1. Google vs. Microsoft Bing market share
  2. Comparison of the functionality of Google and Microsoft Bing
  3. How Google and Microsoft Bing differ in the size of index and crawling
  4. Differences in the user interface and tools
  5. Microsoft Bing May Excel in the image search via Google
  6. How Microsoft Bing and Google deal with video search
  7. Map listings in both search engines are important to local SEO
  8. Optimization for Google Search vs. Microsoft Bing
  9. Google Search Vs Microsoft Bing: The Verdict

When it comes to optimizing a website, SEO experts usually focus on Google. After all, it's the most popular search engine in the world.

But what about Microsoft Bing? Is it also worth optimizing your website?

Let's see how these two search giants, Microsoft Bing (renamed from “Bing” in October 2020) and Google, compare.

Google vs. Microsoft Bing market share

One of the first differences between Microsoft Bing and Google is market share. According to Statista, Bing had a 6.7% share of the global search market in February 2021, while Google accounted for 86.6%.

That's pretty big.

While it may be tempting to just focus on Google, Microsoft Bing offers good conversions and has a user base that shouldn't be ignored.

Those 6.7% of search users make up millions who use Microsoft Bing every day.

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Optimizing for Bing is especially important if you are targeting an American audience. In fact, a third of all online queries in the US are powered by Microsoft properties when you factor in Yahoo and voice searches.

Some have wondered over the years whether Bing is an acronym for "Because it's not Google. “I'm not sure how true that is, but the name comes from a campaign in the early 1990s for its predecessor Live Search.

Another tidbit is that Ahrefs recently conducted a study of the top 100 Bing searches worldwide and was # 1 searched for (Google).

Comparison of the functionality of Google and Microsoft Bing

From a search function point of view, the two search engines are similar, but Google offers more core functions:

feature Google Microsoft Bing
Text search Yes Yes
Video search Yes Yes
Image search Yes Yes
cards Yes Yes
news Yes Yes
shop Yes Yes
Books Yes No
Flights Yes No
Finances Yes No
Scientific literature Yes No

How Google and Microsoft Bing differ in the size of index and crawling

Google says:

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"The Google Search Index contains hundreds of billions of web pages and is well over 100,000,000 gigabytes in size."

Even so, not even Google can crawl the entire web. It just won't happen.

This is why the use of structured data is so important. It provides a data feed on your content so that Google can better understand it. That way, you can qualify for comprehensive results and get more clicks and impressions.

Microsoft Bing has not released any similar numbers. However, on this website for estimating search engine index size, the Microsoft Bing index is between 8 and 14 billion web pages.

The two engines talked a little about their approaches to web indexing.

Microsoft Bing says:

“Bingbot uses an algorithm to determine which websites, how often, and how many pages to fetch from each website. The goal is to minimize the Bingbot crawl footprint on your websites while ensuring that the most up-to-date content is available. "

Around the same time the above statement was made, Google's John Mueller said:

"I think the tricky part here is that we don't always crawl URLs the same frequency. So some URLs we will crawl daily. Some URLs might be weekly. Different URLs every few months, maybe even every half a year or so. Us so try to find the right balance so that your server doesn't get overloaded. "

Google has a mobile-first index, while Microsoft Bing takes a different stance and does not plan to have a mobile-first indexing policy.

Instead, Microsoft Bing maintains a single index that is optimized for both desktop and mobile devices. So, it's important to make sure your website is optimized, loads quickly, and gives users what they need.

Google has grown into more than just a search engine with products like Gmail, Google Maps, Chrome OS, Android OS, YouTube, and more.

Microsoft Bing also offers emails via Outlook as well as other services such as Office Online or OneDrive.

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However, unlike Google, it does not have its own operating system. Instead, Windows Phone 8 or iOS is used on Apple devices.

Now let's take a look at where Bing is equal to – or superior to – Google.

Differences in the user interface and tools

Google has a clean, simple interface that many people find easy to use.

Google search.

Microsoft Bing too; In my opinion, Bing is actually a little more visual.

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Both search engines display useful information on related searches, pictures, companies, and news, and are great at informing users about everything they need to know on a specific topic.

Find Microsoft Bing

SEO pros love our tools and data.

Fortunately, both Google and Microsoft Bing have decent keyword research tools that offer insights into performance:

Google vs. Microsoft Bing: A Detailed Comparison of Two Search Engines

One area in which I think Google is falling behind is the data it provides in the Google Search Console. If you want to learn how to use it, check out Using Google Search Console For SEO: A Complete Guide.

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One of the cool features in Microsoft Bing is the ability to import data from the Google Search Console:

Bing Webmaster Tools.

Another Microsoft Bing feature that I think outperforms Google is the fact that it provides SEO reports.

According to Bing, these reports provide general page-level recommendations based on SEO best practices to improve your rankings.

The reports are generated automatically every two weeks and contain tips on what to work on or what to check.

Microsoft Bing SEO reports.

For more information, see a complete guide to Bing Webmaster Tools.

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Microsoft Bing May Excel in the image search via Google

When it comes to image search, Microsoft Bing may have a head start on Google by providing higher quality images.

I also like the filter functions when searching for images, as you can turn off titles and search by image size, color or type.

Microsoft Binge Image Search.

Check out Bing's visual image search that lets you get more with images. Check out the library of specialty skills to shop, identify landmarks and animals, or just have fun.

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For more information, see How Bing's Image and Video Algorithm Works.

Google has more images to display than Microsoft Bing. Make the most of it with the tips in a guide to advanced image search from Google.

However, Microsoft Bing provides more detailed information about the images users are looking for.

Google image search.

How Microsoft Bing and Google deal with video search

Microsoft Bing has a much more visual page of video search results, including a grid view with large thumbnails.

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Google's video results are more standard and include a vertical list of small thumbnails.

Microsoft Bing also offers previews of certain videos. If you click on that, Bing won't stop you, which is cool. From my point of view, it also provides a lot more information in the video results.

As you can see in the screenshot of a movie search below, they have ratings and reviews as well as the cast and even the place to see the movie which is great.

Microsoft Bing video search

I didn't have this experience with Google video search.

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This is one area where Microsoft Bing definitely outperforms Google.

Google video search

Map listings in both search engines are important to local SEO

Both search engines have similar functionality for maps, including map listings and local listings on the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Make sure you claim all of your listings in both Microsoft Bing and Google, and tweak your profile with business info, photos, appropriate categories and links.

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Accurate name, address and phone number (NAP) information is key.

See a full guide to Google Maps Marketing.

Optimization for Google Search vs. Microsoft Bing

Google is mostly concerned with E.A.T. Expertise, Authority and Trust.

Google searches are based on machine-based algorithms that take into account previous search history and previous location of users when generating results.

This means that if a particular user wants to find something specific on Google, it is much easier to do so than Microsoft Bing, as Google has a more complete picture of who that person is before they type something into the browser.

Google has always been a link-centric search engine where the quality of the links is still important, not the quantity. Links are not that important to Microsoft Bing.

In my opinion, Microsoft Bing has always focused on on-page optimization. It puts more emphasis on content that is well optimized or has important on-page elements like titles, descriptions, urls, and content.

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In contrast to Google, Microsoft Bing states in its webmaster guidelines that it includes social signals in its algorithm. That means you should also focus on Twitter and Facebook – including creating quality content on your website and social platforms – if you want to rank high in Microsoft Bing.

The content is extremely important to both search engines. Always focus on high quality content that meets the information needs of the user. By creating useful and relevant content, users will naturally love and link to it.

For example, if I'm looking for cars, you should show me valuable content on the topic: How can I buy a car, costs, maintenance, what the shopping experience is like, etc.

Both speed and mobile phone friendliness and the right technical infrastructure are important for both engines. However, Microsoft Bing is more focused on using anchor text. It is known that Bing rewards websites with appropriate anchor text for a page title that was devalued by Google many years ago.

Make sure to read these resources about how to optimize for different search engines:

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Google Search Vs Microsoft Bing: The Verdict

Both Microsoft Bing and Google serve the information needs of millions of people every day.

Both give your brand a chance to reach new users and put you in front of millions of qualified customers looking for information, products, and services.

The optimization for both search engines is similar. Microsoft Bing is more focused on on-page optimization and incorporating social signals, while Google is more focused on E.A.T. and links.

Microsoft Bing has definitely improved over the last year and is more competitive than Google, especially when it comes to its unique features.

For this reason, I recommend optimizing for both to get the lion's share of internet searches and to maximize visibility.

More resources:

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Photo credit

All screenshots by the author, March 2021.

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