Google Ads vs Microsoft Ads

Google Ads vs Microsoft Ads

Google Ads vs Microsoft (Bing ) Ads: Which is Best?

Pay per click advertising, or PPC, is one of the best ways for new businesses, small businesses, and any other organisation facing fierce digital competition, to get their brand, their product, or their service in front of the right eyes, at the right time. 

When getting started with a PPC campaign, it’s fair to say that most businesses will automatically head over to Google, signing up for a Google Ads account that can help them research relevant keywords, develop an ad, select match type, adjust bidding, and get to work. However, Google is certainly not the only PPC channel out there, and another great contender to consider right now is Microsoft Ads.

But which is better? Which Ad network is best for you and your business?

Google & Microsoft: Two Halves of the Same Coin

The most important thing to remember here is that Google Ads and Microsoft Ads both ultimately help you to achieve the same thing. We’re not comparing apples and oranges here; we’re comparing oranges and oranges. So whatever network you choose to use, if you have a strong PPC strategy in place, you should see results. 

There are, of course, many similarities between Google Ads and Microsoft Ads. Both are discovery platforms. Both are awareness platforms. They both use bidding amount and clickthrough rate to determine how often an ad is displayed to users. Both can drive more traffic to your site, leaving you in a prime position to delight. 

However, there are also a number of differences between the two. Below, we take a closer look at some of the stand out features and highlights of each PPC channel.

Google Ads

Google Ads was originally launched in 2000 under the name ‘Google Adwords’, before the Google Ads as we know it today was formed in 2018. It is undoubtedly the go-to option for PPC advertising, and it’s easy to see why businesses love it. 

  • Reach

The most obvious highlight of Google Ads is that Google is the biggest search engine on the planet, and that doesn’t look set to change any time soon. Google’s display network reaches 90% of internet users, so for businesses looking to boost awareness amongst more potential leads, Google wins. 

  • Data

Ad networks use real time browsing, searching, shopping, and clickthrough behaviours to shape keyword research, and there’s no better data set than Google’s. As the world’s leading search engine, Google has access to data Microsoft can only dream of, and this extensive data can really help engage. 

  • Discretion

PPC ads displayed through the Google network are more discreet than Microsoft’s, making paid results almost indistinguishable from organic results. At a time when buyers don’t want to be sold to – when audiences have major ad fatigue – Google’s ability to disguise sponsored results can be a big help. 

Microsoft Ads

Microsoft Ads has been through quite a few name changes over the years, starting life as MSN adCenter and then becoming Microsoft adCenter before the more recognisable Bing Ads. In 2019 Bing Ads was retired in favour of Microsoft Ads. 

  • Demographics

One reason to love Microsoft Ads is because it enables them to reach demographics that are difficult to engage with through Google. For example, the average Bing user is aged between 45-54 – a little older than Google’s younger demographic – so it’s good for connecting with specific niches. 

  • Conversion

While Microsoft Ads is a discovery and awareness platform like Google, unlike Google it’s also a conversion platform. A true highlight is Microsoft’s integrated action extensions, that allow users to order, reserve, download, and more directly through the ad. Microsoft says it boosts conversions by 20%.

  • Targeting

Ad targeting is good with both networks. However, Microsoft gained a slight edge when it introduced its LinkedIn profile targeting, allowing businesses to target  not only by search term, but company and job type, too. When businesses need to do more with less, improved targeting is only a good thing. 

Google or Microsoft?

Honestly, there’s no right or wrong answer. When making your decision, there are a few important questions to ask yourself to help determine which is right for you:

1. Who’s my audience? Microsoft users are, on average, slightly older

2. What reach do I need? Google ads typically reach more users

3. What’s my budget? Microsoft Ads may be a more budget-friendly option

4. What are my keywords? Google’s extensive data can help identify top terms

As it’s clear to see, there are advantages to both. What we will say is that, if you’re just getting started, Google Ads tends to be more of an all-rounder, while Microsoft Ads is something you may wish to look into later due to its advanced features. 

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