Did you know that you might be missing out on sales with google-first SEO?
Because Google dominates the SEO world, it is easy to get drawn into only optimising for Google searches and completely ignoring other search engines such as Bing, Yahoo and DuckDuckGo.
But did you know the love for that search platform is on the decline?
Growth beyond Google
Obviously having the lions share means that Google is still incredibly important. But for global businesses especially, other search engines should not be ignored and so your SEO activities should take into account what a couple of other search engines also would like to see
Bing & Yahoo
We have put Bing and Yahoo together as Yahoo search is powered by Bing (a change from Google in 2010). So if you optimise for Bing, you automatically optimise for Yahoo.
Bing and Yahoo also have 24.2% of the market share in the US- much more than the 5% it has here in the UK. Some of this is down to the gamification of their search engine as it rewards searches with points that they can redeem against purchases in the Microsoft and Windows store.
You will also be pleased to know that Google and Bing have very similar SEO requirements. But there are also some differences to note.
For Bing (and Yahoo) search engine, they take age and type of website into account – with government and educational websites coming up top.
Local searches tend to favour small businesses on Bing, whereas for Google this is not always the case. Their reason being that if people are search locally, they often want small businesses to show up, otherwise they would use a brands name in the search term.
Social cues are more integrated on Bing than Google. While Facebook reviews do show on Google My Business, Bing has always taken into account these golden nods from customers and so ahead of the game in that respect. They also look at sharing patterns, so if your content gets shared by others, this is another feather in your cap when it comes to Bing.
Another positive about optimising for Bing is that their search performs well across all browsers. This is not always the case for Google. So if you use Chrome and use that to optimise sites you may find that you are having to do more work to make a site look good across multiple browsers.
Launched in 2008 DuckDuckGo is the only search engine that promises not to collect or store any of your personal information. You can see why people (especially families that may be introducing small people to the WWW) are choosing to use DuckDuckGo over larger data harvesters.
Because they do not track their individual user’s locations, they use other geo qualifier signals to ascertain where the search is coming from. These are not as precise. So location cues in your copy and on your site are key as well as up to date listing information. Especially if you are a small business with a location you need people to visit.
DuckDuckGo has said that quality backlinks are important to show high in the rankings. We can also safely presume that anything to do with site security is a ranking factor. So no mixed content, outdated maintenance and unkept sites.
Also, DuckDuckGo pulls their data from over 400 sources including Bing and Yahoo. So there is a bit of a hierarchy of which to look at first, with some additional considerations in mind.
So what have we learnt?
We have learnt that there is a world outside of the Google bubble that seems to be growing. That different parts of the world do not favour Google as much as we do here in the UK (at the moment).
That there is a rise in the call for non-data collecting search engines – DuckDuckGo being one of many – and they can not be ignored.
That the majority of the principles cross over – but love blind is when you are putting all your eggs in the Google basket. So use other browsers to check how optimised your site really is. Google is not the be-all and end-all, and you could be missing out on vital conversions if you ignore other search engines.