Learn About Microsoft adCenter (Now Known as Bing Ads)

Microsoft adCenter was a pay-per-click (PPC) advertising platform similar to Google AdWords or Yahoo Search Marketing (YSM).

Microsoft adCenter was previously branded MSN adCenter. Microsoft has since then combined advertising networks with Yahoo! to form a new advertising platform, Yahoo! Bing Network, to serve Bing Ads.

So how does Microsoft advertising or Bing Ads work?

As with Google advertising, whether or not your PPC ad displays and in what position is determined by your maximum bid as well as your ad's click-through rate (CTR) and other factors affecting Quality Score.

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In this guide, we'll share a few best practices for making the most of your online ad campaigns in Microsoft/Bing.

Microsoft Ad Best Practices

To obtain a high Quality Score in Bing Ads, and consequently better online advertising ROI, it's a good idea to follow the PPC best practices that apply to all SEM ad platforms:

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  • Do your research: At the very least, use a basic keyword research tool like WordStream's Google keyword tool, so you know you're bidding on relevant terms.
  • Include keywords in the titles of your text ads.
  • Include several versions of the ad for each ad group for testing; this way you can discover the wording that captures the most clicks.
  • Add and update negatives: Strong use of negative keywords means you can employ the broad match type to it best effect.
  • Use deep links as your destination URLs; these are more likely to be targeted to specific keywords than a home page or broad index page. 

In addition, you should be aware of a few differences between adCenter/Bing and other paid search marketing platforms:

  • You can increase your bid for certain demographics. For example, you can raise your bid by up to 100% for women between the ages of 50 and 70. Your ad will still display for other demographics, but you may get more impressions and better ad positions for that demographic. This is useful if you determine that a certain demographic is more likely to convert.
  • The ad approval process can be more stringent in adCenter, so be sure that your ad is not only highly relevant to the keyword and landing page, but also free of grammar and spelling errors. Don't over-punctuate or use phrases like "Click here!"
  • It's been noted that conversion rates on adCenter tend to be higher than for AdWords or YSM. However, total number of impressions and traffic generated may be lower.
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