Bing brings back banned sites

Posted on December 20, 2011

 

There was somewhat of a furore caused by Bing last week, as it was revealed that it had banned a number of sites, specifically targeted at the Cyber Monday shopping frenzy, and has now brought them back.

The Microsoft search engine cited the sites’ content as being too weak and thin, and even went as far as comparing many established business tantamount to seasonal spam sites.

As a result, a proactive strike was made to remove a number of sites from the listings. That Google had the same sites rating highly and one of them, CyberMonday.com, being run by the group that created the concept, did make it seem an odd move.

Now, with an apparent algorithm change, these sites have been let back in. The official statement stated:

“We have revised our algorithm (letting) previously blocked sites (return) to the index.”

Many analysts of search marketing have poured scorn on the whole episode. Many have claimed that quite apart from interrogating content, it simply blocked any site with ‘Cyber Monday’ or ‘Black Friday’ in the domain or title.

In keeping with the fashionable trend for a conspiracy, others have claimed the action had been taken in order to advance its own Bing Shopping service.

This claim was dismissed out of hand.

Whatever the truth, the whole affair certainly outraged many retailers; even more perhaps that they were allowed back in within days of their most profitable period passing.

Though this was clearly a move which unfairly affected reputable businesses, it does highlight the importance of useful content. Even if a site is merely a forum for offers, deals and links, this is still true.

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