Thoughts, SEO

Advantages of Microsoft Advertising: A Comprehensive Guide


We like Microsoft Advertising. It has always been the smaller, little brother to Google Ads and therefore (especially in Ireland), often gets left behind. However, it can prove to be an impressive addition to your performance marketing tool kit.

Microsoft Advertising, formerly known as Bing Ads, is Microsoft’s online advertising platform that provides businesses with the tools to reach a global audience across the Microsoft network. This article explores the unique benefits of Microsoft Advertising and how it compares to other digital marketing platforms like Google Ads.


Introduction to Microsoft Advertising

Microsoft Advertising is a robust pay-per-click (PPC) advertising system that enables businesses to create ad campaigns on Microsoft’s network, which includes Bing, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo, AOL, and other partner websites. While often compared and looked-over in favor of Google Ads, it offers unique advantages that can unlock new opportunities for advertisers.


Expanding Your Reach with Microsoft Advertising


Accessing a New Audience

As we have mentioned, Microsoft Advertising gives you access to the Microsoft Search Network, which includes Bing, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo, AOL, and other search engines. This network boasts billions of monthly searches and hundreds of millions of unique users worldwide. By leveraging Microsoft Ads, you can tap into this potential market and expose your brand to a new audience segment.


The Power of Microsoft Search Network

The Microsoft Search Network may not be as expansive as Google’s, but it still commands a substantial audience. It provides a brand-safe environment for your ads, ensuring that your messaging reaches users in trusted online spaces.

While not as big as Google’s network, we have seen a sizable share within certain sectors particularly tech and B2B, due to its integration with Windows.


Lower Competition and Cost-Effectiveness

Microsoft Advertising typically faces less competition compared to Google Ads. With fewer businesses utilising the platform, there’s less competition for ad space, potentially leading to a lower cost-per-click (CPC).

The fact that you can buy traffic at a lower cost per click often gives you a better return on your investment. For this reason, there is a case for a Microsoft Advertising-First forecasting and budgeting model for your performance strategy. This is especially true if you are advertising outside of Ireland.


The Unique Benefits of Microsoft Advertising


LinkedIn Profile Targeting

Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn in 2016 opened new advertising possibilities. With LinkedIn profile targeting, advertisers can target potential customers based on their LinkedIn profile information, including their company, industry, or job title.

This makes Microsoft Advertising great for any B2B campaigns where you might want to bid up on people in different industries. This coupled with the fact that Bing is the default search engine on the Windows operating system and in general users are more likely to use this feature at work, makes it a winner.


Microsoft Audience Network

The Microsoft Audience Network is an advertising network that allows you to reach a plethora of websites, apps and other digital platforms with text, display and video ads. Ads placed on this network can be targeted based on a range of criteria, including demographics, interests, and behaviours.

The system will automatically opt your paid search campaigns into the audience network. Microsoft allows you to monitor the URLs that are being sent to, so it is vital to exclude anything that is not driving performance.


Advertising on Xandr

Microsoft’s acquisition of Xandr in 2022 broadened its advertising reach further. Xandr offers programmatic advertising solutions for display, native advertising, video, and connected TV, thereby significantly expanding Microsoft’s reach.


User-friendly Campaign Management

Microsoft Advertising provides a user-friendly interface for managing your campaigns. If you’re familiar with Google Ads, you’ll find similarities in terms of usability and layout. The platform offers features for creating and controlling your campaigns, bids, and targeting options effortlessly.Microsoft Advertising Editor

Just like Google Ads, Microsoft Ads also has an Editor. This free tool offers many features, such as offline and bulk campaign creation and editing.


Smart Campaigns and Expert Mode

Microsoft Advertising offers the option to create smart campaigns that leverage Microsoft’s AI capabilities to generate and manage ads based on your website’s content.


Importing Campaigns from Google Ads

Microsoft Advertising allows for a seamless import of campaigns from Google Ads. This feature eliminates the need to set up campaigns from scratch, saving you time and effort.


Targeting Different Time Zones

Microsoft Advertising offers the flexibility to target different time zones with your ads. This feature is particularly useful when targeting large countries with multiple time zones or when running campaigns across different countries simultaneously.


Advertising Types in Microsoft Ads

Microsoft Advertising supports various types of ads, such as responsive search ads, dynamic search ads, product ads, Microsoft Audience Ads, App install ads, Vertical ads, and Multimedia ads.


Microsoft Advertising Policy

The Microsoft Advertising ad policy is similar to that of Google. However, it’s essential to monitor the rejections within your Microsoft Advertising account as ad texts or products can be rejected in Microsoft Ads while they are still valid in Google.


Microsoft Advertising Maturity Model

For advertisers who want to get the most out of Microsoft Advertising, the Microsoft Advertising Maturity Model provides a roadmap to improve accounts step by step, from basic settings to advanced strategies.



Microsoft is brilliant if you want to get profitable traffic. Simply put the CPCs are cheaper and in general the search traffic converts at the same (or better) rate than Google. This means that in a general sense, you can drive leads at a better ROAS. The main issue that we see is generally around scale. This is especially true for the Irish market where Google has a near monopoly on the search market. As we mentioned earlier, there is a solid argument for a Microsoft advertising-first strategy in terms of budgeting and forecasting.


Please note: All information in this article is correct to the best of our knowledge. Make sure that you consult a professional (cough cough) when making a decision on your performance marketing.

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