Maximizing Lead Gen: Using Google Ads and Bing Ads Simultaneously
Service based businesses are competitive – especially when it comes to paid search
Maximizing lead generation requires going beyond just Google Ads, and adding additional methods of lead generation including Bing Ads is highly recommended in the uber-competitive landscape in paid search.
Bing Ads you say? Yep. Now known as Microsoft Ads, this channel should not be ignored, as we will show below. First, a bit of background on Bing paid search…
Bing as a search engine turned ten years old in June of 2019, and was introduced by name as a paid search platform in 2012 (although had various names prior to that.) When advertising with Bing, your ads can also be seen on Yahoo as well. And let’s also not forget that not only does Microsoft own Bing, they also own LinkedIn which should create some great B2B advertising opportunities in the very near future (once they get their act together.)
That being said, Bing/Yahoo still accounts for less than five percent of the U.S. search market share as of 2018. So why even waste time with <5% of the search market? As we’ll outline below, there are many great reasons.
Leave No Rock Unturned
Located in one of the largest 10 cities in the United States, a major renovation/home service-based business was looking to maximize their existing budget within Google Ads while also looking for additional lead sources to complement their already well performing Google Ads campaigns. Yes, there are ways to expand and increase search impression share within your Google campaign (increase locations, add keywords, add services, run 24 hours a day, to name a few) but eventually you can run out of options when the search impression share is inching closer to 100%, and the aforementioned options have been exercised.
Knowing that they needed to avoid overlap and find other sources that would not compete with Google Ads, they were skeptical, but we (10Nine Marketing) were confident that solutions existed without having to turn to less desirable sources such as print mail, buying email lists, Facebook Ads, Home Advisor, or Thumbtack, to name a few.
Leveraging a (much) Lesser Used Search Engine
After months of research and competitor analysis, the decision was made to leverage Bing Ads to capitalize on searchers that use Bing and Yahoo. While these may be lesser used search engines, audiences tend to be older which matched their preferred client base – homeowners in need of updates and replacement products.
The difference was the time put in to analyze potential results, leverage the existing success 10Nine Marketing had managing their Google Ads campaigns and understanding that despite less potential volume, the lack of competition presented a great opportunity to add lead volume.
Results began almost immediately and continued strongly. With click through rates of 6.88% outpacing Google and a conversion rate of 8.84%, not only were leads consistent using the Bing Ads platform, but the cost per lead was 27.5% lower compared to Google over the same periods. While volume was not substantial compared to Google Ads, this was expected as Bing and Yahoo are used far less as search engines (as noted above.)
Results were aided by an effectively built and managed campaign and high performing landing pages. Over the course of the first month, the Bing Ads platform helped to produce an increase of 34% lead volume without any sacrifice of their existing lead production in Google Ads.
Make no mistake here, this is a huge win when the search engine (Bing) with less than 5% of the market share increases the overall lead volume by 34%.
Due to initial successes, additional campaigns were added for other product types, creating similar results and enabling the potential to substantially grow the company’s revenue through more production.
5/10/19 – 6/23/19 – Identical Campaigns
|Google Ads||Bing Ads|
|Cost per Conversion||$107.92||$78.19|
1. Click Through Rates and Conversion Rates were higher using Bing than Google Ads – Bing has less competition than Google Ads with fewer companies leveraging this advertising platform. As a result, utilizing a well managed, professionally built campaign can create significant opportunities even at lower volume. Bing can be an amazing supplement to Google Ads, or it can even be used for newcomers to the paid search scene who want to dip their toes in the pool first.
With an array of effective keywords, companies can cover search terms not used by many competitors, resulting in fewer competitor ads and lower click costs. This helps to improve CTR with clicks at a lower cost per click. When combining this with strong landing pages, the result was a cost per lead that was 27.5% lower than Google Ads over the same time period!
2. Desktop dominated click volume but mobile offers lower click cost opportunities – as expected, the majority of clicks (62%) took place on desktops. Bing is most widely used on Windows laptops and desktops while mobile usage is limited to lesser used Windows phones such as the Windows 8 phone and also for those that have elected to default their phone browser to Bing. Mobile clicks, however, came at a cost 57% less than desktop clicks. This represents an awesome opportunity for a company trying to find lower cost advertising to maximize smaller budgets or to offset expensive search terms with high click costs.
3. Beware of broad keywords – the same broad keywords used on Bing did not yield near the results as the same terms used on the Google Ad platform. Bing is known to lack the same level of intelligence and search term match logic that Google Ads has and the evidence was clear when comparing the two campaigns. Note: Be very careful when using straight broad, or even broad match modified keywords (BMM) in Bing.
In the end, the most effective approach was to turn off all straight broad match keywords and rely solely on broad match modified, phrase match, and exact match keywords. Once broad match keywords were paused, campaign results skyrocketed with click through rates increasing 68% and conversion rates increasing an astounding 397%. Bing Ads was relying on broad match terms over other match types and failing to accurately match search terms to the best keywords. This is the known danger when not managing a Bing Ads account properly – so make sure you are treading very lightly with broad keywords, while being diligent in checking your search term reports and adding negative keywords. You have been warned!
4. Landing pages matter – while this is not specific to Bing Ads, landing pages matter. Keywords, their bids, ads and search terms are all critical components of a Google Ads or Bing Ads account; however, without a strong, high performing landing page or landing page design, even the best optimized accounts can struggle or fail to perform entirely.
When selecting a company to help manage your Google Ads or Bing Ads accounts, ask about their approach to landing pages. 10Nine Marketing develops all of our clients’ landing pages and our results have been outstanding. Whether it be new accounts or taking over the management of existing accounts, our landing pages have outperformed all expectations. Learn more in our case study related to landing pages.
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