Note: This article contains references to Advanced Web Ranking Desktop, a version that is no longer under active development. 

Dear Bing API Developer: This is a reminder that the Bing Search API 2.0 will continue to be available until August 1, 2012.

So begins the latest email that came from Bing, announcing the deprecation of the Bing Search API 2.0. This means that, starting from tomorrow, the old Bing API keys will no longer return results.

The good news is that there is a new Bing API available, that has already been integrated in Advanced Web Ranking in the latest build released for version 9.1.

To continue to retrieve rankings in AWR through Bing API, you will need to enter a new key in the application. The new Bing Search API will provide access to Web, Image, Video, News, and related search results.

Let’s go together through the Bing API sign up process and entering the new key in Advanced Web Ranking.

Retrieving the new API key

To get a new Bing API key, you need to sign up  to the Bing service on the Windows Azure Marketplace and choose the package that you will further use. The packages available in Bing’s offer include 5,000 – 2,500,000 transactions per month, according to the number of search requests you need to perform through this API.

For this example, I will use the free package, that has 5,000 transactions per month.

So, once you click on the Sign Up button for the plan selected, you’ll be redirected to a page where you need to log into your Microsoft account. If you don’t have one yet, you can easily create one from this page.

When the registration steps are completed, and your request for the free package has been confirmed, click on the Sign Up button (again :))  to complete the subscription for the Bing Search API.

This will only take a few seconds. The new API key that was generated for you will be available in the “My Account” page, under the “Primary Account Key” section.

Integration with AWR

Next, you will need to enter the new API key that you just received in Advanced Web Ranking. To do this, just go to Settings -> Performance -> Search Engine API Settings. Here, check the “Bing API Key” check box and copy / paste the API key.

If you already had a Bing API key, just replace it with the new one.

Then click on the “+” button for the modification to become effective. After that, it’s time to start extracting rankings through the new Bing API. Just click on the green Update button in the left – bottom corner and the application will do the job for you.

Changes in the rank tracking process

The most important factors that contribute to a smooth rank tracking process are accuracy, speed and consistency. Here is how implementing the new Bing API in Advanced Web Ranking affects these factors:

  • Ranking Accuracy

By default, rankings retrieved with the new API will show 50 results per page. Following our internal testings, these results are similar to those retrieved directly in AWR, without an API.

  • Update Speed

The delays between queries are more permissive through the API, so rankings are retrieved faster. Keep in mind that you don’t need to change the global default settings of 15-20 random delays between search engine queries. When using the API to gather rankings from Bing, AWR will automatically ignore these delays.

  • Consistency after exceeding the package limitation

For any package that you choose, if you exceed the limitation regarding the number of transactions made in a month, the application will switch to the next Bing API key available in the application, or it will notify you that there are no more transactions available and you will be switched automatically to the direct connection querying.

That’s about it! I hope you enjoyed reading the article. Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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