Bing has just confirmed at SMX East that they use click through rate (CTR) in their ranking algorithm.
I personally walked over to Steve Tullis, Senior Program Manager Lead, Bing, Microsoft and asked him if he really said they use click through rate in the ranking algorithm. He said, yes we do – but it is one of the many factors.
In my live blogging coverage of the “ask the search engines” panel, I wrote that Steve said they “are using the data to improve the search results. He is saying it in a way that implies it is not site specific but more overall. Not on an individual level.” I then submitted a follow up question:
Q) Do you use CTR as a factor? A) Google said it might be used for user behavior testing, but implied not in the ranking algo.
Bing said if things in the search results that do not get clicked on they will likely lower the ranking. So yes, Bing uses CTR in ranking algo.
So I walked over to Steve to concretely confirm they use CTR and he confirmed it.