Google Ads vs. Bing Ads

Wondering whether Google Ads or Bing Ads is more suited for your business? We have a detailed comparison to help you decide in our detailed definitive guide comparing Google Ads to Bing Ads.

Photo of Danny Mahoney
Danny Mahoney

Businesses are increasing investments in online advertising. At the same time, new entrants are bombarded with one question - whether Google Ads or Bing Ads is better.

Before getting into the thick of things, Bing might not be familiar to all searchers on the internet. It is a search engine, like Google. But, Bing is powered by Microsoft and determined to give Google strict competition. To that end, it tries to revolutionise digital searches while providing competition to the current powerhouse.

Google Ads Vs Bing Ads

Bing has ambition, but where this search engine truly differentiates itself is in the PPC or pay per click ads segment.

A pay per click ad is basically how search engine marketing or SEM takes place. Advertisers pay for the number of clicks on each ad, and then companies calculate the cost per click.

Basically, the advertiser pays publishers each time a surfer clicks on an ad. In return, these ads are added to databases of the search engine. So, each time a user puts in a keyword that matches the content, they get to see these ads.

Google Ads remains extremely popular, but Bing Ads also has its own set of advantages. Curious about which among Google Ads vs Bing Ads will be better for you? That’s where we come in with all the details to help you make your choice.

Let us show you the full detailed comparison between Google and Bing Ads Networks.

How Are They Similar?

Google Ads and Bing Ads work on the same concept. They assign a cost per click which helps in getting quick conversions and achieving short-term goals. Within the SERP, both Google and Bing have similar appearances.

They display URLs beneath ad headlines and have meta descriptions underneath that. The overall placement of the title, headlines, and their meta descriptions are nearly the same. There aren’t many differences in length either.

These PPC ads look like search results in both cases, except for the small bubble at the side, declaring they are ads.

How Are They Different?

The difference between Bing and Google isn’t as crystal clear as you might have hoped. Google Ads has two different networks for advertisement purposes. They are the Search Network and Display Network. The former consists of text ads that appear in the SERPs. Meanwhile, the latter covers visual ads that appear on different websites all over the net.

On the other hand, Bing is owned by Microsoft, which also owns Yahoo and AOL. Thus, to take out a Bing ad means that it is displayed on all of these search engines.

Thus, searchers can come across your ads on Bing, Yahoo, and AOL, apart from previous partner sites.

Factors Of Comparison

There are some critical factors on which we will compare differences between Bing and Google ads. How these options fare will help you decide which one to choose.

1. Reach

Since all advertisers want to reach their audiences, it is a critical component of ad campaigns. If people don’t know about your company, they’re not likely to buy your products and services. Thus, teams might miss out on returns on money spent on ads.

This tends to affect the overall profitability of a company.

Google takes the lead here because their PPC ads capture a larger market share on the basis of searches.

Search Engine Market Share

Through their display network, you can reach a lot of extra users too. Bing PPC ads grab the edge in reaching a section of desktop users that Google can’t. However, Google dominates when it comes to overall reach.

2. Demography

Targeting the wrong people can break ad campaigns. Try using the targeting options provided by Bing and Google. While these are helpful, the existing demographics of both Bing and Google also play a major part.

A large section of Bing users are married, between the ages of thirty-five and fifty-four, and generally have a higher income. Comparatively, those using Google are younger.

Bing Demographic Data

Due to the massive user base of Google, it is harder to pinpoint other demographics. But if your target audience falls outside the parameters that Bing users mostly belong to, then Google ads are the way to go.

3. Proper Targeting

Ad targeting can also help to reach appropriate audiences successfully. In Google Ads, a campaign uses content and audience targeting. Content targeting offers options like placement, keywords, topics, and displaying expansion for searches.

Meanwhile, audience targeting includes affinity, demographics, in-market, similar audiences, custom intent, and remarketing. The difference between a Google ad and a Bing ad campaign is evident in the latter’s targeting options.

You get LinkedIn profiles, in-market, keywords, custom audiences, location, time of day and day of the week, gender, age, remarketing, and device. Overall even though Google Ads has more options for targeting, Bing offers some distinct advantages.

If you’re advertising to individuals or companies, your campaign can use LinkedIn profile targeting. This is especially helpful in account-based marketing.

4. Targeting Through Keywords

Search marketing is essential irrespective of whether you’re using Google Ads or Bing Ads. Thus, you have to understand what kind of keywords match the types searched on these advertising platforms.

For Google Ads, you can gain access to broad matches, phrase matches, broad match modifiers, exact matches, and negative keywords. Bing allows broad, phrase, and exact matches, along with negative keywords.

In terms of match options for keywords, there isn’t much difference between Google Ads and Bing Ads. But, there is a marked contrast when it comes to search volume.

Google dominates here, so if you’re using Bing, you’ll have access to smaller search volumes. This means, there are fewer users and lesser scopes of reaching target audiences.

5. Ad Copies

Several businesses start an ad campaign with text ads. Both Google and Bing have guidelines for these kinds of advertisements. Rules are usually related to the number of characters for the headlines, display URLs for landing pages, and descriptions.

Google ads have to follow up to 30 characters for headlines, up to 90 characters for the descriptive sections, and 15 characters for display URLs.

Bing allows the same for headlines and URLs but has an 80 character limit for descriptions. Thus, Google does seem to offer more flexibility when it comes to ad copies.

6. Costing

Before launching a campaign, it is necessary to calculate the costs. Generally, there is a lower cost for Bing Ads as compared to Google Ads. Of course, expenditure often determines the kind of returns you get.

Spending less on Bing Ads or Google Ads might lead to lower earnings. Then again, unqualified leads clicking on ads won’t result in new clients or sales.

Obviously, your campaign should be designed as per your budget. But, don’t make price the only factor. Check performances and returns to decide on whether you need a Bing Ads account or stand to get a better conversion rate with Google Ads.

7. Cost Per Click

While deciding ad budgets, go through the cost per click for both Google Ads and Bing Ads. When it comes to paid search advertising, CPC stands for how much money you pay when someone clicks on your ad.

This is compared to their engagement with the ad, and whether there are sales resulting from it.

Bing has a slightly lower CPC than Google. But the engagement is lower too. Thus, smaller ad campaigns might do better with Bing Ads, but there’ll be lesser engagement anyhow.

Once again, performance becomes as important as cost while planning such a campaign.

8. Click-Through-Rate

CTR or Click-Through-Rate basically calculates the percentage of how many users click on the ad vs how many of them see it.

Usually, Bing Ads has a higher CTR than Google Ads, but you still need to have compelling content so that users decide to check out what you’re selling.

9. Rate Of Conversion

You simply can’t ignore the rate of conversions for advertisements. It describes the percentage of users who complete the goal of ads, like buying the product. It is compared to the section of users who clicked on the ad but didn’t follow through with a purchase.

Google has a higher conversion rate, especially when you consider how many advertisers use it.

10. Restrictions On Advertisements

In the history of PPC, there have been changes in regulations. These have affected what advertisers can show. Google Ads has a lot more restrictions, as compared to Bing Ads.

The former doesn’t allow or imposes restrictive policies on alcohol, adult content, gambling, and games. It also strictly regulates copyrighted content, medicines and healthcare, anything political, trademarks, financial services, and legal content.

Bing, on the other hand, restricts hate speech, dating, political or religious content. The site also has policies against peer-to-peer sharing, violence, suffering, tax collection, sensitive advertisement, and user-generated content that isn’t regulated.

Though there are some overlaps, Google tends to be much stricter. They also don’t allow affiliate marketing for ads campaign on the search engine.

11. Kinds Of Ads

Google stays ahead of the curve by innovating new types of ads. They have call-only ads, which follows mobile device targeting. Users can click on phone numbers displayed in these digital marketing plans, and set up a direct call. Bing still has a long way to go to catch up.

12. Tools Available

Google also offers many tools to help improve advertisements. The Keyword Planner Tool is one such example. It makes advertising so much easier since you can look up the search volume, and research all kinds of keywords to forecast trends in the future.

There’s also an editor app that allows you to create ads faster and upload them. You can download and use it offline. Bing has a keyword planner as well, but it isn’t as advanced as Google’s.

13. Search Engine Market Share

Market share plays a huge role in determining how popular certain search engines are. The numbers show that Google reigns over the search engine market, having captured 91.38%, while Bing holds around 2.69%. While it still comes second, there is a significant gap.

Thus it’s no wonder advertisers prefer Google Ads to Bing Ads when it comes to online advertising.

Cons Of Google And Bing Ads

You should know that each search engine comes with its own set of disadvantages. Google witnesses high competition with keywords of high value.

This results in an increase in PPC. Users have to use specific keywords since broad words might attract unwanted searches and hamper advertising attempts. Again as Bing has a very loyal user base, using Google ads makes it impossible to reach them.

Avg. CPC by Industry

Image Source: Marketing Charts

On the other hand, Bing, too, has its downsides. Trillions of people use Google, who wouldn’t prefer Bing.

As its market share is significantly smaller, Bing Ads are not likely to reach international audiences, and the demography is much older too.

Special Benefits Of Bing

Despite the detailed comparison, you should be aware of certain special advantages advertisers enjoy when they use Bing.

1. Importing Google Ads Campaigns

Once you’ve created an account with Bing ads, you have the option to directly import your Google campaigns from Google AdWords.

Instead of creating everything from scratch, you can have your campaign up and running in no time.

2. Increase In Granular Control

Bing offers greater granular targeting at ad group levels.

While Google lets you set networks, languages, location, and even ad rotation, Bing Ads allows adjustments beyond the campaign level. Moreover, you can tailor Bing Ads for different timezones, which AdWords doesn’t allow.

3. Better Device Targeting

Bing has AdWords beaten when it comes to specific targeting. For example, here you can tailor ads based on device types and operating systems.

Advertisers even have the option to not display campaign ads on desktops if they’re meant for mobile phones.

4. Sitelink Extensions

Much like AdWords, Bing PPC gives a chance to advertisers to add information that’ll persuade users to click through.

Extra links on a network can consist of several items like demos and free trials. But, these ads are much larger than other examples on a SERP list.

5. Improved Transparency

This network allows greater transparency by disclosing details about search partners. So, advertisers know where traffic is coming from and how their ads are performing. Details on metrics, conversions, and impressions become easily available.

6. Better Engagement And Conversion

Bing takes users to post-click landing pages once they hit on the PPC ads.

This leads to a higher degree of conversion. The network can display ads that attract new clients each time.

7. Bing Ads Certification

Bing has its own certification program akin to AdWords certification. A training course is followed by an accreditation test. But, the badge helps land new clients.

There are some perks if you use Bing Ads with the badge. You’re recognised as an expert and placed in the membership directory for professionals.

So, Bing Ads vs Google Ads, What you should choose

After comparing Google ads vs Bing ads, it becomes clear that the best method is to leverage both. AdWords takes the cake with its digital advertisement, but Bing complements PPC strategies excellently and fills gaps in online presence.

Avg. CPC by Industry

Image Source: Get Community

If Bing Ads accompany AdWords, you can reach new territories. Though Google might have higher volume, Bing has lower costs per click, less competition, and better positioning. Choose as per your requirements, and do reach out if there are any queries.

Until then, goodbye.

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