Advertising on Bing vs. Google is a dilemma many marketers struggle with.
Building a solid marketing strategy means considering the pros and cons of each search engine, based on your geographical location and the type of product or services you’re advertising.
Each service comes with different marketing tools and campaign options for advertisers, yet Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is what lays the foundation. PPC is the primary model for digital advertising on the internet when looking to get your search result above organic content and ahead of competitors. In effect, PPC advertising is the cheat sheet that moves you up to first place in the race for customer attention.
Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing is where advertisers only pay the publisher for each time an advert is clicked. PPC is an internet advertising model used to drive traffic to the desired web page. The model is most associated with first-tier search engines and paid advertising such as Bing Ads and Google’s AdWords.
With the above in mind, we’ve outlined a comprehensive guide to running PPC campaigns, highlighting the key differences to consider between Microsoft vs Google Ads.
Avoid common mistakes and learn how to optimize your campaigns with our PPC checklist.
Bing Ads vs. Google Ads: The best of both worlds
First, let us start by saying that if you have the budget, we highly recommend testing both Bing Ads and Google Ads, previously known as Google AdWords. Especially if you’re a beginner in online advertising, trialin This way, you’ll see what sticks (or generates clicks) and what doesn’t.
When starting out with PPC ads, testing shows you how to allocate budget efficiently. As well as indicating the traffic you might receive from each in a larger campaign, you will be able to see the quality of that traffic, relative to the number of qualified leads it generates.
Your Conversion Rate is the percentage of visitors to your website who then take a desired action. The rate is calculated from the number of conversions divided by the number of visitors.
But everyone uses Google, right?
On the one hand, Google has cornered the market share and is responsible for over 85% of search engine traffic, globally. In comparison, Bing, despite being the next most-used search engine, only receives around 7% of this global traffic.
One thing to remember is that while Google might have bigger name recognition, Bing has the quieter power of tech conglomerate Microsoft behind it, meaning your ad will also show up in AOW and Yahoo searches. You might also want to consider the rising popularity of alternative search engines like DuckDuckGo, whose user-centric stance on internet privacy has even had some declaring a post-Google future.
Depending on where you are in the world will also influence what click-through rate (CTR) you can expect from targeting Bing Ads vs. Google Ads. While a US consumer might not be used to doing a Yahoo search, elsewhere in Mexico and Japan, for example, someone making that choice is far more likely.
Is Bing Ads worth it?
If this is a winner-takes-all scenario, market share, CTR and subsequent return on investment (ROI) are all things you need to consider when deciding on Bing Ads vs. Google Ads.
So, what questions do you need to ask yourself when weighing up whether Bing trumps Google in your quest for conversions?
Fortunately, we’ve outlined the key areas of concern below:
Does Bing Ads have a better CTR than Google Ads?
If you’re wondering whether Bing Ads are worth it, it’s worthwhile to remember so are a lot of other people. As a result, hesitancy to run a Bing Ads campaign means that competition for clicks is less fierce than in a potentially oversaturated Google Adwords market. CTR on Bing, therefore, can actually have a higher performance than on Google. The average CTR for Bing is 2.83%, but only 1.91% on Google Ads. So, while Google excels on reach, Bing can make an impact where it counts.
Is Bing Ads cheaper than AdWords?
Following on from the above, this could mean greater value for money and a higher ROI on Bing. One report suggested that each click cost on average only $7.99 on Bing Ads, a significant amount less than the $20.08 average CPC (cost per click) with Google Adwords. A lower CPC means the use of budget is reduced, and advertisers will see a better ROI on their campaigns.
What are the user demographics when comparing Bing to Google?
Comparing audiences can also help you decide between advertising on Bing vs. Google. Bing reportedly has an older audience, with 40% aged from 35 to 54, and almost half of users having a household income of $75,000 or more. Bing also allows for a 71 character text description, in contrast to Google’s 35 character limit, so ads can contain more information to encourage the user to click through. An ability to provide more details is just one reason Bing ads might appeal to an older, educated audience.
By now, you’ll have seen the value of running Google Ads and Bing Ads in complimentary campaigns, but if you’re still set on choosing one, here are a few last things to consider:
- Negative Keywords: Unlike Bing, Google Adwords allows advertisers to specify negative keywords that won’t trigger their ads. For example, if someone searches if you’re selling boutique garden furniture and someone searches ‘free garden furniture’, this is probably not the consumer you want to be reaching.
- Targeting: Bing provides an increased ability to target ads based on user demographics compared to Adwords; this can be great for advertisers trying to reach a specific niche audience.
- Integrated platforms: While both Bing and Google provide a running platform for advertisers, you can run import campaigns directly from Google Ads into Microsoft Advertising – but not vice versa.
New to digital advertising? Check out our Ultimate Guide to deep dive into the best online ads strategies.