Baidu Search Engine Optimization Information
Often referred to as the Chinese Google, Baidu was founded in 2000 by Robin Li (chief executive officer and chairman) and Eric Xu. The name Baidu is derived from a 900 year old Chinese poem from the Song Dynasty, which represents the persistent persuit for the ideal. Headquartered in Beijing China, Baidu also has offices in Shanghai and Shenzhen.
Baidu has had substantial web traffic increases over the last few years due to growing Internet popularity in China. In August 2005, Baidu stock became a very hot commodity, rising 354 percent, from $27 to $122.54 within its first day of trading. Shortly after its stock became very volatile, following extreme downs and ups. At the time this article was written, the California based investment firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson held a 28 percent share in Baidu, valued at 1 billion dollars. Google currently owns a 2.6 percent of Baidu.
Here’s an interesting tidbit Baidu is the first Chinese engine to offer WAP and PDA based mobile search in China. Baidu employs over 700 people (as of July, 2005), and is widely considered China’s largest SE.
Search engine optimization for an index such as Baidu is a very difficult undertaking for any SEO service. The reason being is that Baidu is a Chinese language SE, and Chinese languages are very complex. Unlike western languages, written Chinese languages do not use a phonetic alphabetthey are based on symbols. There are many different ways to pronounce and state common words and there are many different dialects. To make searches easier, Baidu implemented a “phonetic” or “pin-yin” search feature, which allows users to type in Chinese words with the English alphabet. The search index monitors changes for the most frequently searched keywords.
Baidu refers to its engine as “100 Degrees,” which Baidu claims completes 60000000 searches daily. It uses its own proprietary spider called Baiduspider to index web pages, which, according to Baidu, is load capacity friendly, and will not overload your site with visits. Baiduspider also obeys the Internet robot agreement. You may completely forbid baiduspider from indexing all or part of your site by using the robots.txt file.
Baidu’s results are broken into:
Search Result Title: lists the results with links leading directly to those sites.
Search Result Abstract: the abstract lets you judge whether or not a result meets your needs.
Hundred Degrees Snapshot: this is a snapshot summary of a page you are searching for. If you are unable to open the original page or it is being slow, the snapshot provides a text only summary of that page.
Correlation Search: if your search result is not good, for instance if you’ve choosen a poor search term, this section offers alternative suggestions based on popularity.
Baidu provides results from the following categories: Web, Directory, Image, MP3, News, Desktop and Movie (provides information on movies as well as downloads with contracted providers).
Baidu also offers pay-for-performance marketing solutions for businesses to reach customers online (advertisers bid for ad placement amongst relevant search results).
The most popular search category on Baidu at the time this article was written was for MP3 files. The music industry is currently trying to crack down on illegal music downloads occurring in China.