- Bing Ads Editor - This looks and functions like a zombie version of AdWords desktop editor. However, once you get the hang of it, the interface is equally easy to use and very similar to AdWords Editor. I really enjoy that I can perform keyword research right from the interface and that it was so easy to initially import Google AdWords Campaigns directly into the editor without needing to upload them. I think Microsoft really took some time putting this together and it works as it should. Making bulk changes is easy, and I found it intuitive.
- Microsoft Ad Intelligence – My favorite part of the Bing ecosystem. I found many of the features to be extremely useful for keyword research such as:
- Webpage keywords – This feature allows you to type in a keyword and it will spit out a list of suggestions. This was extremely useful, especially during ninja-like PPC research on competitors. This is no replacement for Keyword spy, but it helped me discover some new keywords from both my sites and my competitors.
- Searches with your keyword - This feature allows you to input a keyword and it will give you a list of searches that contain your keyword. I liked how this feature expanded keywords I already had. The rate of words I would use is not particularly high (maybe 2 useful ones for every 20 searched), but it did provide me with keywords to go after that I had not found elsewhere.
- Keyword performance – This feature looks at historical data from other advertisers and uses it to predict clicks, impressions, click through rates, average bid, and more. Solid at predicting the cost I will incur and click through rate that I will enjoy. This is more robust than adWords and I found it to be slightly more accurate.
- The quality of the searchers - Microsoft’s searchers are motivated to buy. ROI on all my campaigns, including ones that exactly mirror AdWords have a higher ROI. I am not sure exactly why this is, but I have theories. Some of my theories are: there is less competition in the adCenter system, searchers with Bing are older and have more money, or that Bill Gates himself is buying all the products in an effort to keep the ROI high on Microsoft adCenter.
- Support - Not the customer service respondents who work at Bing, but actually trying to find tutorials, overviews, or papers. For example, Microsoft linking to dead support pages, outdated information, and overviews that are more sales than information. Additionally I could not find a good video tutorial. Try it and you will see. The best Microsoft Ad Intelligence tutorial I could find was about two minutes long. There is a learning center, but you can expect a bunch of videos that look like poorly put together power points which are short on information. This really needs to be addressed if they want advertisers to learn and evangelicalize their system.
- Traffic - I am not entirely blaming Microsoft for this because it was expected. However, with claims of over 25% of all searches performed I expected more impressions and searches. They are surprisingly low on impressions and when I called an adCenter rep they basically said, “We’re not Google!”
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