The PPC Pro’s Ultimate Guide to Bing Retargeting

This is part of our series The PPC Pro’s Ultimate Guide to Retargeting. 

With significantly lower search volume than Google, sometimes Bing is overlooked as a tool in the PPC remarketing arsenal. Since Bing often has lower CPCs and less competition than other PPC channels, it could be a great fit for your remarketing efforts.

Getting Started with Bing Ads Remarketing

1. Bing Ads UET Tag Set-Up

If you’re already advertising on Bing Ads, most likely, you already have a UET tag set up already to track conversions. This same tag is what is used to track conversions and target audiences using remarketing lists.  If not, it’s a fairly quick and easy process.

Bing Ads only recommends one UET tag per website, but you can read about the exceptions if you think you might need one.

If you’re using Google Tag Manager, there is already a “prebuilt” Bing Ads Universal Event Tracking tag. For event type, select “Page Load.”  Use your “All Pages” trigger.

You’ll know your UET tag is working with you see your Tag status as “active.” Navigate to “Conversion Tracking”, then select “UET tags” and look under “Tracking Status”. You can also keep tabs on the UET tag status with a Chrome extension if you like.

2. Creating Remarketing Lists and Custom Audiences

To get started on your lists and audiences, go “Shared Library”, then “Audiences.” From here, you can create up to 1,000 audiences per account.

Four Primary Rule Types:

  1. Visitors of a page
  2. Visitors of a page who did not visit another page
  3. Visitors of a page who also visited another page
  4. Custom events

There are countless possibilities for audience creation, but below is a screenshot example for those who looked at what was in the cart, but never completed the purchase to make it to the thank you page. The membership duration defaults to 30 days, but you can create multiple lists based on your buying cycle. The maximum duration allowed is 180 days. Depending on your sales funnel, you can create the same list with varying lengths to reach your target audience with different messages at different times. Be very careful about the scope level you choose because it cannot be edited once the list is selected; you have to create a new list to change the scope.

Think Wide-Reaching

You can get creative with the “Visitors of a Page” remarketing list rule.  For example, if you are using dynamic URL parameters in your other marketing efforts, you can create a remarketing list based on a segment of those URLs. Here is how you might set up a remarketing list for those have engaged with your PPC efforts on Pinterest.

However, if you wanted to target everyone who came to your site via Pinterest, you could set the Referrer URL contains option (not the URL contains) to pinterest.com. If you only wanted to your organic Pinterest visitors and not your paid, you’d add a second rule to exclude your custom paid parameters via URL does not contain utm_source=pinterest&utm_medium=cpc.

Think about how you can remarket to:

  • those who interacted with specific ads or videos on your social channels
  • your organic visitors
  • visitors who have interacted with specific pages on your website
  • those who have used the searched for something very particular

Custom Events

By adding custom event JavaScript to the UET tag tracking code, you can track specific events on your website. These might include particular button clicks, asset downloads, video engagement or link clicks, to name a few. You can then create remarketing lists based on these events. Think through how the actions on your site fit into your sales funnel and what messages you would use to reach out to your target audience via remarketing.

You’ll need to customize your JavaScript with the following:

  1. Event category: What you want to track (newsletter sign-up, PDF download, video watched)
  2. Event action: What the user does that you want to track (click, play, pause)
  3. Event label: What is the name of this action (the specific name of the button, asset, video)
  4. Event value: What is the numeric value for the event, if any (amount of donation given, length of video watched)

3. Assign your remarketing list(s) to ad groups

Now that the hard work is done, the next step is easy. All you have to do is associate a remarketing list with an ad group. Unfortunately, this cannot be done at the Campaign Level. The ad groups can be from Search, Native or Bing Shopping Campaigns.

  1. Go to the Campaigns page.
  2. Navigate to the Audiences tab.
  3. Click “Create association”.

Be extremely careful with your settings. For remarketing only ad groups, select “Target and bid.” If you want to see performance for your remarketing lists or to bid on them within your all search ad groups, select “Bid only”.

Be particular about which lists you’d like to add as ad group exclusions as well.

If you want to add lists in bulk, go to the Ad groups tab, select the ad groups you’d like to add the lists to, then click “Edit” & “Associate with audiences”.

4. Optimization

You can view list performance and make bid adjustments from the Audiences tab. From here, if you’d like to compare different audience performances at the Campaign level, go to the Campaign tab, click “Segment”, then scroll down to “Audience”.

For your remarketing only campaigns, you might consider broader keyword terms and higher bids.

Try layering your ad groups with various lists, adjusting your bid modifiers and excluded audiences, and various membership duration lists.

5. On the Horizon

Two exciting features are in the works.

  1. In-market Audiences: These are groups of people who, based on user signals across Bing, MSN and other Microsoft services, have indicated that are likely to be in the interested in making a purchase decision.  Currently, there are are 14 in-market audiences in pilot in the US.  For example, if someone has been searching for older car models, the typical maintenance for older car models and where to buy used cars, they are likely to fall into the “Vehicles/Motor Vehicles/Used Motor Vehicles” audience.  The audiences currently available are: 
  2. Custom Audiences: The ability to upload your own audiences so that you can target, bid and apply unique ad messages to your own user lists is currently in pilot globally. The only caveat is that you currently have to use Adobe Audience Manager to participate in the pilot.

You can read more about these pilots and watch the video announcement about them here. Reach out to your Bing account team to inquire about participating in either pilot.

If you are already participating in the pilots, make sure you use new Audience Segmentation reporting tool to compare your audience data from the Segment tab in the Account summary, Campaigns, Ad Groups, Ads, Keywords or Ad Extensions areas of the interface.

A Few Tips for Bing Ads Remarketing:

  • It can take up to 24 hours for Bing Ads to recognize your UET tag.
  • Your lists need 1,000 people on them before they will be eligible for remarketing.
  • You can add remarketing lists in Search, Native or Bing Shopping Campaigns.
  • Remarketing is not available via the content network.
  • Your target can opt out of seeing your ads via choice.microsoft.com or from their Windows Settings.
  • Visit Bing Ad’s Remarketing Page for all the specifics regarding excluded products, ages, sensitive categories, etc.
  • There is a limit of 20,000,000 associations per account, which is all-inclusive for custom audiences, in-market audiences, and remarketing list associations.

Hopefully,  this is helpful to get you started or advance to the next level of remarketing in Bing.

How has Bing remarketing worked for your business or clients?  Have any questions?  Please comment below to share!

Comments (2)

  1. I have noticed just like the search ads Bing remarketing is a little cheaper than Adwords across the board. You noticed this as well in your own experiments too?

    Corey Z.
    Guaranteed PPC

  2. Yes I have, which makes it such a shame that the volume is so much less in comparison as well.

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