CTR Can Affect Your Rakings in Bing Now

Bing has confirmed that their ranking algorithm employs click through rate (CTR) as one of the many ranking factors. Speaking at SMX, Steve Tullis, Senior Program Manager Lead, Bing, said that “if 

pages in the search results don’t get clicked on, the ranking will likely be lower“.

OK, for those who still don’t know or  have a vague perception of the term, CTR is derivative metric determined by dividing the number of times your listing is clicked (clicks), by the total number of times your listing is displayed (search impressions), to determine your listing CTR, which is expressed as a percentage. For instance, if your web site is in position 10 on Bing for the search term “SEO”, which searched for 10,000 times a day. If you receive 400 clicks a day from Bing on that listing, then 400 /10,000 equals 0.04 (expressed as percentage) 4% CTR.

So what can make a user to click on your listing in the SERPs? Well, the determining factor here is the actual snipped being shown. If the snippet is well-written, and matches the user’s expectation, it is more likely to attract the user’s attention, causing them to click on your listing. OK, but where does this snippet come from? Generally, a search engine takes the site’s home page meta data (meta title and meta description), and uses it it as the page snippet to display within the SERPs. However, the search engines can also pull in a snippet from the actual on-page content. Basically, what search engines want to accomplish is to display the most relevant snippet based on the search term or phrase.

The meta description tag in Bing is recommended to be no more than 150 characters long (including spaces). Within these 150 characters you need to be informative, concise and descriptive, whilst using your targeted keywords. Including targeted keywords in the meta description tag cannot affect search engine rankings, but the keywords will get highlighted in the snippet, making the listing more prominent in the SERPs.

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