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Microsoft Bing Ads Best Practices

Best practices for Bing Ads account management include:

  • Filtering out wasteful, irrelevant clicks and non-converting traffic with negative keywords
  • Maximizing keyword relevance across your campaigns for higher Quality Scores
  • Raising click-through rates with strong keyword, text ad, and ad group targeting and organization
  • Practicing regular, active account management and optimization
  • Expanding and refining your campaigns with long-tail keyword research
  • Testing multiple text ads to optimize CTR, conversion rate and cost per conversion
  • Creating unique, targeted, well-designed landing pages for each ad group
  • Making use of Bing Ads’ unique keyword matching options and other settings that improve targeting
  • Leveraging mobile PPC features like call extensions and sitelinks to improve conversions

Are you following these all-important best practices in your own Bing Ads campaigns? Or do you only think you are? Don’t leave your paid search success to chance – get the data you need to make informed decisions about your Bing Ads campaigns.

What is Bing Ads?

Bing Ads is Microsoft's pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platform that enables business to create ad campaigns on Microsoft, MSN and Yahoo! properties.

Bing Ads uses a paid search advertising model, in which users bid on the keywords they want to have trigger their advertisements. Your Bing ads are then displayed alongside search results on Bing and Microsoft’s partner network when someone uses one of your keywords in their search query.

The prevalence of your advertisements appearing depends on which keywords and match types you select. WordStream offers a number of free keyword tools that can assist in your PPC keyword research, as well as informative, free white papers on topics such as Bing Ads match types.

While a number of factors determine a successful Bing Ads campaign, much can be achieved by focusing on:

Relevance - Crafting relevant Bing Ads keyword lists, tight Bing Ads keyword groups, and proper ad text.

Quality Score - Microsoft's rating of the quality and relevance of your keywords and PPC campaigns. Although there are many different factors that play a role in how Bing Ads’ Quality Score algorithm is calculated, three of the most important are:

  • Keyword relevance
  • Landing page relevance
  • Landing page user experience

Bing Ads vs. AdWords: How Do Microsoft Bing Ads and Google AdWords Differ?

Although both Bing Ads and Google AdWords function in similar ways, there are distinct differences between the two paid search platforms. The most significant difference between Bing Ads and Google AdWords is the search networks throughout which advertisers’ ads can appear.

Bing Ads leverages the power of the Bing Network, effectively allowing your ads to appear alongside relevant searches on two different search engines. In addition, Bing Network partner sites also display Bing Ads, thus allowing you to expand your potential reach.

Bing Ads makes it easy for AdWords advertisers to import AdWords campaigns directly into Bing Ads, reducing the time necessary to set up and optimize imported campaigns. However, Bing Ads handles some keyword match types slightly differently from AdWords. For example, Bing Ads does not support broad matching for negative keywords, and this type of keyword match changes to a phrase match when imported from AdWords.

Another key difference between Bing Ads and Google AdWords is how Quality Score is calculated, and how this formula is used. Although algorithmic specifics are proprietary to both platforms, some elements of Bing Ads’ Quality Score calculation are based on a gradient, meaning that performing poorly in one area may not have as severe an impact on overall Quality Score as it might in Google AdWords. Another interesting fact to be aware of is that Quality Score is not a determining factor in Ad Rank in Bing Ads – think of it as a window into your account performance, rather than part of the algorithm that determines where your ads are placed.

Can I Do Pay-Per-Click Advertising By Myself?

Anyone with a website and credit card can do pay-per-click advertising on Bing Ads. However, we've found that most advertisers are not well-informed on how to create an effective advertising campaign to drive paid clicks to real business leads. 

What Is a Good Quality Score in Bing Ads?

Microsoft's Bing Ads Quality Score is a grading system that judges your ads and gives you a "score." Having a good Bing Ads Quality Score is essential to a successful Bing Ads campaign.

Microsoft's quality rating has a powerful influence over the cost-effectiveness of your paid search campaigns, making it essential to have a good Quality Score in Bing Ads. Having a high Quality Score is a tremendous benefit to your Bing Ads campaign, as it provides you with:

  • Lower costs - Microsoft rewards advertisers with high Quality Scores by lowering their cost per click (CPC), which can subsequently lower your cost per conversion.
  • More exposure - When you have high Quality Scores, your ads will display more often and in better positions. You can get more exposure, more clicks, and more conversions without having to raise your bids.

Your Bing Ads Quality Score is determined by several factors:

A higher Quality Score equates to more impressions at lower costs, lowering your cost per click and cost per action.

Having a high Quality Score is key, but it can often be difficult to manage the varying factors that contribute to Quality Score single handedly. WordStream offers easy-to-use and expertly engineered PPC management software that is specifically designed to improve your Bing Ads Quality Score.

What Is a Good Click-Through Rate (CTR) on Bing Ads?

Click-through rate (CTR) measures the percentage of clicks advertisers receive on their ads per the number of impressions. "Impressions" refers to how often your ad is viewed-if your ad has a lot of impressions but no clicks, you will have a low CTR, which generally reduces the effectiveness of your campaigns.

Click-through rate is important because it affects your Quality Score, making a high CTR an essential component of a profitable Bing Ads campaign.

Bing Ads and other search marketing platforms offer pricing discounts for ads that have high relevance, providing searchers with the ads they want to find. Bing Ads gives high Quality Scores to advertisers with high Bing Ads click-through rates. In sum:

What Are Negative Keywords in Bing Ads?

Negative keywords serve as essential building blocks in establishing a successful keyword list.

Adding a negative keyword to your Bing Ads ad group or campaign ensures that your ad will not appear for search queries containing that term. Using negative keywords in your Bing Ads campaign is beneficial because they reduce clicks on irrelevant or low commercial intent terms which don't convert, reducing wasted ad spend.

Bing Ads and other search marketing platforms offer pricing discounts for ads that have high relevance, providing searchers with the ads they want to find. Bing Ads gives high Quality Scores to advertisers with high Bing Ads click-through rates. In sum:

Discovering Negative Keywords

Finding negative keywords and adding them to your account can be a difficult and tedious process. Digging through Bing Ads search query reports is a slow, redundant process, and Bing Ads limits how much query data is visible to advertisers.

WordStream offers an innovative, free negative keyword tool that makes finding negative keywords easy. It's also a proactive method of negative keyword discovery, enabling you to weed irrelevant keywords out of your campaigns before they can cost you a cent.

To learn more about how to use negative keywords, read our free white paper on negative keywords.

What Makes a Good Landing Page for Bing Ads?

Having a well-crafted landing page is a major component of a good Bing Ads Quality Score. From the moment a prospective customer reaches your landing page, everything should be tailored to helping the customer find what they are searching for and assist them towards a conversion.

A successful landing page requires a number of different elements:

The better the landing page, the more conversions you are likely to achieve. Expertly designed landing pages have a powerful impact on both SEO and PPC marketing campaigns.

Organic Search Benefits: Keyword-relevant content results in higher rankings in the SERPs for the keywords you're targeting, bringing more visibility and more traffic.

Pay-Per-Click Benefits: Keyword-specific Bing Ads landing pages are much more likely to earn strong Quality Scores and high conversion rates, as the landing pages will be more aligned with the searcher's intent.

While a better optimized landing page will help increase conversion rates, depending on what you are trying to persuade visitors to do, what constitutes a "good" conversion rate will vary.

A "good" conversion rate depends on what the desired conversion is. Conversion rates will tend to be higher if visitors are asked to sign up with a simple form to receive something free. If visitors have to fill out a lengthy survey or provide credit card information, conversion rates will be lower. While conversions can range from 0-50%, 2% is quite common.