Paid Search (PPC)

Bing Ads is Microsoft’s paid Search Advertising platform, similar in many ways to to the Google AdWords platform. It can be a worth while alternative to Google AdWords, and for those already using Google AdWords, it is even possible to transfer over your Google AdWords campaigns into Bing Ads using a campaign import feature.

However, setting up Bing Ads conversion tracking is not as straightforward as it should be, because the Javascript code that you need to insert onto your site to track completed goals often fails to trigger. In this post I will look at the different options available to set up conversion tracking for Bing Ads so that you can successfully identify sales and enquiries that have resulted from your Bing advertising campaigns.

How To Set Up Conversion Goals in BingAds

First let’s look at the settings in Bing Ads to set up conversion tracking. To measure the return on your advertising spend it is important to establish your goals. In Bing Ads you can do this by going to the Shared Library section and creating a goal. Depending on what you want to tracking you can select from the following options:

  • Destination URL
  • Duration
  • Pages viewed per visit
  • Event
  • Mobile app install

To measure form completions or purchases, select the Destination URL option and enter the URL of the order confirmation or enquiry form thank you page:

BingAds Conversion Tracking settings

The conversion window settings allow you to set the maximum period of time after a user clicks on your add and then go on to make a purchase or enquiry. The default value is 30 days, but it can be set as high as 90 days.

Under the counting section you also have the option to track unique users’ completing goals or to count every goal completed by a user. For example if a user completes two transactions during one visit, or within the conversion window period, this will count as two goals completed.

Once you have entered the details, save the goal and the copy the JavaScript code provided and past it into the code of your website:

BingAds UET code needs to be added onto every page of your website

Bing Ads UET javascript code needs to be added onto every page of your website.

This process is very similar to setting up Goals in Google Analytics. The difference is that the Javascript tracking code from Bing Ads is unreliable and doesn’t always work.

What do you do if Bing Ads Conversion Tracking Code doesn’t work?

So how do you measure conversions from your Bing Ads if the conversion tracking code does is so unreliable? The answer is to use create custom URLs for your Bing Ads and to set up goals in Google Analytics. In this way you can see where the traffic source your enquiries have come from and attribute this back to Bing Ads.

Using Google’s URL builder tool enables shows you the format for creating custom URLs. If you follow this format you can understand the different parameters you can add to each of your Bing Ads advert URLs so that you can interpret that results of your advertising in Google Analytics.

The elements that you need to add to your Advert URLs are as follows:

  • Campaign Source* (Required) – The source of the traffic. For tracking Bing Ads you should set this to Bing or Bing Ads.
    • This code will look like: ?utm_source=Bing
  • Campaign Medium* (Required) – Specify whether the medium is email or PPC advertising
    • For example if you enter medium as cpc the code to track the traffic medium is. &utm_medium=cpc
  • Campaign Term (Optional) Used to identify the keyword that triggered your Ads
    • For example if the keyword was document translation services the code would be: &utm_term=document translation services
  • Campaign Content (Optional) – You can either enter the AdGroup name to identify the AdGroup that the keyword was in that triggered the click
    • For example if you want to record the AdGroup name Document Translation the code is as follows:
      &utm_content=Document Translation
  • Campaign Name (Required) – Record the Bing Ads campaign name. If you are importing Campaigns from Google AdWords into Bing, it can be useful to use a different naming convention for your campaign names compared to the names you have used in Google AdWords. For example you could add a number in from of every campaign name.
    • If you enter the campaign name as 0. Document Translation the code would be &utm_campaign=0. Document Translation

Following the steps above the full custom URL would be as follows:
yourwebsiteaddress.com/?utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=document translation services&utm_content=Document Translation&utm_campaign=0. Document Translation.

In an ideal world Bing Ads conversion tracking Javascript code would work out the box, but at least using custom URLs provides a work around to this issue.

Where can you see Bing Ads campaign performance in Google Analytics?

Once you have customised the URLs of your adverts using the URL builder, and have had some clicks on your Bing Ads, you can view the performance in Google Analytics. Simply log in to your Google Analytics account and go to the Acquisition section, select Campaign, then Paid Keywords, and add a secondary dimension for Source/Medium. You should now be able to see Bing / CPC  traffic source and the keywords that were clicked on:
How to view BingAds performance in Google Analytics

Where to look in Google Analytics to see your Bing Ads campaign performance once you have setup custom URLs

Hopefully you now have a basic understanding of how to implement setup Bing conversion tracking using custom URLs. As always, if you have any questions or comments then please feel free to comment below.

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