As for the quality of search, the results are comparable if not better than Google’s results in most cases. In any case, you can certainly expect Bing to stay around for quite some time unlike other search engines that have tried to challenge Google.
So while it is around, here are a few tips and tricks that you can use to search even better on the Bing search engine:
Turn Off The Background Image
If for any reason you want to turn off the background image, you can do so by visiting www.bing.com/?rb=0. For convenience you can also bookmark this page so that you are taken to it automatically the next time you want to search on Bing.
Generate An RSS Feed For Search Results
You can easily create an RSS feed for search results of any query by simply appending ‘&format=rss‘ at the end of the search query in the address bar of the browser.
Get A Weather Forecast
You can get weather forecasts from the Bing search box by typing the name of the city followed by weather or forecast. For example, New Delhi forecast would give you the weather forecast for New Delhi.
Additionally you can suffix units of measurement to get the results according to your preference. New Delhi weather celsius for example would give you the same result but in Celsius this time.
Calculations, Units & Currency Conversion
Google does it and now Bing does it as well. Nothing fancy about conversions. You key in the value or equation and the units and the Bing search engine will give you the solution as the result of the search query. 220 km in miles would return 137.76. Similarly currency conversions and mathematical equations work just as well.
Add Your Preference For A Particular Result Type
You can use the prefer:<keyword> option to give additional weightage to results that contain the keyword. Say you are looking for content management systems, but you are interested in PHP CMS(es) all the more. In such a case you can search for content management system prefer:php to refine your search and give more weightage or importance to PHP CMS(es).
Using Bing you can also track flights easily. All that is required is the airline name and the flight number. Enter ‘flight status‘ in the search box and Bing will prompt you for the airline and flight number. Key them in and click on get status to get the status of a flight.
Search Sites With A Specific Filetype
You can add contains:<fileExtension> to any search query to return results only from the sites that contain a file of the said extension. For example, mercurial guide contains:pdf would return results from sites which have a PDF file hosted on them.
Limit Search Results To A Specific Country
Search engines by default provide you with an option to search only pages from your country. Using the local version of Bing, I for example get the option to search only pages from India. But what if you want to search webpages from other countries?
You can use the ‘loc‘ operator to achieve this. archaeology loc:US for example will return pages containing archeology, but limit the results to pages from the US only.
Get Live Stock Quotes
You can enter the ticker symbol along with the word stock to get the stock quotes. AAPL stock for example would return the stock quote for Apple.
See If Your Site Is Indexed & How Many Pages
You can quickly check to see if your site has been indexed by Bing by using the “url” keyword. url:yoursite.com will let you see if your site has been indexed by Bing or not. On the other hand if you want to see how many pages of your site have been indexed you can use the “site” keyword along with your site name. site:yoursite.com would return all the pages from your site that are present in Bing’s index.
Its your turn now. You might have discovered little tricks of your own with the Bing search engine that have not been mentioned in the article. Feel free to share them with us in the comments. We would love to hear about them.