Microsoft Updates Live Search Webmaster Tools With Crawl Issue and Backlink Tools
Yesterday marked a Big Update to Webmaster Tools for Microsoft’s Live Search Webmaster Tools. They announced on their blog that they have added additional tools to the suite as well as taking it out of beta. Live Search Webmaster Tools was originally released as a beta back in November of 2007. Since then they have continued to make improvements and additions to the webmaster center.
One of the notable addition I found was the new Crawl Issues Tool. This tool will help you find indexing problems with your site. It can identify file not found (404) errors, blocked pages, long dynamic URLs, and unsupported content-types (Windows Live Help). Filtering by 2 subdomains or folders is now available for errors with 1000 or more occurrences. Because the basic output is limited to 20 results, there is also the ability to export the results as a CSV file. The exported file will contain the first 1000 records of the specified error.
The other notable addition is a Backlinks Tool that helps you discover where your inbound links are coming from. This information is very valuable for tracking where you could advertise or promote products. The links can help you understand your demographics better and market more effectively and efficiently. This tool includes the ability to filter your incoming links to a certain section of your website as well as to view all incoming links or just incoming links from other websites (excluding any incoming links from other pages on your site). Not only does this feature help you learn who is linking to your site for demographic purposes, but it also provides information about how well your site may rank. Backlinks play a part in how well your site ranks in a search, so you will want to know who is linking to you (websites with high credibility that link to you will increase your rank in a search, while websites with low credibility that link to you will lower your rank in a search). Downloading the first 1000 results as a CSV is available with this tool as well.
Overall, I think these are great improvements and additions. I think that they were expected to be released at some point in order to compete and to provide important information. I hope that the Live Search Webmaster Tools will continue to add useful and helpful features that I can use to rank better in the SEO game.