We’re always told (I’ve said it myself) that when optimising your site for search engines that Google is king and you may as well forget the rest. Now it’s certainly true that Google commands the lion’s share of the search market, but in my opinion it’s also a lot harder to rank well in Google. It’s kind of like choosing a super-competitive keyword versus a long-tail one: you know it’s better to own the competitive keyword, but it’s a lot easier to achieve a good ranking with the long-tail one.
The reason I mention this is I’ve noticed something surprising happening with one of my sites. It’s a niche site, optimised for a handful of related keywords (and when optimising I had Google in mind), and monetised with AdSense. It’s not getting a lot of traffic yet as it’s still quite new and ranked quite low for my target keywords (at the moment the best-ranked is on page 8 in Google), so what Google is sending me is long-tail traffic. The surprising thing is that I’m on page 1 in Bing for most of my keywords, and while the volume of traffic Bing is sending is still only about 25% of what Google is sending, here’s the thing: it’s targetted traffic matching my keywords!
The result is that I’m getting an AdSense CTR of about four times higher on the Bing traffic than the Google traffic and the 25% (targetted) Bing traffic has made me twice as much as the (semi-targetted) Google traffic!
Of course, all this was unintentional. I didn’t set out to rank well in Bing; it just happened as a side-effect of optimising with Google in mind. Just goes to show that after all is said and done the search engines aren’t really that different! But perhaps Bing finds my particular blend of SEO especially tasty? I don’t really know at this stage, but you can bet I’ll be keeping a close eye on my stats!
Would you care to share your own experiences of Bing optimisation? Feel free to leave a comment below…