Sameer Abrol

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Location Exclusion in Bing Ads: How to Keep Your Ads From Showing in a Specific Geographic Region | #ppc #sem #advertising

Reaching out to the right target audience with business offerings is a critical component of paid search advertising. Geographic Targeting is one of the key features in an advertising platform that allows you to show or not show your ads to consumers in a specific region and helps you optimize your spending as well as raise your CTR and conversion rates.

There are times when you may want to tailor your messaging based on a specific location, for example, if you do not provide services in certain geographic regions within your targeted locations. In these instances, you can now leverage a new location exclusion capability to exclude ads being shown to consumers in specific areas. You can also significantly simplify your location targeting by including the larger geographical region and excluded locations within that. This should help improve the manageability of your selected locations in your campaign or ad group; you can now exclude countries, metro areas and cities via Bing Ads online, the Bing Ads API (version 8 only) and Bing Ads Editor.

Here are some reasons why you might want to use the location exclusion feature:

1. You have a business that doesn’t provide services in specific regions within a larger geographic region.  For instance, you have an e-commerce site that reaches out to everyone in the United States but doesn’t ship to Alaska and Hawaii. You can now include United States and exclude Alaska and Hawaii (see Figure B below). This will help significantly simplify your targeting selection where instead of selecting 48 states as you would have previously, you now only have to exclude 2 states.

2. You want to take advantage of unique characteristics of different regions and show offers, messages, and benefits to few regions of a larger targeted area.  For example, you sell real estate in the state of Washington and your ad copy specifies certain areas:

a. Showcase apartment rentals in Seattle and Bellevue

b. Showcase houses for sale in Redmond

c. Showcase general real estate sales in Washington

In this instance, you would have one ad group that is targeted to state of Washington and excludes Seattle, Bellevue and Redmond. You would have another ad group targeted to Seattle and Bellevue and the final ad group showing to the users in Redmond.

Figure A

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3. You need to take into account legal considerations for your business in certain locations.  Let’s say you are a pharmaceutical company that doesn’t sell products in specific geographical locations due to legal compliance. You can now use this feature to exclude those geographical locations from your campaigns.

Here’s how to access the location exclusion feature in Bing Ads online, which is currently available at both the campaign and ad group level:

1. Click the Location link to expand location targeting options

2. Click on the Exclude link within selected cities, metro areas, state/provinces, and countries/regions option while searching or browsing for a location.

3. Click the Map link to view the included and excluded locations on the map.

Figure B

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The goal of any PPC campaign is maximize conversions -- you want to make sure people seeing your ad and visiting your website are the consumers you cater to. By utilizing a combination of location targeting and excluded regions, you can narrow down exactly who will see your ad copy.

Thanks for reading, please feel free to leave any thoughts or questions in the comments section below.

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