Bing Launches Webmaster Guidelines, Offers SEO Webinars

Bing logoBing Webmaster Guidelines are live and tucked away in the Content Guidelines section of Webmaster Help & How-to. The guidelines are designed to “help most business owners understand the broad strokes of search marketing” and will not contain deep, exhaustive answers, according to a blog post by Bing Webmaster Program senior product manager Duane Forrester.

This is Bing’s first crack at a set of official guidelines around most major topics affecting webmasters looking to optimize their sites for Bing. The broad categories covered in their guidelines are:

  • Content
  • Links
  • Social
  • Indexation
  • Technical
  • SEO
  • Avoid

Bing specifically calls out five “don’ts” that should surprise no one in their Avoid section:

  • Cloaking
  • Link schemes
  • Like schemes
  • Meta refresh redirects
  • Duplicate content

They give SEO the thumbs up, stating, “Search engine optimization is a valid practice which seeks to improve a website, making content easier to find and more relevant.” According to Bing, the main areas of focus when optimizing a website for their engine are:

  • Title, meta description, image alt, and H1 tags
  • Links - internal and external
  • Social sharing
  • Crawlability, including XML sitemaps, navigational structure, rich media cautions, graceful degradation, URL structure, robots.txt, crawl rate, access and instruction for Bingbot to crawl the site, and using Ignore URL parameters, where appropriate.
  • Site structure, including links, URL structure and keyword usage, clean URLs, HTML and XML sitemaps, content hierarchy, and global navigation.
  • On-page considerations including head copy, body copy, anchor text, content and links.

Bing’s guidelines, as promised, are a brief overview that should be easily digestible for the majority of webmasters. Those seeking additional information can still access the Bing Webmaster Forums and other resources within the Bing Webmaster Tools Help & How-to Center.

Forrester also announced a series of free webinars for webmasters, each consisting of a 30-minute presentation followed by Q&A, beginning November 28. The six webinars currently open for registration are:

  • SEO 101 on November 28
  • Crawling Basics on December 11
  • WMT Overview on January 10
  • Authority Building on January 24
  • Search/Social Overlap on February 7
  • Tomorrow’s SEO on February 21

“As we update these guidelines over time, we’ll post notices here at the blog to let folks know to review the changes,” Forrester said. “Changes should be infrequent as these current Webmaster Guidelines cover most major topics.”