You may already be familiar with the Google Search Console, but did you know Bing has it’s own version of a search console?
It’s called Bing Webmaster Tools, and it works in a very similar way to Google’s Search Console. You can use it to submit a sitemap to Bing, check if your website is mobile friendly, find out about keyword performance, and so much more.
Although Google is a considerably more popular search engine than Bing, I personally think it’s worth submitting your sitemap to both. And I actually find the information that Bing provides about your website to be really informative and useful!
In this post I’ll you how to create an account with Bing Webmaster Tools, add your website to it, and verify it.
1 | Log into Bing Webmaster Tools
Let’s start by heading over to the Bing Webmaster Tools homepage. Once you get there, click Sign In.
This will open a popup box where you will need to choose how you want to log into Webmaster Tools. There are three ways in which you can log in:
- Using your Microsoft account
- Using your Google account
- Using your Facebook account
For the purpose of this tutorial, I’m going to log in with my Google account. If you don’t have a Google account, I’ll show you how to set one up for free in this post.
If you choose to sign in using Google then you will be prompted to sign in to your Google Account if you aren’t signed in already.
2 | Add your website
Once you have logged in to Webmaster Tools, it’s time to add your website. Enter your website URL in to the Add a Site box. Then Click Add.
On the next page you will need to fill in a few details about yourself and your company. Don’t worry if you don’t have a company; just put in the name of your blog or website instead.
The form will ask you to enter your website’s sitemap. If you know what the URL of your sitemap is then enter this here. However, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know what this is because you can always add this at a later date.
You will also be asked at what time do you receive the most traffic to your website. If you don’t know, just guess! Again, you can always change this information at a later date.
Once you’ve added all of your details, click Add at the bottom of the page.
3 | Verify your website
The next step in this process is to verify your website, and there a number of ways that you can do this.
Here are the easiest ways to verify your website:
Upload a XML file to your website
The first way you can verify your your website by downloading an XML file Bing have created for you and uploading it to your website. In order to do this you will need access to your website files, either via FTP or cPanel.
To start the download, click on BingSiteAuth.xml. Once the file has download, upload this to the public_html folder of your website.
To check that this has uploaded correctly, click the link provided in point 3 of the instruction and if this page works, click Verify.
I completely understand that not everyone will feel comfortable uploading files to their website. But don’t worry as I have more options for you…
Insert a code into your website’s <head> section
Another way in which you can verify your website is by inserting a piece of code in-between the <head> </head> tags of your website.
If you are a WordPress user, you can usually find the <head> tags in your header.php file. To access this, log into WordPress, hover over Appearance in the left hand navigation, and click Editor.
Once you are on the Editor page, select header.php from the menu on the right hand side of the screen and insert your code before the closing </head> tag.
And if you aren’t comfortable with messing around with the code of your website, you can use a plugin such as Head, Footer and Post Injections which allows you to easily insert code into your WordPress header. I talk more about installing and using this plugin in this post.
Verify via Yoast SEO
If you are a WordPress users and you have the Yoast SEO plugin installed then you can verify you website via the plugin.
Firstly, you need to obtain the verification code, which is the string of letters and numbers within the meta tag as highlighted below:
All we need is the code in between the quotes.
Now log in to your WordPress admin area and click on SEO in the left hand menu.
This will take you to the General settings page. Here, click on the Webmaster Tools tab.
On this page you will see a number of boxes where you can enter verification codes for different webmaster tools, including the Bing Webmaster Tools.
Enter your code in the box next to Bing verification code, then click Save changes.
Now head back into Webmaster Tools and click Verify.
4 | Take a look around Bing Webmaster Tools and start using it!
After you have verified your website, you will be taken to your dashboard whcih looks a little something like this:
If you added your websites’s sitemap when setting up your account then your dashboard may display more information like this:
(Note: My stats are still quite low as I only recently added my website to Bing!)
If you didn’t add your sitemap when setting up your account, don’t worry as you will be able to do this at a later date. I have a blog post coming soon about adding your sitemap to Bing Webmaster Tools using Yoast SEO for WordPress.
You can use the menu on the left hand side of the screen to help you navigate around the Webmaster Tools interface. As you will see, there are a lot of useful tools on this website so it’s worth taking some time to explore.
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