Quality Assurance Troubles with Microsoft Bing

By Alexis Vickery, Account Manager

The launch of the Bing search engine earlier this summer brought a renewal of traffic and interest to Microsoft’s search engine. Along with a new name and landing page layout, Microsoft also revamped its search engine algorithm to reflect more relevant results, including a focus on key verticals like travel, local and shopping. However, the new algorithm also promised to only serve paid search ads based on each user’s historic propensity to click on sponsored results. While these changes were all made to improve the overall user interaction for Bing, it created a QA (Quality Assurance) problem for advertisers and agencies.

With the launch of any new campaign comes the gauntlet of quality assurance tests that the advertiser or agency has to go through to ensure the new campaign is running smoothly. These check-ups come in the form of double-checking bulk sheets, running search engine reports, checking rankings in real-time, and of course, pulling screen shots of your hard-earned, top-positioned ads in the search engines. While many advertisers and agencies rely on reporting to view average ranking scores, checking the results live in the engine is a best practice and preferable to confirm listings are live and are showing properly.

However, if you’re advertising in Bing, this may be tricky.

According to Bing’s new search engine algorithm, neither myself nor anyone on my team clicks on enough sponsored search results to have any ads displayed to me on a regular basis – we search to QA, not to click on listings. As a result, any small glitches, misspellings, or formatting “type-o’s” that may have been overlooked through the thousands of bulk sheet lines would not normally be caught by anyone on our team doing a search in Bing.

Our solution for this problem is to utilize your Microsoft Account Manager to bypass the algorithm internally and provide an array of screen shots. This still requires us to internally have an even more stringent QA process in the Microsoft Ad Center interface or a third party search marketing platform like DART Search because we will have no chance of visually confirming it on the actual live searches. By using reporting, manual fact checking within the user interface, and your Microsoft reps, every part of the paid search performance can be analyzed and checked fully.


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