Be Big in Bing

Written by: Jason Bayless | December 23, 2014

In today’s business landscape, success requires maintaining a major online presence. People no longer turn to the yellow pages when they are searching for businesses to meet their everyday needs. Instead, they turn to online listings and directory services such as Bing in order to locate a local business that they can trust. However, many businesses struggle when it comes to understanding exactly how the rankings work with Bing in addition to how they can raise their status in the eyes of online customers. By understanding the basics concerning how Bing ranks their businesses, you can be more than just another online listing.

Bing and other companies often have businesses in their listings simply because the establishment exists in the area. However, a mere listing is not enough for online optimization. Business owners need to log onto Bing and claim ownership of the listing. This action verifies the validity of the listing and allows Bing and its users to know that the business is active. Bing also uses this action to raise the amount of trust that it is willing express to users concerning the listing. When business listings remain unvalidated and inactive for long periods of time, services such as Bing remove them from their listings.

Major online listings also tend to cross reference their information in order to ensure accuracy. When there are discrepancies with other online sources concerning core information, the status of your business is lowered. Smart business owners will standardize their key information on their own website and on other sources as well. The most pertinent information in these terms are the phone number, address, business name, and website URL.

Bing has also started to give businesses higher rankings when images are present with the listing. Businesses that have multiple thumbnail images associated with their name are given higher priority than those where visuals are absent. Additionally, the more often these images are changed and updated, the higher the rankings. The increase in visibility is also likely to be due to the fact that ownership of the business is being confirmed. Again, regular online activity gives the listing priority over inactive listings.

The hours of operation have also become a relevant factor for Bing listings. Every online business now actually has a small Open icon that indicates to users when they are in operation. Online searches are more likely to display business listings that are deemed open at the time of the search. This fact is especially true when users are performing searches on the mobile platform. Owners also need to be aware of the category in which their business is classified. These categories can often be dramatically overgeneralized in some cases, however. The more specifically you can categorize the specialty of your business, the more easily users will be able to find your listing.

Bing also works closely with other business-listing software in many categories. Integration of your business with other, trusted online sources can boost your listing tremendously. This tactic is especially critical for restaurants. Open Table is software that allows people to make reservations in advance and search local restaurant listings. Being associated with this company is a major plus in the eyes of Bing. Additionally, integrating with Groupon and offering online deals to customers also raises the profile of your business online.

The final step to optimizing your Bing profile is to give your website careful consideration. Websites that are developed using professional resources consistently outrank businesses without a website or those that lack information and structure. Owners need to make it a priority to have other businesses and online sources refer to their services and website. Professional marketing of the website can easily be accomplished through the use of optimized keywords related to the business. Generalized search-engine strategies make your content more accessible through conventional, online searches. With these strategies in play, online rankings in Bing should no longer be a mystery. Your business goals are completely attainable when you raise your virtual profile.