For years now, Google Adwords has had a strangle hold in the online advertising game, and few companies have been able to effectively challenge the search engine titan. However, Bing Ads has covered significant ground over the past few years and has been closing the gap between the two companies. Though Google remains the far more recognizable name among search engines, Bing, which is owned by Microsoft, has benefited from the countless creative tech minds that have helped to keep Microsoft at the top of the global market. When looking to advertise with a major search engine, then, Google is no longer the only viable option. So if your Google Adwords campaigns haven’t been working as well for you lately, or you are just getting into the advertising game, consider these ten reasons why Bing Ads tops Google Adwords before putting any money down.
1: Bing Has the Hardware
As mammoth as Google is, the only way you can even access it is through hardware, and Google doesn’t make hardware, at least not home computers or laptops (their foray into the tablet and cellphone business has dragged down the company’s profits). Microsoft, however, powers 8 of the top 10 selling laptops in the world, so when users open up their new PC, chances are the default search engine is going to be Bing. With Windows 10 having been recently released, and Chris Crum of WebProNews reporting that Microsoft expects to have their operating systems in the hands of over a billion users by 2018, it seems like Microsoft is going to be making Bing a major player in the search engine business over the next couple of years. Without any hardware to promote their search engine, Google will be at a distinct disadvantage.
2: It’s Usually Cheaper
Because Google Adwords is the most popular search engine, far more people use it. While this might get your ad viewed by more people, it doesn’t mean that your dollar will go further. With so many other people bidding on the same words, the cost of each click will rise exponentially. On Bing, you might pay only 25% of what you are paying on Bing, and it might even end up getting your more or as many visitors.
3: Better Incentives
If you’ve signed up for Google Adwords, there’s a pretty good chance you received a card in the mail for $20 in free Adwords money. This means that you can spend a whole $20 to test your ads before sinking any of your money into the service. The problem is, even with a $50 credit, it is difficult to test a campaign, especially given how much more expensive Google is. Bing is far more generous and is currently offering potential users $150 credit to start, and since their ads tend to be significantly cheaper, this $150 will go much farther when it comes to testing your initial campaigns. You could be turning a profit on your ads before you even have to pay for them.
4: More Detailed Control
Since most advertisers are target a national or international audience, being able to make your ads work a specific times in specific time zones. As Mark Irvine from Word Stream observes, Bing allows user to do exactly that. Google doesn’t yet have that option. It also allows other demographic controls, such as age, gender, and devices.
5: Better Stat Tracking
It might be unfair to suggest that Bing Ads have better stats than Google Adwords; both sites have excellent stats. Bing Ads, though, has easily navigable stats that allow you to see what words your keyword combinations cropped with so that you can adjust your keywords to increase your conversion rates. These stats are extensive and are helpful when tweaking your campaigns. Google Adwords has similar stats, but I find Bing Ads to be more easily navigable. The stats are also relayed in a way that is easy to interpret with clear bar graphs, as noted by James Love at InfoTrust.
6: Better Customer Service
Almost any small business owner who has advertised on Google Adwords will have horror stories about the ‘terms and service’. With so many details, and so much vague wording, it is easy to unintentionally violate the rules set out by Google Adwords. When that happens, you get banned. Because Google has so many clients, it isn’t a big deal to them if they lose a customer, and because they have so many big name companies, it is actually better for them to eliminate the biggest clients’ competitors. This can be frustrating. Bing, on the other hand, has far clearer terms and services, and should you violate them, they are far more likely to take the time to educate their clients and help them improve their ads so that they work within the guidelines of their regulations.
7: It Allows For Exact Word Matches
At one time Google did have an ‘exact match’ option that actually was an exact match option. This meant that if you entered a key word, only users who entered that exact search word would see your ad. Google still offers ‘exact match’, but now they define this as “exact terms or close variations of exact terms”, meaning that words with similar spellings and different meanings might trigger your ad to show up, and if somebody accidentally clicks your ad, you’ll be paying money for somebody else’s spelling mistake. Variants can be helpful, but for users who want to target specific keywords, this can be a problem. Only Bing offers this option right now.
8: Better Interface with Social Networks
While there is room for improvement with how Bing Ads interfaces with social networks, Mark Irvine from Word Stream notes that Bing at least has a leg up on Google Adwords. While Google is intent on promoting its own social networking services, Bing has no issues using your standing with sites like Twitter to reinforce your credibility. Where Google Adwords places the number of your Google+ followers next to your ad (that’s if you have Google+), Bing Ads includes the number of your Twitter followers. This helps bolster you reputation and makes it more likely that users will click on your ad.
9: It’s More Innovative
I don’t mean to imply that Google isn’t innovative. After all, part of the reason Google has such a strangle hold on the market is precisely because it has been so innovative. Bing, however, is the little guy taking on Goliath, so it has to be more innovative. As a result, it has put together better stat tracking info, and offers more detailed control, as mentioned, but it is constantly coming up with new features that Google doesn’t have. It allows users to control their search demographics, be it for age, gender, or device, and allows you to include negative keywords so that your ad doesn’t show up when your keywords are paired with words not associated with your products. As Brian Jackson from itBusiness observes, Bing is constantly improving its services. These kinds of features, coupled with the constantly evolving stats that Bing offers, demonstrates the kind of forward thinking that tech users used to see in Google and are accustomed to seeing in Apple, putting Bing ahead of its competition in terms of innovation and giving it more unique features.
10: You Can Use PayPal
This is a simple one, and most people have payment options other than PayPal, but for a lot of internet users, PayPal is their exclusive go-to payment service when making transactions online. As Mahesh Mohan states, there aren’t too many Google products that accept PayPal. Bing, however, has no issue with PayPal, making it far more user friendly.
Google Adwords can be an extremely effective service and can generate a lot of money for you, but Bing Ads is certainly worthy of consideration. If you have the funds, it might be a good idea to run both and fine tune your campaigns using the detailed stats provided on Bing to put together a more effective campaign on Google, though some features on Bing will allow you to target more specific users. With its extra features, innovation, more affordable prices, and increasing market share, Bing Ads is something you should at the very least be keeping your eye on.
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