Bing indexing API

In this SEO tutorial, we will touch on Bing Indexing API. This Bing URL and Content Submission API will instantly index your website content on Bing. Getting your content indexed on search engines like Google and Bing is the first step towards driving organic traffic from search engines. But when content isn’t properly indexed, let alone indexed at all. It can’t rank. And if it never ranks, it’ll never drive organic traffic from search.

To overcome this – in the past, we’ve thoroughly covered how to get Google to crawl your content instantly. Now let’s take this a step further, by using the Bing Instant Indexing API (in a similar way) to get your website’s pages and content crawled instantly.

What is Bing Indexing API?

Earlier this year, Bing announced the release of its newly updated URL submission plugin which essentially allows website owners to notify Bing whenever their content changes. The Bing URL submission tool allows submission of up to 10,000 URLs per day and works closely together with the indexing API to get the content indexed by Bing in real-time. The Bing Indexing API is an Easy plug-in API solution that websites can call to notify Bing whenever website contents are updated or created allowing instant crawling, indexing, and discovery of your site content.

What is Content Submission API?

Easy to plug-in API solution that websites can call to directly send content to Bing whenever website contents is updated or created without waiting for bingbot crawl.

Why You Need The Bing Indexing API

While Bing is a greatly underrated search engine, it has a few advantages over Google. With the Bing indexing API, the bingbot crawler has become almost as powerful as the Google crawler bots. Once you install and configure the Bing indexing API, you essentially power your website content and drive it on search results almost immediately.

Some of the most attractive features on the newly updated indexing API include:

  • Automatic submission of new content to Bing for instant indexing
  • Increased daily quota of URLs submitted per day from 10URLS  to 10,000URLs
  • Reduced bot activity on your website by reducing crawling frequency

Rather than relying on RSS feeds and sitemaps to get your content discovered on search, the Bing API allows your website to automatically notify (ping) Bing whenever you make any changes on your website. Ultimately, the goal here is to ensure that website owners and content creators keep their content fresh and updated in the Bing index.

How To Get Your Website Crawled Instantly by Bing Indexing API

Let’s be honest. With the competition most of us are up against, you really should use every (regardless of how simple/seemingly small) edge to stay ahead of the curve. Thankfully, with the URL Submission feature that Rank Math SEO now offers – we make it extremely easy for search engines to instantly crawl your URLs as soon as you publish or update them.

So, without further ado, let’s get started & show you how to set up the Bing Indexing API on your website with Rank Math SEO…

1 Install and Setup Rank Math

To begin with – if you haven’t already – you’ll need to install the Rank Math plugin and run the setup wizard to get started.DOWNLOAD RANK MATH

Thankfully, if you’re an existing Rank Math SEO user and already have the plugin installed on the WordPress website you’d like to connect with the Bing Instant Indexing API, you can skip this step.

2 Verify Your Website on Bing Webmaster Tools

First and foremost, you have to verify your website on Bing Webmaster Tools.

(a) Open Bing Webmaster Tools

(b) Login to your Bing account.

You can choose from 3 options as shown below.

Login to your Bing Account

(c) You will see two options once you login.

i. Verify via Google Search Console:

If your website is already verified on Google Search Console, you can choose this step. You will only need to click a few buttons and you are done.

ii. Add your site Manually:

This is the option we will cover further.

(d) Choose “Add Your Site Manually” Option

Enter Your website URL in the designated field and click the “Add” button.

enter your website URL on Bing

(e) Choose Verification Method

Next, you will get a few options to choose from. For the sake of keeping this tutorial simple, we will choose the HTML Meta Tag option and use that to verify our website using Rank Math.

(f) Copy the Meta Tag code that you generated.

Copy the Bing verification code

(g) Paste the Code in Rank Math SEO

Paste the Code in Rank Math SEO by going to WordPress Dashboard > Rank Math > General Settings > Webmaster Tools and save the changes.

Paste the Bing Verification Code in Rank Math

(h) Go back to Bing Webmaster Tools and Hit the Verify Button

Hit the Verify Button in Bing

Et Voila!

Your website is now verified in the Bing Webmaster Tools and can proceed with further steps.

3 Enable the Instant Indexing API module

Now that you’ve installed Rank Math, simply head over to WordPress Dashboard > Rank Math > Dashboard

This is where you’ll be able to activate the various modules that Rank Math as well as for Rank Math PRO include (if you have an active subscription).

The Instant Indexing API module is included with the free version out of the box. So from here, all you’ll need to do is enable the Instant Indexing API as shown in the screenshot below:

Enable Instant Indexing Module

4 Configure Your Site’s Instant Indexing Settings

Instant Indexing Menu Link

Once the module is enabled, head over to WordPress Dashboard > Rank Math > Instant Indexing and you’ll see the following settings:

Bing Submission API Key

This is where you’ll need to enter the Bing API key we’ll get in the next step…

5 Get Your Bing API Key

Follow the below steps to get your API Key from Bing Webmaster Tools.

Step 1: Visit Bing Webmaster Tools

Enter your logins if you aren’t already logged in. Use the same account details you used to verify your website on Bing. If your website isn’t already verified, you can do that using Rank Math as well by entering your Bing verification code at WordPress Dashboard > Rank Math > General Settings > Webmaster Tools.

Step 2: Locate the “Gear” Icon At The Top-Right

Click the gear icon and then click on the “API Access” option.

Bing Webmasters Settings

Step 3: Select The API Key Option

Since for this particular setup, we’ll be using an API Key as opposed to (OAuth Authentication), select the option highlighted below:

Get Bing API Key

Step 4: Generate Your Bing API Key

Now, to generate your API key – simply click the Generate API Key button.

Generate Bing API Key

Step 5: Copy The Generated API Key

Simply copy the generated API key as shown below so you can easily add it to Rank Math’s Instant Indexing settings.

Copy Bing API Key

6 Add Your API Key To Rank Math’s Instant Indexing Settings

Head back to Rank Math SEO settings and go to the Instant Indexing section. Simply enter the API key that you copied from Bing’s Webmaster Tools in the previous step.

Make sure to choose the type of content (Posts, Pages, Media, or CPTs) you would like to be submitted automatically.

Enter API key in the Rank Math

That’s it! You’ve now successfully set up the Instant Indexing API with Bing and every time you publish a new post or update an existing one, Rank Math SEO will automatically submit the URL to Bing based on your selected settings.

Bing URL Submission

Note: The Quota you see in the Instant Indexing section depends on the age of your website. It can range from 10 submissions per day for new websites or 10,000 for fairly established ones.

The Quota resets every 24 hours.

7 Manual URL Submission Through Rank Math

You can also manually submit the URLs for instant indexing to Bing via the Rank Math SEO plugin.

(a) Head over to WordPress Dashboard > Rank Math > Instant Indexing

(b) Click on the URL Submission tab.

Bing Manual URL Submission

(c) Enter URLs of the posts/pages/products you would like to submit yo Bing. You can use multiple URLs here but make sure to use one URL per line – up to a total of 500 URLs.

You can not only submit URL of the website where Rank Math SEO installed – but also ALL websites in the Bing account you used to generate the API.

Note: Only websites verified in your Bing Webmasters tool can be submitted from here.

Manually Submitting URLs to Bing

If you’re unable to use Rank Math because your website isn’t powered by WordPress or you are on WordPress but you want to submit your URLs manually then make use of Bing’s Submit URL tool manually (as shown below).

bing-manual-url-submission

Verify your Website on Bing Webmasters

As a pre-requisite, you will need to verify your website on Bing webmaster tools before using the Bing indexing API. To do this, head over to Bing Webmasters and sign up for an account (log in if you already have one). In the “Add a Site” section, enter the URL of your website and click “Add”. You should see several verification methods here.

One of the most common ways to verify your website on Bing is by adding a small HTML file on the root directory of your website. Just choose the HTML verification method and download the HTML file provided by Bing. Log into your Cpanel account and upload the file on your root directory (usually public_html folder). And voila! Your website is now verified on Bing.

Even easier, if you already have a Google Webmaster account (Search Console), Bing now allows you to import all your settings from this account. All you need to do is authorize Bing to pull this data from search console to your Bing dashboard. This is the easiest method to verify your website on Bing.

How to Configure Bing Indexing API on WordPress

WordPress powers over 30% of the indexable web today, so I’m going to cover this tutorial on WordPress. If you are a WordPress developer, the Bing URL submission tool is an open-source project, so you can also browse and contribute to the code improvements directly on GitHub.

Install and Activate the Plugin

On your WordPress dashboard, head over to plugins and click “Add New”. In the plugin repository, search and install the “Bing URL Submissions Plugin”. Once the plugin is activated, go to the plugin settings to configure the API. Here you should see a box prompting you to add the Bing API

Configure the API under Settings

To get your API key, head back to your Bing webmaster portal and click on “Settings”. Under API Access, click on “API Key”. Copy your unique API key from here and paste it under the plugin settings on WordPress. Please note that only one API key can be generated per user. You can change your API key anytime; the changes should reflect within 30 minutes.

Configuring Bing Indexing API for Non-WordPress

If you are not a WordPress user, you can use a few protocols e,g SOAP along with the Bing Webmaster API. Once your website is verified on Bing Webmasters, use any of the below protocols to integrate the Bing Indexing API and automatic URL submission feature into your custom website.

JSON request sample

[php]POST /webmaster/api.svc/json/SubmitUrl?
apikey=sampleapikeyEDECC1EA4AE341CC8B6 HTTP/1.1
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8
Host: ssl.bing.com

{
"siteUrl":"http://example.com",
"url":"http://example.com/url1.html"
} [/php]

XML Request sample

[xml]POST /webmaster/api.svc/pox/SubmitUrl?apikey=sampleapikey341CC57365E075EBC8B6 HTTP/1.1
Content-Type: application/xml; charset=utf-8
Host: ssl.bing.com

<SubmitUrl xmlns="http://schemas.datacontract.org/2004/07/Microsoft.Bing.Webmaster.Api">
<siteUrl>http://example.com</siteUrl>
<url>http://example.com/url1.html</url>
</SubmitUrl> [/xml]

If the URL submission is successful, you should receive an HTTP 200 response. This indicates that the Bing Indexing API is configured correctly and that Bing can directly see any changes you make within a few minutes. If your content follows the Bing webmaster guidelines, it should be crawled and indexed in real-time.


8 Common Questions & Errors

Does Bing’s Instant Indexing API index all submitted URLs?

Not necessarily. Bing still makes use of various algorithms to determine whether or not a URL is to be considered valid & therefore be accepted.

Can I submit URLs that no longer exist to inform Bing they are gone?

Yes, this is a great way to quickly remove content. You can submit URLs that have been removed and now show return 404 and 410 errors. When you delete a post or page, Rank Math SEO automatically does this for you.

Note: These URLs will still count towards your quota.

Why should I use the Bing Instant Indexing API?

With how competitive the industry you’re trying to drive traffic to your website in, every advantage you can get matters. And with Rank Math’s Instant Indexing module for Bing, ranking new pages within minutes is possible.

Does Bing accept and rank all submitted URLs?

No, if only it were that easy! Bing doesn’t automatically accept all URLs you submit (obviously). It still analyzes every webpage to ensure that it meets its quality standards.

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