How to Grab Your Local Listing in Bing

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Last week, Microsoft unleashed its brand new search engine onto the market. It’s called Bing and, contrary to what the name suggests, you do have to take it seriously. Even if you’re not planning to give up your Google search habit, you’ll still want to familiarize yourself with Bing to understand how you can help your site rank in their local search index. To learn a bit more about the engine, you can read about the keynote Q&A Microsoft president Dr. Qi Lu gave at last week’s Search Marketing Advanced show in Seattle.

However, what I really wanted to see was how Bing handles local search.

Microsoft’s not known for the creating the hippest search products, so I was curious to see how Bing was handling local search right out of the gate. A search for [Albany, NY Mexican] brings up all the usual suspects that my palette remembers living in Upstate, NY. You’ll notice that the search engine results page (SERP) looks pretty rudimentary compared to Google and Yahoo! (not much more exciting than a Yellow Pages search), however, I really like the refinement options Bing offers on the left-hand side. They take an approach similar to Ask.com where they allow you to sort your search by Rating, Price, Cuisine, Atmosphere, Reservations, Payment and Parking options.

Once you refine your search, Bing allows you to click through to individual business listings. These individual pages give local searchers handy business “scorecards”, 1-click driving directions (a pretty awesome feature), a 3D Bird’s Eye View of the business in Maps, customer reviews, and more.

Why did I point all the refinement features and options Bing shows users? Because it’s important to know what users are seeing so that you can fill out your own local search listings to take advantage of all the refinement options.

So let’s do it.

To list your local business in Bing, head to the Bing Local Listing Center. From there, you’ll be able to check to see if you already have a local listing set up. If you do, you can modify it. If not, now’s the perfect time to create one.

Once you start creating/modifying your account. Bing will ask you to log in using your Windows ID. If you don’t have one, you’ll have to create one. From there, you’ll be asked to enter in your contact and business information, as well as a laundry list of supplemental information like additional phone numbers, Web pages, email address, hours of operation, payment methods, photos, etc. There’s also a long section for additional information like your company tagline, business description, brands carried (if applicable), specialties, affiliations, languages spoken, parking options, etc. It’s always in your best interest to create as complete a profile as you can.

From there, you can select up to six prioritized categories to place your business in based on associated keywords. You’ll also be able to supply information about features, cuisine type, prices, atmosphere, etc. Make sure you fill these out the best you can so that you can take advantage of Bing’s great local search refinement options. If you list it as an option, you won’t show up for it when a user looks for it!

Once that’s complete, Bing will ask you to review your business listing on the map, fixing the pushpin locator, if necessary. If everything looks good, submit your listing and you’re done. That’s it! Freel free to congratulate yourself on a well used 10-15 minutes.

It’s really important that you take the time to complete accurate business listings in Google, Yahoo, Bing and the other third-party service providers. The more accurate information there is about your company out there, the better chances your customers are going to find you. And when it only takes a few minutes, is there really any excuse not to give your Web site the best possible chance at ranking?

No. There’s not.

60 Comments ▼

Lisa Barone


Lisa Barone Lisa Barone is Vice President of Strategy at Overit, an Albany Web design and development firm where she serves on the senior staff overseeing the company’s marketing consulting, social media, and content divisions.

60 Reactions

  1. Great post Lisa. With all the news about Bing there has not been much said about their local features. I’d add that its a good idea to review your information even if you already had a listing with Live. After reading this post I reviewed our listing and found that the location pin needed to be reset as well as a few odds and ends.

    Thanks,

    Josh

  2. Not to mention that search engines are incorporating local results into the “regular” organic results more often (ie the Google 10-pack) and add in the fact that search users are increasingly using local-related terms and you can’t emphasize this point enough.

  3. Nice review Lisa. I hadn’t heard anything about Bing so it was interesting to hear your thoughts on it. Thank you for giving us a taste of what it’s like. I’ll need to go check it out now.

  4. Martin Lindeskog

    Lisa,

    Bing has labeled itself a “decision engine”. Could it be that they want to create a special profile and find a niche compared to Google’s general search engine? I think that I will use Bing when I am planning for a trip, visiting a new location and want to find out great places. The advertisers must be interested in this new feature. I read that Bing had already passed Yahoo search in usage. Could this be true?

    How do you think comparison sites like Yelp and Pricerunner will react to this new type of search behavior?

  5. I feel like a complete idiot, but, how do I add a business that is NOT based in the United States? The drop down for ‘States’ doesn’t list Provinces and there isn’t even a ‘Country’ field. I cannot find anything anywhere that addresses this problem, or even explains why you can’t add businesses outside the states (Even though the option to ‘search within Canada’ is right there). Makes no sense. Anyone know anything on this?

    • Hello Bronwyn,
      Dont be dissapointed by Bing not showing your country in the intial stages of the registration process of your business listing. It allows you to fill your State and City and later it does show the business site on its map. So you can still add your business out of the states regardless of the country you choose. I hope you have figured it out by now as it seems your post was in 2009 but none the less might help other users of the blog ….cheerio

      • Hi Ankit, Our business is in Australia and there is no way for us to register our business on bing local. Do you or does anyone else know when this will be available here.
        Thanks for your help,
        Simon

  6. Great information Lisa. We will definitely get to work on getting our listing on Bing. Thanks for sharing.

  7. @Bronwyn I took a look at the Bing.com/maps in Canada and none of the listings including the recommended searches (Tim Hortons, Vancouver etc.) that Bing offers had additional information which would lead me to believe that the option to claim your listing is not yet available in Canada.

    A search on Twitter turns up a few others asking about it but there doesn’t seem to be any official info anywhere.

    Its unfortunate, but on the bright side you know your competitors haven’t claimed their listings yet either.

  8. TJ McCue

    Hey Lisa,
    Great work with this post. You’ve taught us the new basics with Bing in this always changing search marketing landscape, but also landed on Page 1 of Google results for Bing Local Search. I appreciate that you avoid getting into the arguments about if Bing can usurp Google and all that. What matters is how we can use it, use it quickly to help our businesses. Thanks for cutting to the chase right away.
    Taking my client to Bing this week…

  9. I’ve tried using Bing for awhile, but i doubt i could use it full time. I like how they finally got a google calculator equivalent, the video is pretty good too, but occasionally i find myself needing to go back to Google for searches. Most of the time i was more than satisfied with the searches, especially the little pop up bubble of info next to the searches, it also provides strict search results so it may prove to be a good competition to Google in the future.

  10. First time to hear about Bing, Lisa! The Bing word doesn’t seem to be really appealing but I know this is worth the try. Will check this out!

  11. Great info, Lisa. Small businesses should grab their own local listings in every search engine and you’re making it easy. I’ve pointed BuyerZone readers to your site so they can get in on the action as well.

  12. Great post. Bing is another great tool for driving local traffic. I have been recommending it as well as Google Maps to all my business clients. I go as far as helping them create their business listings along with the other services we provide.

  13. Great post on how to effectively use Bing to get local listings. There are a few other good tools Bing offers for small business – like their Webmaster Central and Product Feed. I wrote a blog post about it as well because it’s a very important topic for any small business.

  14. Yes, there is a good excuse to not claim your listing, when Bing doesn’t allow it! If you are a company registered in the U.S. but headquartered outside of the U.S. as we are, in Beijing, you cannot get a listing. Hopefully they will take care of this problem as they continue the roll-out, but this sure seems to be a huge problem, as our Canadian brethren pointed out above.

  15. I’ve been focusing on Google Local Search, so thanks for filling in the gaps with Bing. Good to have something else to work on.

  16. I wants to add my local business listing at bing but when we submit the form then bing shows the listing of only american cities although i wants to add my listing in india. Plz help me, i am waiting for your response you can contact me through email.

    Thanks

  17. Hello,

    I want to add my local business to bing.com How do i do that ?

    can anyone help me to do that please?

    Regards,
    Mihir
    ask4itsolutions.com

  18. Bing and Yahoo both have left Canadians out in the cold ( no pun intended) to allow us to add local listings to their maps. I guess only Google cares about Canadians.

  19. Still trying to find out how to submit my Canadian business with bing local listing…

    Niaz Abbas

  20. Hi Canada Local SEO,

    You did not leave a web address where I can view this article that you are speaking of. I am trying to register a Canadian business… Does anyone know how I do so?

    Thanks for your assistance!

  21. The question that next comes up is: how does Bing arrive at those top 8 listings?

  22. Yet again Microsoft thinks that the world ends at America’s borders.

    How can they try to compete with the likes of Google when they can’t even see that there are people outside of the USA that do local searches too. Such as in the UK, Australia, Europe?!?

    Restricting the ability to add a local listing in BING to US only is a little bit annoying for the rest of us elsewhere.

  23. I like the way google local listing works

  24. Article is of helpful, but it seems Bing doesn’t allow local listing outside of USA, like India. Still I can see few listing already added in Bing, but not sure how to add the same. Please share if somebody knows the way for submitting Bing local listing outside USA.

  25. i think that Bing is not as good as Google. Google would still index new websites faster than Bing. Microsoft would still need a lot of catching to do with GoogleBot.

  26. Anyone interested in getting into Bing’s Canadian local listings should know that, at this time it is using YellowPages.ca data just like Yahoo Local Canada is using.

    At this point, unfortunately, I do not know of another way in and the DB that “Canada Local SEO” (aka Ramit) posted does not work as far as I can tell (and as others have noted).

    Also, you can add content by going to Bing Maps and adding a Pushpin where your locations are. I have not completed any testing on just how well that works – in terms of marketing – however, it does work.

  27. After re-reading my post, I should clarify that Bing appears to be using YellowPages.ca data (just like Yahoo is), however, I have not seen evidence of a formal partnership (except of course between Bing & Yahoo) that the Yellow Pages is the source. It could very well be that the information is from a generic database of Canadian business addresses – an outdated one at that.

  28. No matter how nice Bing local listings looks, if people can only add listings from the USA then they are in trouble.

    I understand the average American only seeing Canada when thinking of the rest of the world. But here in Europe and Asia, we can’t add our local listing either.

    We are allowed to get the TV advets spamming our screens, but not actually a way to get listed.

    Great work Microsoft…..

  29. please can you help me? i have been trying to get my business details listed on bing/multimap since the launch of Bing in 2009, i have submitted my company details about 5 times with a company called Market Location and i have phoned them about 10 times to ask them why my company does not appear in search results. they just tell me everytime that they have got my company details and that they have forwarded them to Bing. this is so very annoying as my competitors are showing in the search results and i can hardly ask them how they got themselves listed. does anyone have the definitive answer? when are Microsoft / Bing going to get this sorted out so that there is a level playing field for all businesses?

  30. Rachel DiGiammarino

    I am interested to know exactly where & how a Canadian business can submit their info for a local listing on Bing. I see lots of other people asking the question but no answers. Thanks!

  31. is it live for India?

  32. At this time, Canadian local listings on Bing are still being supplied by the Yellow Page Group.
    Andy :-)

  33. Thank you Lisa for sharing this great post. I got it now clearly how to get listed at Bing local listing but I a have a question. What do you think about sitemap submission at Bing?

    Thanks in advanced
    Alex

  34. Hate to say it, but it takes way too long for Bing to respond to incorrect listings. Bing sends confirmation/verification letters, whereas Google uses an instant phone system to verify addresses. It’s been a topic of constant frustration, especially when my business is reliant on foot traffic.

  35. Interesting reply re: Stacy’s comment about Bing’s response time. Been meaning to look into Local listings with Bing – have had great success with Google, but surprised with the upswing in Local Search marketing that Bing would lag behind.

    Anyone else seen this happening?

  36. We were able to successfully add our Canadian listing to the Bing Local Listing Center: https://ssl.bing.com/listings/ListingCenter.aspx

    This was done by being logged in and clicking on the “Change your business listing” link, and as others have said the listing itself appears to have come from Yellowpages.

    Unfortunately, there’s nothing that can be done with it. The status shows as “Incomplete” and when clicking on Edit Listing the same error pops up:

    “We’re sorry

    Something went wrong. Please try again later.”

    Perhaps the edit feature will work one day, but right now nothing can be done.

  37. My local business listing is on top of yahoo and google. I have been trying to get on bing’s list for the last 4-5 months. It just won’t let my site listed even when the status shows ” Published”. This is local US business! HELP!!!! It also takes forever to get verified.

  38. What about if you are in Australia. What website do I go to?

  39. First time user on BING. It is a little hard getting used to after utilizing other SEOs. But over time, like anything else it will get easier. BING does have a good eye-appeal and it is relatively user friendly for the additional options.

  40. Appreciate the information. It seems there are two alternative ways of approaching this. I first used the Bing webmaster center, but that just seems to associate a site without showing a maps option. Youe link looks better, but doesn’t acknowledge that the site was already listed using the bing webmaster tools. Perhaps the site needs to be crawled first. Anyway. thanks.

  41. Thank you so much for posting this! My manager and I were totally stuck as to how to “claim” our property, and it wouldn’t show up anywhere. What a hassle huh? Our verification is now pending :) Thanks again!
    ~Assistant innkeeper Lacey
    Arlington’s River Rock Inn
    360-403-7014

  42. The page for adding a listing is only for American sites. I cannot see a way to upload photos, or add a Canadian listing at all. It’s most frustrating, as the google & yelp place pages are SO easy to edit and verify.

    If anyone knows how to claim a Canadian business, get my hours, photos, etc up, it would be FANTASTIC to know!!!

  43. Shame that this service is limited to the USA. Google implement a great worldwide service.

  44. At this time, Canadian local listings on Bing are still being supplied by the Yellow Page Group.

    I’m now doing Search Optimization in Calgary – thus the URL changes – thanks ;-)

  45. A yellowpages + microsoft partnership does not inspire lots of confidence.

    Hopefully they “fix” these issues soon.

  46. Does Bing allow local listing in India? Thanks.

  47. Who to get local listing in NT of AUS ?

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