Don’t Overlook Bing for Videos

Feb 20, 2013 12:28 PM  By

Bing has been around since 2009. Since then the Microsoft-owned search engine has slowly taken marketshare from Google, but product videos for many e-commerce companies don’t show up on Bing – even Zappos, who is often referred to as a leader in terms of maximizing e-commerce with lots of videos, has 664,000 videos indexed in Google and only 20 in Bing.

The reason for the lack of attention to Bing is probably because Google occupies so much mindshare among SEO watchers. Given the frequency of changing algorithms announced by Google – and how these algorithm changes can impact results rankings and throw the SEO experts into a panic – it’s no wonder that e-commerce businesses need to devote significant time and effort to managing search results on Google.

However, this doesn’t mean that Bing should be overlooked. Bing and Facebook recently announced that the search engine will power Facebook’s new Graph Search tool, which means that indexing your videos with Bing will help drive traffic to your site from Facebook. Bing also powers search on Yahoo. Counting searches on Yahoo, Bing has about a 28 percent share of the web search market.

Recognizing that Bing has had a bit of an image problem when compared to Google, Microsoft has been working hard to prove that Bing search is customer-friendly. The “Bing It On” search challenge website (www.bingiton.com) was launched in September, and lets users enter search terms and decide whether they prefer results from Bing or Google. Microsoft claims that “Bing It On” users prefer Bing results to Google results by a 2 to 1 margin.

Initially, the process of getting your videos on Bing didn’t seem as straightforward as indexing them on Google. In Bing’s Webmaster Tools pages, there is a field for submitting your video site map – but I discovered that it doesn’t work.

Before you get frustrated trying to upload your video site map in this manner, you should know that there is an easier way to do it. You need to email Bing your site map to bingfeed@microsoft.com. The good news is that Bing now accepts the Google protocol site map, so you don’t need to create the site map fresh – just submit the video site map you’ve already created for Google, and you’re done.

There’s every sign that traffic on Bing will continue to grow, especially due to its connection to Facebook. Get an early advantage against your e-commerce competitors by making sure your product videos are showing up in Bing results right now.

Dr. Melody King is vice president of marketing at Treepodia.