Dalip Tyagi

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The Bing Ads platform is delivering to growing mobile search audience

Note: This was originally published on ExclusiveConcepts.com as a guest blog article.

Today, almost 89% of all consumers use a search engine for purchase decisions, be it for movie tickets, the nearest gas station, comparing cars or searching for new shoes. And, we are seeing that one 1 in 3 online searches happen on a mobile device – more than doubling from a year prior. These trends are global, and eMarketer expects by 2017, one-third of the world’s population will be operating a smartphone. That’s two and a half billion people! From an advertiser’s standpoint, mobile advertising – which, according to Gartner, is estimated to hit $42 billion in spend by 2017, up from $13.1 billion in 2013.

Contrary to popular perception, mobile plays a key role throughout the consumer decision journey – and not just for showrooming or last-minute, low-consideration items. Microsoft Research and IPSOS conducted in-depth research with mobile consumers around the world to understand how the broad adoption of smartphones and other mobile devices were influencing the consumer’s path to purchase. What we found was that consumers rely on their mobile devices throughout the process – from the initial stages all the way through the shopping, purchasing and sharing process.

In fact, a study conducted by Nielsen for xAd & Telmetrics reports that 40% of smartphone users and 44% of tablet users relied exclusively on their smartphones or tablets in conducting online research across a range of purchase categories.

 

An additional key takeaway is the power of mobile search is to influence a user’s decision in their “mobile moment” when they are close to the point of purchase.  We see that 70% of conversions* happen within 5 hours of mobile search versus 7 days for desktop search. This shortened conversion cycle reflects the heightened urgency of mobile queries – mobile users are often in their cars or in a public setting when they are searching for products or retail locations and need to get information while they are in transit.

Bing Ads Platform and Yahoo Bing Network

Trends are similar on our platform as well and we see that in 1 in 3 online searches happen on a mobile device. Mobile search volume as a % of all queries has more than doubled year-over-year across the Yahoo Bing Network over the past year.

We are seeing savvy advertisers taking advantage of the Yahoo Bing Network’s growing mobile search volume and the Bing Ads platform, which is consistently evolving and improving to get the best return on their mobile advertising investment.

The Yahoo Bing Network’s search and click volumes from smartphone users have also more than doubled year-over-year. Click volumes have generally outpaced growth in search volume – demonstrating the high degree of consumer engagement and relevance of mobile ads on the Yahoo Bing Network.

 

 

Taking a deeper look at year-over-year click growth in key verticals such as retail, technology and telecommunications, financial services, and automotive, the Yahoo Bing Network delivered big year-over-year gains in Q3, 2014. Tech and Telco was the big winner, with nearly 300% year-over-year growth, while retail, auto and financial services all doubled (or more!) in click volume.

The Bing Ads lineup of mobile products is designed to help move consumers through their path to purchase – and deliver conversions for advertisers.

 

At Bing Ads, we know that mobile devices are an important part of consumers’ lives. The Yahoo Bing Network is working hard to provide advertisers with the best mobile advertising ROI while building query share across all devices. Moving forward, advertisers can expect to see more value for their businesses as we continue to invest in increasing share. Here’s how:

  • Site Link Extensions: Guide consumers onto your ideal conversion path to drive deeper mobile site engagement while delivering 10-15% improvement in CTR. 
  • Call Extensions: Click to call drives conversions while delivering 15-25% lift in CTR for campaigns. Consumers expect to be able to find a phone number in search results, and 47% of mobile search users said they would “explore other brands” if they didn’t quickly find phone numbers.
  • Location Extensions: drive foot traffic, not just web traffic and our data shows +15% CTR lift for campaigns with Location Extensions.  One of the top reasons that consumers use mobile search when they are on the go is to find locations and directions – leading directly to in-store purchases.
  • App Extensions: New app extensions, which are now being piloted for a planned Q1 2015 launch, will make it easy for searchers to discover and download your app to Android, iOS or Windows Phone devices. These extensions will automatically be targeted to a specific user’s OS and device combination.
  • Targeting Improvements: Even more precise targeting options, including zip code, radius and geo location targeting have recently been added, with even more on the way. 

 

As the marketing mix debate rages on, one thing is clear: mobile advertising has never been easier or more effective, thanks to the Yahoo Bing Network. And you can count on Bing Ads to help you optimize this fast-growing platform with enhancements and support to ensure your success all year long.

Any additional comments please ping me on Twitter: @dtyagi

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Seasonal Campaigns: Animated 2015 Tax eBook Available for US Ad Agencies

Tax season is already underway and many people will want to receive their 2014 tax refunds promptly to help pay off holiday bills, start planning vacations, make home improvements and more, so they’ll be filing early and online. Last year, 86% of those who filed did so electronically.1 Peak search periods happened in early February, remained steady throughout March and then peaked again in April.2

 

This may be a niche segment of your client portfolio, but it’s one that can yield huge returns on PPC ads given the audience’s strong reliance on search. We’ve put together the 2015 Bing Ads Tax eBook to give you the latest insights and tips you need to help your tax-service clients’ search advertising campaigns make an impact on their customers.

The numbers are your best asset:

  • 136.9M individual tax returns were filed in 2014. 1
  • 86% of them were filed electronically5 – that’s 118M! 1

 

Yahoo Bing Network’s net worth:

-       167M unique searchers in the U.S.2

-       5.3 billion monthly searches2

-       2.9M total tax searchers3

-       7M total tax searches3

-       42% of all tax-paid clicks3

-       29% of tax searchers not reached on Google3

-       20% more likely to purchase personal finance/tax software offline4

Employ this information and focus on streamlined targeting, keyword and content improvement and take advantage of new tools and features that enhance your search advertising campaigns to optimize your tax season efforts.

In addition to the Tax eBook, you can find even more marketing research and resources on the Agency Hub. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.  

Sincerely,

Dalip Tyagi

SMB Agency Marketing ׀ Bing Ads

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1 File.com, 2014 merged with IRS Filing Season Statistics for week ending May 16, 2014.

2 comScore Explicit Core Search (custom), September 2014; the Yahoo Bing Network includes Microsoft and Yahoo Core Search sites in the U.S.

3 comScore qSearch (custom), U.S., March 2014; industry categories based on comScore classifications.

4 comScore Plan Metrix, U.S., March 2014, custom measure created using comScore indices and duplication. March data was used to reflect the month before tax filings are due.

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The Year in Review and a Look Ahead from the Global Agency and Partner Team

We hope that everyone was able to take some time off during the holiday season and connect with family and friends. Now back in office for the New Year, we’re excited to ramp up our Bing Ads partner support program for you. Take a look at what Bing programs were available last year and what you can expect in 2015. We’re dedicated to your success.

 

Notable Activities in 2014

  • Audience: The Yahoo Bing Network continues to grow and be a place for quality searchers that spend more online. As of September 2014, in the U.S. alone you can reach 167 million unique searchers that represent 5.3 billion monthly searches for your clients. That’s 29% of the search market. Plus, these searchers spend 26% more online than the average Internet searcher.1

            With the Yahoo Bing Network you get a global audience, particularly in major markets including: 2

    • Canada: 16 million searchers, 252 million monthly searches, 11% search share
    • UK: 26 million, 615 million monthly searches, 10% search share
    • France: 16 million, 272 million monthly searches
    • Germany: 16 million, 152 million monthly searches
    • Our searchers worldwide spend 60% more online than Google searchers

 

  • Product: As Steve Sirich noted in his blog, our engineering team has been working tirelessly to deliver improved performance, increased efficiency and better value to our partners. There were two important features that we delivered with agencies in mind: Accounts Summary to view and manage multiple accounts on one page, and simplification of the online insertion order. I would like to extend a thanks to all of our agencies that provided invaluable feedback.

 

  • Supporting partner innovations: We were also excited to support our partners’ incredibly innovative Bing Ads gadgets. One that really stood out was the Bing Ads Performance Grader released by WordStream, Inc., a provider of search engine marketing software and services. This new tool allows Bing advertisers to quickly evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of their accounts and get actionable tips for improvement. This can help you pinpoint Bing Ads campaigns where big improvements can be made, reducing costs and driving better results.

 

  • Bing Ads Connect and partner Events: We took the feedback from our first Bing Ads Connect event held in Seattle in November 2013 and extended it to global partners across Europe, Asia and Australia. We also supported numerous Agency and Partner events including one in Denver last fall that was organized by Acquisio, one of the top bidding tool providers in the country.  In addition we supported numerous agency and partner led events in the U.S. and Canada.

 

  • Local and vertical insights: One of the interesting aspects of connecting with agencies like yours that are serving SMB customers is hearing about the need for insights at the local level. We piloted the project at our Bing Ads Connect event and based on the feedback, made the content available for broader use on the Agency Hub (see the right rail).

 

  • Driving promotional activities: Last year we sponsored several promotional activities that allowed us to engage directly with partners to train them on new tools and features and reward them with Bing Ads credit coupons and sweepstakes. The one held during the holiday season was a major hit and one lucky company even went home with a brand new Xbox One.

 

  • Training: In person and online, Bing Ads training for partners expanded greatly in 2014. The online training curriculum added five-plus hours of new content. Other notable successes included having strong partners like Lynda.com offering Bing Ads Essential training, and Cardinal Path offering classroom training.

 

Exciting Activities Coming in 2015 

  • Continued support: We will continue to support our partners with dedicated account management services in addition to delivering actionable insights, ready to use campaigns and more quality data–including platform and network improvements at no extra cost.

 

  • Global resources and assets: We heard there’s a global demand for more Bing Ads training and marketing collateral. We’re already formulating a strategic package of materials that will help partners like you get started and/or optimize your ad efforts with us. We’re committed to enabling your success.

 

  • Connecting through in-person and digital events: The Bing Ads Connect and partner events calendar for 2015 is already available. Be sure to check it out and schedule those events that you can attend either in person or digitally.

 

  • Supporting partners in their plans and innovations: We’ll continue to sponsor partner events, presentations and promoting their good work through marketing support. If you have ideas in mind, please share them with your account manager or with me directly (dalipt@microsoft.com).

 

  • Promotions and contests: We love to engage and work with you on your Bing Ads campaigns. We’ll support a number of fun promotions and contests in 2015 that give you an extra boost and add some fun to time spent on your search advertising campaigns.

 

  • Unparalleled data: We’ll continue to provide higher-quality data that is focused on local, mobile and verticals to help you make better informed advertising decisions.

 

Questions? Comments? Feel free to ping me on Twitter.

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  1. comScore Explicit Core Search (custom), September 2014; the Yahoo Bing Network includes Microsoft and Yahoo Core Search sites in the U.S.
  2. comScore qSearch (custom), September 2014. The Yahoo Bing Network includes Microsoft and Yahoo sites worldwide.

 

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Custom Holiday Kit Available for Ad Agencies in the US and Canada

The holidays are the number one retail season of the year. E-commerce sales alone accounted for $95.7 billion in the U.S. just last year1 and 2014 is looking even better. This is a great opportunity for agencies to reach more searchers that are buyers for their clients.

One of the best things about the holiday season is the calendar. The designated holidays and sales dates like Black Friday and Cyber Monday inform agencies when to run their client ad campaigns, check performance reports and optimize. If done correctly, it’s like hitting the lottery on repeat.  

To help out, we’ve created a custom Holiday Kit just for agencies that details everything they need to know to be an informed search advertiser this season.

The Agency Holiday Kit includes (click to download in the US | in Canada):

Also worth noting, based on feedback we received last year, agencies can now customize the client-facing brochure with their agency information.

For advertisers in the US only: We have a limited number of physical copies of the Holiday Kit available that you can order through your account management team or by calling (800) 518-5689. Any US-based Agency or SEM professional interested in either getting started with Bing Ads or in promoting Bing Ads to their current and potential clients is eligible to receive a kit free of charge. Please note quantities are limited and will be claimed on a first come, first served basis.

Want more? Check the Bing Ads Agency Hub (US | CA) for more agency-specific content and ad insights.

Questions? Comments? Leave them below, or ping me on Twitter.

NOTE: The information contained in this blog post is intended for agencies and advertisers that are self-managed or supported by Microsoft. If you are an agency or advertiser managed by Yahoo, the details therein may not be applicable, and you are encouraged to contact your Account Representative for more information.

 

1.      Zeller, Allison, “In retail, it’s never too early to prepare for the holidays.” National Retail Federation. June 5, 2014. https://nrf.com/news/retail-its-never-too-early-prepare-the-holidays

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Free Back-to-School eBook Helps Take Your Ads to the Top of the Class

School will be starting before you know it, and back-to-school shopping is in full swing! In fact, back-to-school is the second largest retail season of the year behind the winter holidays.

  • Shoppers spent an estimated $72.5 billion during the 2013 back-to-school season1
  • 73% of people begin shopping three or more weeks before school starts1
  • On average, people spend $350 on back-to-school supplies2

We’ve created the Bing Ads Back-to-School eBook to help you make the most of this back-to-school shopping season. It’s crammed full of helpful data and insights to reach more customers and make your clients’ ads stand out.

In the Back to School eBook, you’ll find out how to grow your client profits this season, including things like:

  • Information on back-to-school market spend and search trends

 

  • How to connect with back-to-school shoppers

 

  • Tips on writing A+ ad copy

 

  • The latest info on Bing Ads features that will help set your clients’ ads apart

 

Download the Bing Ads Back-to-School eBook today and take advantage of this year’s back-to-school shopping season! As always, we love hearing from you.

Questions? Comments? Leave them below, or ping me on Twitter.

NOTE: The information contained in this blog post is intended for agencies and advertisers that are self-managed or supported by Microsoft.  If you are an agency or advertiser managed by Yahoo, the details therein may not be applicable, and you are encouraged to contact your Account Representative for more information.

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1. Brown, Shari; “2013 Back-to-School Survey (U.S.),” National Retail Federation. July 1-8, 2013.

2. Stolt, Jacalyn, “Trending for Back to School: One Direction and Dorm Room Chandeliers,” Google Shopping Blog. 24 July 2013.

 

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New Faces Joining Future Bing Ads Connect Events in Austin and Chicago

Every time I meet with our customers and partners, I learn something new, something we can do better, and something we can be more effective at. During past events, our event attendees have said that they wanted to hear the industry perspective on search in general, and also from a Bing Ads perspective in particular.

As always, we do our best to meet the needs of our customers and partners. With that in mind, I am happy to announce that Bryan Eisenberg will be joining us for Bing Ads Connect in Austin on May 30, 2014, speaking on the anatomy of a perfect landing page for both PCs and mobile devices, and Lisa Raehsler will join us for Bing Ads Connect in Chicago on May 6, 2014, to speak about Local, Mobile and Product Ads.

For those who aren't already familiar with Bryan and Lisa, here's a brief bio for each:

Bryan Eisenberg is an internationally recognized authority and pioneer in online marketing, improving online conversion rates, Persuasion Architecture, marketing tools, web analytics, big data, and persona marketing. For more than 15 years, Eisenberg, along with his brother Jeffrey, have helped small, medium, and large B2B and B2C companies like HP, Intel, Overstock, NBC Universal, ICE.com and hundreds of others to craft accountable digital marketing strategies, emphasizing the optimization of customer experiences in order to convert more leads, subscriptions, and sales. Currently he consults, train and mentor select clients.

Together, with his brother, Jeffery, Bryan co-wrote “Call to Action” and “Waiting For Your Cat to Bark?” Both books are Wall Street Journal and New York Times bestsellers, as well as “Always Be Testing” and “Persuasive Online Copywriting”. Bryan and Jeffrey have also been featured as experts by The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.

 

Lisa Raehsler is the founder and principal strategist at Big Click Co., an online advertising company and Google Adwords Partner, specializing in strategy and management of SEM and PPC for search engines, display, retargeting, and social media ad campaigns. Lisa has led strategy on hundreds of PPC accounts and puts her experience into practice every day as a thought leader in integrating clients' search campaigns across earned, owned, and other paid media. In addition to agency work, she has led successful online marketing programs at Thomson Reuters in search marketing, merchandising, and ecommerce strategies at the enterprise level.

She has participated extensively in the local interactive community, as well as at national search engine marketing conferences. Lisa's recent speaking engagements include ClickZ Live, SES, OMS, MIMA, HeroConf, and SMX conferences, as well as numerous private and public training engagements. As a columnist for ClickZ and Search Engine Watch, she writes on the topic of paid search.

Please join us at the next two Bing Ads Connect events and meet with Bryan and Lisa as well. As always, please feel free to get in touch with any questions or feedback (leave a comment below) and if you haven’t signed up for our newsletter, please do so at http://bingads.com/agency

Thanks for reading and hopefully we'll see you at a Bing Ads Connect event near you!

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