I noticed something strange in my blog stats for this month. I was getting some search engine traffic from Bing.
Those just showing up might think, “So what? Bing is the second largest search engine after Google with… um… 5% of the market to Google’s 85-90%”
And for a long stretch Bing, and the search engines that use Bing to deliver their results (I wrote a post about that), used to deliver a trickle of traffic to me. But then back in June of 2022 something happened and Bing cut off the tap. They seemed to have it in for all blogs on the WordPress.com domain.
On these charts, blue is impressions, using the scale on the right, and purple is actual clicks, which uses a scale one eighth the range.
And it wasn’t just “nobody is clicking on your link” or being a couple of pages into the rankings, I could literally not force Bing to find my blog.
I had a Bing console account and had fed it my site map and RSS feed data, so it wasn’t like they lost track of me. I seemed to be on some wide blacklist of sites.
I did persist for a while. I would return to the Bing console about once a month and re-submit my site map, and the console indicated they did in fact oblige my submission and crawled by site. But traffic was not forthcoming.
But now, six months later… traffic has resumed. I see traffic from Bing, and a couple of the sites that use Bing, like Duck Duck Go and Yahoo.
Which is nice. I still don’t have the top search result for TAGN there, like I used to and as I still have with Google.
In fact, it is quite an effort to get Bing to cough up a link for my site even with some very directed search terms. Typing in the full name of the blog into the search field yields what I can only describe as epic level avoidance. Bing will send you to the Tumblr feed for my blog, my Twitter account, my YouTube channel, the Flipboard page for the blog, mentions of my blog on other sites (but not Massively OP, because both Google and Bing seem to have it in for Bree’s crew, though it does find links to the old AOL Massively site, now archived under the Engadget banner), links to sites that have scraped my content, and even the Blogger site I had been using as a hot backup of this site until If This Then That broke the connection somehow.
You have to work to find me. But it is some progress I suppose.
Another 40 people made their way here so far in January because of it.
Once again, blue is impressions and purple is clicks, and I cropped the left side scale for links in this time.
Bing also says that it is sending more people my way that WordPress.com tells me about, but web stats not matching up is pretty much a way of life on the internet. You can only really compare stats from the same source using the same methodology… like the EVE Online monthly economic report.
A far cry from the 500 people directed my way by Bing and its associates in January of last year, but we take what we can get. I’ll keep resubmitting my feed… which is what somebody recommended… once a month until morale improves.
Well, at least Bing is kinda back now.
I honestly prefer Bing when I’m searching for videos or graphics because the results are presented in a better format than Google does. That feels kind of weird to say, but at the same time not because Google does have that reputation for not being as smooth of a UI experience as that of other companies. Well, there’s also Google’s reputation of rolling something out and then almost immediately abandoning it, but I digress.
If Bing is back, that makes sense. Seems like a “beggars can’t be choosers” situation with them, since from what I can tell in my stats from 2013 all the way to today, barely anyone uses Bing at all. 99%+ of my traffic has always been from Google, for better or worse, with second place being followers visiting my blog through the Reader function.