When optimising for Search Engines, we tend to focus on Google, as they have the biggest share of the online searches (over 60%). Although that been said, that still leaves some 30% for other search engines, or rather 3 out of 10 searches occur using search engines other than Google.
So what can you do to target these search engines as well? Well first of all we need to consider each search engine in turn.
DuckDuckGo is community powered and run by a small group of engineers with a lot of helpers. It’s growing slowly but surely, and had over one billion searches in 2013 and has passed over 4 million queries per day.
In fact it’s growing a bit like a weed…
The SEO advice for DuckDuckGo is:
- Get good backlinks from quality content sites.
- Create a FAQ page to encourage indexing.
- If relevant include location tagging and local place names as keywords.
- Make sure your website is optimised for mobile and pay close attention to iOS.
Bing and Yahoo! SEO
When it comes to Bing, it’s worth keeping in mind that Facebook Graph Search is powered by this engine. If results can’t be found in Facebook’s own data, then the results that it returns from the web are powered by Bing. So it is worth optimising for just this reason alone.
Also Yahoo! uses Bing technology to power its search, so the same techniques will work for both.
Some things to consider:
- Domain age. Bing (and hence Yahoo!) give more importance to this than do Google.
- Meta Keywords. Bing does look at the meta keywords, so you should set them up as well as the page titles and descriptions in your meta information.
- Flash site indexing. They also support indexing Flash sites, although with the removal of Flash support from iOS, you should not be using Flash going forwards.
- Bing places a higher value on inbound and outbound links than Google.
- Weight keywords differently as to what’s competitive and not, so this can be built into your campaign with some good research.
The Non-Google SEO Checklist
Below is the checklist of key things you must do to help Non-Google Search Engines index you well.
#1 Create a detailed FAQ section
To be indexed by the smaller search engines, you need a detailed and well written FAQ section on your website which answers all questions about your company. We suggest putting in a few high value keywords and phrases for your industry in here. Also use keywords in headers and sub headers.
#2 Use Meta Keywords
Nowadays most people don’t bother entering meta keywords as Google does not crawl them. Although we know that Bing and Yahoo! do use them, so for that alone you should set them up. So do some keyword research and put in a few of the most important keywords and phrases in there, which are also repeated in the description and title if possible.
Remember, do not ‘stuff’ and repeat keywords and choose long tail keywords that are closely related to the important keywords where possible.
#3 Create Two Sitemaps
This may seem strange, but some of the search engines do not ‘read’ the XML Sitemap, so you need to also create a sitemap page that is easy to read by such bots.
#4 Optimize for mobile and iOS
This is pretty much a given and is something you should be doing regardless. But do check the following:
- The website displays well on mobile devices and is easy to navigate around.
- You have set up the iOS icons for your website
#5 Optimise for Semantic Search
All the major search engines (including Google) are ‘hot’ about semantic search. So it will pay big dividends to use structured data mark, paying particular attention to markup vocabulary from schema.org.
There are several great tools available to assist with the process of adding such HTML markup to your pages, including various WordPress plugins and code snippet generators (including Google’s own Structured Data Markup Helper). So it should not be that hard to do.
#6 Create truly awesome content
If you have well written and informative content it makes it that much easier to appear on all the search engines. All of them are looking for authoritative content that will add value to their offering. This will take time, but will certainly be worth it as you will gain a strong online presence which will support your business in turn.
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