Microsoft adCenter versus Google AdWords
Pay per Click Advertising (PPC) is massive business online which is which is why Microsoft and Google are both heavily involved. They offer dedicated PPC Advertising Services for those wanting to boost their traffic and revenue.
Microsoft adCenter and Google Adwords have similar business models and of course both make their own claims regarding popularity and success. Whether you choose to advertise on Bing, Google or both, you’ll reach thousands of potential customers. Essentially, you need to look at the similarities and differences between the two services to decide which is more likely to suit your business.
Microsoft adCenter was created when Microsoft took over Yahoo’s search results and PPC ad serving. This means that Microsoft adCenter has a considerable amount of ad share, which is important for them considering how established and popular Google AdWords is within the market.
Overall, Microsoft adCenter is an effective tool and has been used by the likes of Intel to drive business (you can see more case studies at http://advertising.microsoft.com/search-advertising-case-studies). These are good credentials, but some say that Microsoft adCenter still lags behind Google AdWords in terms of its tools, customisation and functionality. Specifically the fact you are restricted in terms of the formats you can promote your ads in: just text or mobile formats are available at the moment.
In contrast Google AdWords has a much more flexible range of formats and functions. Your PPC ad can come in text, mobile, video, or photographic formats, giving your ad better chance of being clicked on and thus driving traffic to your site.
However, Microsoft adCenter wins hands down when it comes to targeting. Their targeting feature lets you use specific data – say, where your users are located or even what days of the week they search on – to target set groups of people. This is excellent news in terms of marketing as the result is a highly customised PPC campaign that may lead to a high ROI as you will be more likely to appear on searches that will generate hard, profitable leads.
There is also one feature that Microsoft adCenter boasts that Google AdWords doesn’t which is its parameter system. Microsoft adCenter allows you to have multiple variables that show up in ad text for each keyword. This means that you can really custom build your ads per individual keyword – again, a very targeted approach, whereas Google only offer a basic keyword insertion option. You can choose the casing, but it would be more useful to choose the keywords as well.
Google AdWords is the Market leading product and therefore tends to be more popular with PPC advertisers. Altogether it offers a more interactive experience and of course the chance to appear on the all-important Google search page. You can also use it in conjunction with Google’s other apps, such as Google Places and Google Analytics, both in order to monitor its results and enhance its effectiveness.
The best way to see which one will work for you is to test them both out. Why not have a month on Google AdWords and a month on Microsoft adCenter and compare the results? Use the same keywords and ad copy so that you have a true comparison test and measure your CTR and ROI to evaluate the results.