Octiv Digital
Display & Remarketing Ads Management

Are Microsoft Ads Worth It?

by | Last updated Dec 19, 2023

The significance of online advertising for businesses in today’s ever-changing digital landscape cannot be overstated. Smart businesses are always looking for effective platforms to post their advertisements, aiming to reach a larger audience and drive increased sales. Google Ads and Microsoft Ads dominate the world of online advertising for search based ads. Formerly known as Google AdWords, Google Ads has long been the undisputed leader and the go-to choice for many seeking online visibility.

However, Microsoft Ads, once known as Bing Ads, has quietly carved out a niche for itself, emerging as a potent alternative for marketers and advertisers. This rise prompts a question: In the vast sea of online advertising, where every penny is crucial and visibility is paramount, is investing in Microsoft Ads truly worthwhile? Such a question merits a closer examination of what Microsoft’s platform offers in this intensely competitive digital era.

Google Ads vs. Microsoft Ads: The Basics

When you think of online advertising, Google might be the first name that comes to mind. With its expansive reach, Google Ads rule the digital advertising space. However, it’s worth noting that Microsoft Ads, which serves Bing, Yahoo, and AOL, offers a refreshing alternative. Imagine two supermarkets: Google is the gigantic one that everyone frequents, while Microsoft is the smaller, less crowded one with some unique products on offer.

Cost Considerations: A Budget-Friendly Alternative?

One of the often overlooked perks of venturing into the Microsoft ad ecosystem is its affordability. The lower competition on Bing means advertisers often pay less per click. Imagine paying less for a product in a smaller supermarket simply because there’s less demand for it. If you’re a business on a budget or just starting out, this is like finding a hidden gem in the advertising world. You’ll see traffic and discover more about your audience, but you can do so without breaking the bank.

Competition Levels: The Big Fish in a Smaller Pond

Google Ads can feel like a bustling marketplace with countless sellers shouting for attention. This fierce rivalry can sometimes drown out smaller voices. Conversely, Microsoft Ads offers a more serene space. Fewer advertisers mean not only lesser costs but also a golden opportunity for businesses to shine. It’s like being a talented singer performing in a cozy cafe instead of a massive stadium—you’re bound to be noticed more.

Audience Demographics: Quality Over Quantity

Yes, Google’s user base is colossal, but bigger isn’t always better. Microsoft Ads offers a unique cocktail of users. If your business thrives on an older, more affluent demographic, primarily based in the US, then Microsoft might be your go-to. Think of it this way – would you rather shout in a crowded room or converse with a select group genuinely interested in what you’re saying?

Ad Integration & Features: Tailoring Your Approach

While both platforms offer robust features, Microsoft Ads holds some unique cards, especially for those targeting businesses. Given Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn, advertisers get a nifty feature: LinkedIn profile targeting. It’s like having a special magnifying glass to closely examine and engage your B2B audience. Plus, the granular control at the ad group level? That’s like having an extra set of precision tools in your advertising toolkit.

Switching Lanes Effortlessly

If you’ve ever moved houses, you know the hassle of packing and setting up all over again. But with Microsoft Ads, moving from Google Ads feels less like a cumbersome shift and more like sliding smoothly into a new lane. The platform’s import feature is a godsend, making sure businesses don’t need to start from scratch. It’s the convenience of having a moving company do the heavy lifting for you.

So, Are Microsoft Ads Worth It?

The answer, as with many things in digital marketing, is that it depends.

For businesses with tight budgets looking to get the most out of their advertising spend, the lower competition and cost of Microsoft Ads make it an enticing option. If your target demographic aligns more closely with Bing’s user base or if you’re in the B2B sector and can leverage the LinkedIn integration, Microsoft Ads might just offer the edge you need.

However, it’s essential to remember that while costs might be lower, the reach is also limited when compared to Google. For businesses looking for sheer volume and visibility, Google Ads might still be the better choice. You just need to make sure you have the budget to be competitive.

Ultimately, the best strategy might not be an “either-or” decision. Diversifying your ad spend across both platforms can help maximize reach and ROAS. By leveraging the strengths of both Google and Microsoft Ads, advertisers can enjoy the best of both worlds.

About the Author

Jeff Romero

Founder of Octiv Digital, University of Utah alumni, drummer and digital marketer for local businesses, e-commerce organizations and more. I write on the Octiv Digital blog about SEO, paid search, web development and analytics.


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