Confessions of a Bing Addict

Posted on Thursday, September 10th, 2009 by Print This Post Print This Post

Categories - SEM, SEO

Like any good SEO, I visited Bing.com the day it launched. I liked what I saw, especially the pretty picture on the home page. A few days later I visited Bing again and noticed the picture had changed. After discovering the arrow at the bottom of the page that let me click through the daily images, I was hooked. I now visit Bing daily to see what the photo is, as well as to monitor the most popular searches of the day, which are listed below the image. Sometimes the image prompts a memory. Sometimes an “aw” isn’t that cute. Most of the time I learn a few things.

One day, a gorgeous photo appeared of a rock off the Lebanon coast. I promptly emailed my Lebanese immigrant friend to tell her about it. She wrote back to explain that it was Al Rawcheh Rock and tell me she’d made it her desktop wallpaper. Without thinking about it, I had just promoted Bing to my friend, and she’d taken the bait.

This is What Good Content Is About

As an SEO content writer, I have a dual task of writing good, optimized SEO copy, but also writing copy that will engage users and hopefully prompt them to share it. When it comes to creating good copy that’s engaging and encourages sharing, Bing wins the prize for most innovative. Rather than a joke email that will be passed around and then forgotten, or a video that will go hot on Youtube and then slowly lose steam, this content is ever-changing. It brings me back to the site daily to admire the picture and mouse over the Advent calendar-like info boxes. This one picture spurs me to go deeper into the site to learn more about it. When I do that, Bing gets me to engage with their search engine in a way I might not if it was just a simple screen with the Bing logo.

How Can We Imitate this Success?

The simple answer is that most sites don’t have the resources to create an entirely new home page every day, nor would it be appropriate to their business.  However, we can still create fresh, engaging content regularly and encourage people to share it by making smaller daily changes to the home page. Is there a place you can feature a product of the day, a fact of the day, a photo of the day? If you can make this something unusual, interesting, or particularly useful, you’ve now created a reason for someone to visit your site every day. Every so often, that person will tell a friend to visit your site.

What Bing does isn’t difficult as a concept. It requires research and planning, but one staff member can spend one day a week creating the content and loading it into the system. Their approach does, however, require dedication. You can’t go a day without updating, or stop updating when that staffer goes on vacation. Once you stop updating daily, users will stop visiting daily. Soon visiting your site will no longer be a habit. Soon after that, your site may be forgotten.

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3 Responses to “Confessions of a Bing Addict”

  1. Jacob Stoops says:

    I agree, Bing does have some nice features and the homepage is top-notch. My problem with Bing is that their index is still very slow to pick up new sites, etc. For instance, Google has 200+ pages of my site indexed, whereas Bing has only 9. So for me, it is a book with an interesting cover but the same old story. Until they improve their index, they will always take a backseat to Google.

  2. David Hughes says:

    I am interested in the ecommerce functionality the Bing is starting to push, e.g. making it easier to get to what i want from the SERP

  3. Kate Shaw says:

    Good insight Aryn. Its easy to forget how small changes can create big impact in regards to keeping sites engaging. May I add in the idea of adding a Facebook Fan Box Widget and allow the community themselves to keep adding fresh content?

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