Step by Step Guide: Bing Advertising

Many online advertisers are familiar with using Google Ads, but an often overlooked alternative that is worth checking out is Bing. Let’s look at how you can set up ads on Bing’s ad network and some of the important points you need to be aware of in order to get the best out of your ad campaign.

The general process of getting set-up to broadcast ads on Bing is outlined below.

  1. Firstly, sign up to use the Bing Ads service through the Bing Ads login page. The link for this page can be found here.
  2. As expected with any sign up process, you would be required to input a username and to pick a password.
  3. Go through the rest of the sign up form where you will be required to furnish more personal information.
  4. After this stage is complete, you can start thinking about the ad campaigns that you would like to create (the process is outlined below). Before you can actually start to run ads however, you would have to update your billing information on the site. Some of the payment options include PayPal, check/bank transfer and credit cards.

Let’s look at how you can actually set up a campaign in greater detail.

  1. Pick 5 to 10 keywords that you would like to bid on.
  2. Create 1 ad per keyword that you intend to bid on. Do not use the same generic ad for all your keywords! This is the easy way out, but it is also less effective in terms of getting conversion and good returns on your investment. Generally speaking, the more specifically you define your ad, the higher the expected click-through rate will be.
  3. The first line in the ad is the headline. You should include your bid keyword in this line.
  4. The rest of the ad is your ad copy. You could look for examples on the internet to get a better idea of what sells and what does not.
  5. You can then select the URL destination of the ad. This would ideally be the page where the customer gets exactly what the headline and ad copy promised to deliver. For example, if the headline was talking about cheap skateboards, the ad destination should link the viewer directly to a collection of cheap skateboards and not a generic homepage.

Common Mistakes to avoid

  1. Pay close attention to campaign settings! Ensure that mobile settings are set up correctly. If your site is not responsive and mobile ready, you would probably want to disable your ads showing on mobile devices.
  2. Control your ad schedules. If you target audience consists mostly of working adults in a specific city, you would not want your ads to show during the hours where most of your target audience is asleep would you?
  3. Not applying ad extensions is a mistake that many new advertisers on the network make. Some might not understand how to use them or they might perceive this feature to be a gimmick. However, ad extensions are an option that must be considered seriously, as these allow you to add more links to your site. Explore the settings to better understand how this feature can affect the way your ads appear.

As with any online ad campaign, the advertiser would have to test and review the performance of ads until they result in decent (profitable) conversion rates. This is usually the hardest part of setting any ad campaign up and rarely does anyone get it running optimally the first time round. So be prepared to monitor activity and conversions for a few days (or weeks) then start tweaking ads as necessary.

It would undoubtedly be helpful to allow auto-tagging of ads in order to track ad performance on analytics platforms like Google Analytics. This is beyond the scope of this article, but many guides can be found online on this subject.

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