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  • Conor Mc Niffe

Choosing between Google and Microsoft for Search Advertising

When it comes to search advertising, two major players dominate the market: Google and Microsoft Advertising (formerly Bing Ads). As advertisers, it can be challenging to decide which platform is the best fit for your advertising goals and budget. In this blog post, we'll compare Google and Microsoft Advertising and provide insights to help you make an informed decision.




Reach and Market Share

Google is undoubtedly the search engine giant, holding the majority of the market share with its search engine processing billions of queries every day. This wide reach means your ads have the potential to reach a massive audience. On the other hand, Microsoft Advertising has a smaller market share but still caters to a substantial number of users. In Canada, Google owns approximately 90% of the Search market, with Microsoft holding 7% and smaller search engines making up the rest. However, keep in mind both Search platforms are cost-per-click models, i.e. you only pay when someone clicks on your ad. If your target audience aligns more closely with Bing's user demographics, Microsoft Advertising may provide a valuable opportunity to capture their attention auxilliary to Google.


Advertising Tools and Features

Both Google and Microsoft Advertising offer a range of powerful tools and features to optimize your search advertising campaigns. Google Ads boasts a comprehensive suite of tools, including keyword research, ad extensions, remarketing, and robust analytics and recommendations. Microsoft Advertising provides similar features, allowing you to create effective campaigns, target specific demographics, and track campaign performance. It's worth noting that while Google Ads offers a wider range of features, Microsoft Advertising has a similar user interface and campaign strategies can be easily shared from one platform to another, reducing any necessity for duplication of work.


Cost and Competition

One significant factor to consider when choosing between Google and Microsoft Advertising is cost and competition. Google Ads tends to have higher costs per click (CPC) due to its larger audience and more competitive landscape. On the other hand, Microsoft Advertising typically has lower CPCs and may present more affordable opportunities, especially if you're operating in a niche market or targeting specific demographics.


Ad Placement and Visibility

Google Ads provides access to a vast network of websites and apps through its Display Network. This allows your ads to appear on various platforms beyond search results, such as YouTube, Gmail, and popular websites. Microsoft Advertising also offers ad placements on partner sites and search engines like Yahoo. While Google Ads may provide broader visibility opportunity, this isn't always a positive. In our experience, limiting both Search platforms to Search Results Pages only, while managing Display and other interactive campaign types separately, ensures the best ROI from your marketing activities.





Support and Resources

Both platforms provide resources and support to help advertisers succeed. Google Ads offers extensive documentation, tutorials, and a library of certifications. Microsoft Advertising offers a similar range of resources, including training materials, webinars, and a dedicated support team. Ultimately, as with other major advertising platforms, the level of support you receive will likely depend on your advertising spend and account size. Most SMBs, including advertising agencies, will struggle with attaining support from these giants.


Conclusion

Choosing between Google and Microsoft for search advertising ultimately depends on your specific advertising goals, target audience, budget, and competition in your industry. Consider factors such as reach, cost, features, ad placement, and available resources when making your decision. At Seamount Marketing, our general recommendation is to run Search campaigns on both platforms simultaneously, providing a wider reach and diversified Search advertising strategy, facilitating budget allocation based on comparative metrics, e.g. cost per click and cost per conversion.





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