Link building is one of the most important tasks for any webmaster or marketer that is looking for long term search engine optimization growth. Google has taught us all that. But what about Bing? Now that Microsoft has waged a third quarter blitz to gain some competitive advantage against its arch nemesis, the folks in charge of indexing websites at Bing want to make sure we all understand the best practices for building inbound links to our websites.
The good news is it’s not a far cry different than building links for Google. The bad news is it’s not a far cry different than building links for Google.
Let me explain that. First, a little snippet from the Bing blog:
Bing’s position on link building is straightforward – we are less concerned about the link building techniques used than we are about the intentions behind the effort. That said, techniques used are often quite revealing of intent.
That’s pretty much Google’s take as well. Rather than focusing on good technique versus bad technique, the search engines are more concerned with why webmasters perform certain tasks. That’s why one technique may work well for some webmasters, but get other webmasters flagged for spam. So how does Bing know whether you have good intentions or bad?
That’s the same question that many people have been asking of Google for several years now. And the answer is just as muddled as the answer for good technique/bad technique.
Again, from the Bing blog:
The webmasters who create end user value within their websites, based on the needs of people, are the ones who will see their page rank improve. So where does that value come from? Content. Good, original, text-based content.
In essence, all good link building starts with good content. That’s true for Bing and Google alike.
It’s refreshing to see Bing get serious about link building quality. That hasn’t always been the case. I think the people at Bing have spent a few years studying Google from the inside out. As a result, they’ve modeled some of their own indexing and ranking practices on Google’s policies. The result for Bing is a better search engine and more respect from the SEO community. So what about link building for Bing? What makes a good link?
Well, from their own blog, here’s the bucket list:
- Seek links from relevant sites
- Seek out high authority websites
- Stay natural
The same old message we’ve heard from Google, right? Yes.
And to answer the How question, here’s what Bing says (again from the blog):
- Develop your brand
- Let relevant industry people with blogs and websites know of your website
- Publish optimized online press releases
- Do some article marketing
- Participate in blogs and forums
- Build relationships through social media
- Create an online newsletter
- Write a blog
- Join some industry associations
- Become a trusted expert in your niche
Sound familiar? If it does then it’s probably because you’ve been listening to what the folks at Google and the thousands of SEOs (including me) have been saying about link building for the past ten years (or five years at least).
The good news is, Bing’s list of link building best practices is the same as what we’ve all been saying for some time now. The bad news? Bing isn’t being particularly innovative here. But then, they shouldn’t be.