Bing Ads Enhanced CPC (also known as eCPC) has been launched; an opt-in setting where Bing Ads can optimise your campaigns for conversions. What does this mean for you? How does it work? Should you use it? As always, we will answer all of your questions and provide you with some actionable insight you can apply to your Paid Search strategies.
What is Bing Ads Enhanced CPC (eCPC)?
Bing Ads Enhanced CPC is a automated bid strategy that helps you to maximise your conversions whilst still having control over your bids. Effectively, Bing Ads will raise your bid for clicks that they deem are more likely to lead to a sale or conversion for you and your site. According to Bing…
When you enable Enhanced CPC for your campaign, Bing Ads will automatically adjust your bids in real time so that you bid up to 30% higher on users that are more likely to convert and bid up to 100% less on users less likely to convert. (Bing Ads, 2016)
Bing and Google both say that by opting your campaigns into the Enhanced CPC (eCPC) setting, it will help your campaign get more conversions, lower your cost-per-aquisition (CPA) and further improve your return on investment (ROI) across both Google Adwords and Bing Ads.
How does it work?
Google has a great way of explaining how Enhanced CPCs work…
Imagine that your job is to stand outside a barber’s shop and bring in new customers. If a businessman with shaggy hair comes walking by, then you give him a big wave and a hello. If a bald man walks by, then not so much. (Google Adwords Help, 2016)
But how does Bing and Google know if this is the right customer or not?
Effectively, both engine’s use a combination of a few factors. One of the key factors is around monitoring trends in recent search history. If terms you are searching for seem to contain ‘purchase buzzwords’, then they know that you are in the market and are therefore more likely to convert. It will use your previous data to help determine this, which is why you need to be using Bing and Google conversion tracking in Bing Ads and Google Adwords.
ECPC factors in real-time details such as device, browser, location and time of day to adjust your bids during each ad auction. I repeat, EACH AD AUCTION! It’s literally as granular as you can get with bidding.
How do I switch it on?
According to Bing Ads, there are a few ways that you can get started:
1. If you go to your Campaign Settings, you should now see a Bid Strategy section. Here, you can click ‘Enhanced CPC’ or ‘Manual CPC’. To opt your campaign into Enhanced CPC, click ‘Enhanced CPC: Adjust my bid to get more conversions’
2. In the campaigns overview tab, there is now a simple opt-in option under the ‘Bid Strategy’ heading. Again, you can click ‘Enhanced CPC: Adjust my bid to get more conversions’ to start utilising the tool!
3. You can also use Bing Ads Editor to opt in across multiple campaigns.
A few important things to remember:
- You must have conversion tracking (a UET tag and a conversion goal) set up for Enhanced CPC to work. See What is conversion tracking? for more information.
- Enhanced CPC is not currently supported for Bing Shopping Campaigns (at the time of writing). We do expect this to come around some time soon though as Google does allow this feature for Google Shopping Campaigns.
- Please note that Enhanced CPC is only available for Search and Content Campaigns. You can also manage bid strategies in Bing APIs. Learn more here.
- Enhanced CPC doesn’t factor in which device the user is on, it will only raise/decrease bids if factors deem that it needs to change the bid. However, this doesn’t mean that you don’t need to change your Device Bid Adjustment. We highly recommend doing this still, particularly if you recognise that one device works best for you over another.
Why has Bing launched Enhanced CPC?
Bing know’s it’s an afterthought
Bing often gets forgotten about (here’s why you should stop ignoring it it). When compared to Google, there isn’t much traffic that comes from Bing. But this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t support it. What tends to happen is that all of the key optimisations are made in Google day-to-day, with Bing then being an afterthought. Bing Ads Enhanced CPC allows you to continue driving value from the search engine, whilst not having to manage it as closely as we tend to do with Google.
Continuing to drive value through Bing Ads
The tool will do a lot of the bid optimisations for you so you can put your mind to rest by using this to manage some of your performance. This then can free up your time to focus more on the interesting stuff! In theory, the better the performance you see from Bing, the more you will invest into it both with time and budget. Win Win for Bing! Remember, don’t be scared of losing a bit of control. If used properly, Enhanced CPC has been proven to work really well for marketers.
How should I use Bing Ads Enhanced CPCs?
Utilise it on Generics
Most strategies have Brand based at Position 1, ad you want to always protect you Brand activity. Using this tool on Brand keywords opens you up to the risk of Bing changing your Avg Position for these keywords, so we don’t recommend using it here. Instead, we 100% recommend using it on Generics; this is where you are going to see the benefits to your overall performance through a higher Conversion Rate and a lower CPA.
Top Tip – Use it alongside your 3rd Party tools
You can continue to utilise this product alongside your 3rd party tools such as Doubleclick for Search (DS3) or Marin, even if you are utilising their bidding strategies such as Doubleclick’s ‘Bid Strategies’ or Marin’s ‘Bidding Folders’. It can be used really effectively as an additional layer of granularity in your bidding.
Try it on Competitor terms
Competitor terms are always the most expensive, why not test out Bing Ads Enhanced CPC here to try and drive further efficiencies in your Paid Search performance.
Try it for 30 days, monitor the results
Probably the best way to see if Enhanced CPC works for you is to opt in your campaigns and then monitor Average CPC, Conversion Rates, CPA and ROI for 30 days. You can then look to compare this to the previous 30 days from before you applied the tool to your activity. If you have a close enough relationship with Google & Bing, they can also pull a report for you which will show the impact of when Enhanced CPCs are used versus when they are not used so you can monitor the results side by side more effectively. Unfortunately this option won’t be open to everyone and will only really be available to larger agencies.
Overall, we believe that this tool should be fully embraced by marketers across both Bing and Google. Having this level of bidding granularity is an awesome tool to have in our arsenal. It’s a no brainer! The main thing to remember is not to be scared of losing a little bit of control. Don’t be scared if your Avg CPCs look higher than your Max CPC either, this can sometimes happen when using Enhanced CPC.
Automation through such tools are getting more prevalent. Automation through bidding is happening, get over it! This should then free up your time to focus on driving wider business value for your clients. This tool helps to push your message into the right place, at the right time; helping advertiser, client, search engine and consumer.
Want to feedback on how Bing Ads Enhanced CPC is working for you? You can let Bing know here.