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Google, Bing and Yahoo! walk into a bar

Part III — Yahoo and Bing

Google, Yahoo!, and Bing walk into a bar.
Google says to the bartender, “I know every move you make, buddy, and clearly I’m the most popular guy in here. I’ll have a martini served in a lava lamp decorated with golden Elvish runes.”
The bartender serves Google and ignores Yahoo! and Bing.
The bartender’s first mistake was being lousy at his job and ignoring customers, and I would have fired that guy a.s.a.p. A bar that serves drinks in Elvish decorated lava lamps should know better. His second mistake was the same mistake many of you are making — and that’s underestimating Yahoo! and Bing. But do you know who doesn’t ignore them?? I’ll tell you who: ONE OUT OF THREE people don’t! That’s right, Bing and Yahoo! account for ONE THIRD of ALL searches, and that figure is rising as we speak.

It’s funny, if I had written about it some years ago, the bartender’s response would’ve been even somewhat justified, but not today. The global search engine market is still dominated by the Google search engine, but other search engines continue to rise in popularity.

A history of the most popular search engines

So, to understand Yahoo! and Bing’s significance, let’s do a small recap of the history of web search. This is a primordial time we’re talking about here, when people were still at the mercy of dial-up modems, MTV actually showed music videos, and looking at a person’s face while communicating was still a thing. At the dawn of search engines, four great kings ruled the land: AltaVista, MSN search (now Bing), Yahoo! and the chosen one — Google. As time progressed, Google pulled forward in sophistication and popularity while the rest dropped off. In its peak, Google dominated as much as 90% of all searches on the internet (!), and it became the default search engine of many web users. Its interface, quickness to deliver search engine results, and accuracy of answers to search queries made Google the best search engine for years.

But that era has come to an end. In fact, what we are witnessing is a real turning point. Bing and Yahoo!, once distant competitors, have joined forces and are slowly but surely making a comeback as runners-up to Google with about 20 and 10 percent of search share, respectively. While Google remains to be the most popular search engine, the Bing search engine has been making solid advancements to its search algorithms, and Yahoo!, offering some unique functions of its own in the digital marketing arena,, is also climbing in popularity.

Optimizing For Google, Yahoo!, Bing, and Other Search Engines

The choice some make to ignore Bing and Yahoo! is really a mystery to me. Would you rather reach just 66% of the audience or 96%?? What if your biggest client is someone who uses Yahoo! exclusively, and by neglecting to bump up your Yahoo! ranks, he will end up giving his money to your competitor?? Search engine optimization principles dictate that websites should be optimized not only for Google search results but also for alternative search engines for maximum value return.

As most SEO experts and enthusiasts are painfully aware, Google has a long and unpredictable history of updating its algorithm in major ways. Google’s updates have completely changed the search game and many businesses have suffered from the lack of incoming organic traffic that ensued. Now Bing and Yahoo! make algorithm changes too, and sometimes they’re just as significant, but they don’t synchronize with Google; so when Google makes its next major update, Yahoo! and Bing will likely remain stable. That means if your rankings take a beating in one search engine, you’ll still have incoming traffic remaining consistent in the other two. Isn’t the extra effort it takes to optimize for Bing and Yahoo! worth an additional 30 percent of search visibility? Of course it is.

So go out and do likewise. Start adding those Yahoo! and Bing terms, and conquer the entire market instead of just two thirds of it!

If you need a reminder on how, click here

And btw, Google, Yahoo! and Bing are just part of an array of search engines out there. Check out the FULL LIST of what we can track for you. (Warning: you’ll be blown away!)

You can use ALL of it if you just pay attention and fine-tune your SEO.

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