Eggs, bacon, spam, spam, and spam (SEM 101)

What is spam? One could argue that spam is a multi-faceted thing. The word itself has many definitions. For example, it can be defined as a processed spiced ham and pork slathered with a gelatinous glaze food product found in a tin (it’s apparently very popular in Hawai’i, don’t you know?). However, spam is also often used to reference a very popular comedy sketch written and performed on Monty Python’s Flying Circus (it...
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IIS SEO Toolkit 1.0 hits the streets! (SEM 101)

In August, we alerted webmasters to the news from the Microsoft Internet Information Services (IIS) team of the beta 1 release of their excellent new tool, the IIS SEO Toolkit. The public response we received was very enthusiastic and supportive. In response to many requests, we followed that up with a more detailed article explaining how the new tool is installed as an extension of IIS 7. Since that time, the tool was refreshed in a beta 2...
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Webmaster Center blog comments Q&A, Round 2

We still get many questions in our blog comments, even though we try to encourage our readers to post their questions to our Webmaster Center forums (which are actually staffed to answer your questions!). I do look through the blog comments every day and delete those that are junk (those that are empty, duplicated, offensive, and overtly spammy – see our Q&A reply on why blog comments are deleted in the 1st Webmaster Center blog Q&A...
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Link building for smart webmasters (no dummies here) (SEM 101)

In past SEM 101 articles, we’ve talked about the importance of inbound links to successful ranking (see “Links: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” – Part 1 and Part 2). We’ve already discussed many issues surrounding them, but we haven’t done a dedicated post on how to be successful at link building from a search engine’s perspective. Let’s finally address that omission here and now. What is the point...
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Robots speaking many languages

We’ve already covered in past blog articles some of the basics about how webmasters can use a file called robots.txt to control how search engine crawlers (aka bots) crawl their websites. But there is so much more to talk about with bots. So let’s take a bit of a deeper dive into the subject. Topic 1: Using the proper text file encoding The robots.txt file is used by webmasters to either specifically define which files and directories...
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Fixing 404 File Not Found frustrations (SEM 101)

You’ve seen it. So have I. Nearly every person who has actively browsed the Web for more than 15 minutes has seen it. I’m talking about the dreaded 404 File Not Found error. When it occurs, users simply abandon their search on that site and go elsewhere. That’s a potential lost sale, subscription, or download opportunity (aka conversion) for the affected site! It has been estimated that up to 10% of traffic to large websites on...
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Webmaster Center blog Q&A

We’ve been really busy here at the Bing Webmaster Center blog team, pumping out new content on a regular basis to create a nice library of content on issues that matter to webmasters and online publishers. I thought I’d take a moment to catch my breath, pause on creating a new thematic article (or yet another multi-part series!) for SEM 101, and address some commonly asked questions in the blog comments. Q: Why wasn’t my...
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The merciless malignancy of malware Part 4 (SEM 101)

OK, so I totally geeked out with my recommendations on how to better secure your webmaster computing environment. As a result, I had too much material for one post and thus had to split it up into two pieces. Let's wrap up this long series of posts on malware by finishing up with the last of the security recommendations.
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The merciless malignancy of malware Part 3 (SEM 101)

We're going to diverge a bit from our regularly scheduled programming. Normally this column discusses search engine optimization (SEO) and related elements of search engine marketing (SEM), but we're knee deep into our multi-part series on malware and we're going to begin the wrap-up with a talk about improving computer security.
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The merciless malignancy of malware Part 2 (SEM 101)

Malware infections are no laughing matter. When they afflict your website, they can infect your customers, who won't appreciate your sharing, intentional or not (and I'm guessing it's not)! And if Bing discovers malware on your site, your listing in the Bing search engine results pages (SERPs) will either be completely omitted or the link to your site will be disabled, so when the searcher clicks on it, only a malware warning appears.
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