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Clickthrough rates for Bing listings revealed in blog post

Richard Bell

In a recent post on the Bing blog, the Partner Architect of the company’s Research and Development team, Ronny Kohavi, revealed a number of interesting facts regarding clickthrough rates in Bing’s search engine results pages (SERPs).

Kohavi confirmed that more than half of Bing users choose the first option presented in the SERPs. When the option at the top of the list includes ‘deep links’ – which are links pointing to specific pages on a site – the clickthrough figure rises to more than 75%.

Some observers have suggested that the search engine may be putting smaller companies at a disadvantage to larger competitors, and that Bing’s algorithms seem to benefit companies with deep links or bigger budgets for SEO content.

In his post, Kohavi also pointed out what site owners can expect from the searches if they don’t rank top of the list on Bing. The clickthrough rate for the third option down on the SERPs stood at 4 – 6%, while the fourth option in the results experienced a clickthrough rate of 2 – 3%. When eighth on the list, sites experienced a clickthrough rate of less than 1%.

A graph for the results was given in the blog post, but there was no figure provided for the second option’s clickthrough rate.

Higher rankings in the SERPs will naturally mean more organic traffic finding its way to a website. It was Duane Forrester, Bing’s senior product manager, who reminded attendees at an SMX event in 2011 :

“Never lose sight of the fact that all SEO ranking signals revolve around content of some kind.”

While it’s easy for smaller companies to find themselves resting in the shadow of competitors with colossal SEO budgets, it is possible for them to greatly improve their conversion rates by publishing top quality content. Since Bing provides users who click the back button after choosing the first option with a number of alternative sites, small brands can rely on their editorial prowess to draw in users.

Richard has a First in English Literature and Creative Writing, and has experience writing fiction and short stories (which he has published both online and in magazines).

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