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7th September 2016
By Jamie

We get it. Google AdWords is where the PPC volume is at, so you spend your time crafting and perfecting your account, whilst your Bing Ads account doesn’t get the level of attention it quite deserves…or maybe you haven’t even started a Bing Ads account.

Yet, there are many reasons why running on Bing Ads is a good idea. Bing now commands 1 in 5 searches in the UK, and 15% of the Bing audience is unique to Bing. Bing also traditionally has a larger proportion of older demographics, and average CPCs across all verticals in Europe are 30% cheaper than Google.

Handily, Bing have made it easy to directly import your Google AdWords campaigns into Bing Ads. Sounds great right? It is, but the import isn’t perfect. Naturally, discrepancies between the way the two systems work means that there are some things to watch out for when importing.

Here are the top 5 things to watch out for:

Check your location targeting

AdWords and Bing Ads target locations differently. If you’re using radius targets or co-ordinates in Google, you should be fine when importing into Bing.

If you’re using town, city or county names however, check your campaigns’ location settings. Bing Ads can’t always handle the same locations as AdWords, so your campaign might end up targeting the wrong location, or a far larger location than you intended.

Using shared budgets in AdWords? Check your Bing budgets carefully

If you used shared budgets in AdWords (multiple campaigns sharing one pot of daily budget), these will transfer into duplicated individual budgets in Bing Ads. For example, if you have 10 campaigns sharing a £200 daily budget in AdWords, this will translate to 10 campaigns each with a daily budget of £200 in Bing Ads = potentially 10x budget spent = not a happy client!

Make sure you split up the budgets for separate campaigns once you’ve imported.

Review search network settings in Bing Ads

This means to check whether your Bing campaigns have been opted-in to search partners. Sometimes if your AdWords campaign is Google Search only, this can be imported to Bing Ads with search partners enabled.

If you’ve chosen to exclude search partners in AdWords, it’s likely you want to exclude them in Bing Ads. However, Bing Ads does give you the opportunity to exclude individual poor-performing search partners, whereas with AdWords it is all or nothing. Therefore, it could be worth testing search partners with Bing Ads, and frequently reviewing the performance to exclude any poor performers, leaving the good ones to continue running.

Does your account span multiple time zones?

If so, be aware that if you’re using time of day bid adjustments, Bing Ads works on the time zone of the person searching, whereas AdWords uses the time zone set by the advertiser.

If you’re only wanting to show your ads during 9am – 6pm in the country where you operate, but you advertise internationally, Bing Ads will allow users to see your ads 9am – 6pm in their own time zone, rather than just in your own.

Do you use broad match negatives in AdWords?

If you use broad match negatives in your AdWords account, Bing Ads automatically converts these to phrase match, which are a little more restrictive. You may need to add additional phrase match negatives to Bing Ads to block search queries which your broad match negatives were handling in AdWords.

Keep an eye on your Bing Ads search query reports in the first few weeks after importing, to see if there are further negatives that you need to add.

The final word…

These are the main things to be aware of when importing your AdWords campaigns into Bing Ads. You may also like to know that Bing Ads offers demographic targeting within search, which AdWords currently doesn’t offer, so you may like to test overlaying demographics to hone your search targeting.

Bing Ads is also currently in the process of following AdWords with use of upgraded URLs (final URL + tracking parameters) and Expanded Text Ads. In the short term there may be some difficulty in importing these features from Google, but there should be parity fairly soon.

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