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The differences between Google and Bing

John Murray

The two top search engines are Google and Microsoft’s Bing, with Yahoo in third place. Most search engine optimization strategies will have a similar effect for Google and Bing, but businesses need to be aware of the differences and the similarities between the two search engines in order to make the most of them.

Although both search engines do not publish exactly how they rank websites, a lot of research has gone into uncovering most of the factors that the search engines use to do so.

The similarities

Both Google and Bing consider page rank and high quality links. If you are a local business, then both search engines provide local results.

Both engines feature paid adverts, Google AdWords and Bing’s AdCenter.

High quality original content containing relevant keywords is vital for high placement in the search results for both engines.

The differences

If you host a forum, then Google will rank it providing it is good quality with no spam. Bing tends to show forum results lower in its rankings.

Both search engines take domain age into account, but this counts more on Bing than Google. Bing gives more weight to education (.edu) and government (.gov) domains.

Google does not favour Flash content, so websites with Flash will tend to rank higher in Bing.

Google is better than Bing at understanding synonyms and the context in which a keyword is used.

Some searches contain ambiguous words. For example, the word “head” could mean the part of the body or refer to a leadership role. The two search engines treat ambiguous words differently. Bing will usually bring up local results first, whilst Google will focus on business websites whose brand contains the ambiguous word.

When drafting an internet marketing strategy, it pays to do some research and think about the demographic you’re targeting before tailoring it for a particular search engine,

John is every inch the wordsmith and loves a game of Scrabble above all else. With experience writing for newspapers, John’s time at university was spent studying Creative Writing – something which comes across in his love of the pun.

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