this helps increase qualified traffic, but some webmasters might not want to expose the content present on the page and would like to have the visitors visit their site and get all the information that they are looking for. For them, Microsoft provides a way to opt-out of the feature.
Just add the following to the <head> section of each page:
<meta name=“msnbot”, content=“nopreview”>
Or generically for all robots:
<meta name=“robots”, content=“nopreview”>
If you don’t want this feature used on any page of the site, it might be easier to return the directive in the server HTTP header as follows:
Flash Extraction – Microsoft says that Flash-based sites are responsible for 21% of all empty descriptions in their index. They say that Bing has implemented new technologies that can perform “limited data extraction” and has now been able to generate descriptions for one-third of those formerly empty tagged, flash based websites. Skip Flash introduction link in result feature on applicable flash based websites help the searcher get right to the content of the website.
Local Listings – It is the new Bing feature for local business searches.
With all these features that Bing offers its searchers, they say that a well done SEO expands opportunities with Bing!!