Confirmed: Units Resembling Product Listing Ads Appearing On Bing

Microsoft has been fast-following Google AdWords with new features in adCenter recently, so it’s not a huge surprise that some have spotted what look like Product Listing Ads (PLAs) in Bing Results. Mark Ballard from Rimm Kaufmann Group (RKG’s) posted of seeing such listings and, while we haven’t been able to replicate this, we did get confirmation from Microsoft that it’s testing this ad format.

“AdCenter is currently working on several ad product initiatives. Each initiative is at a different stage development and rollout stage,” a Microsoft spokesperson told me in a statement. “The ad treatment referenced in RKG’s blog post is from a prototype experimentation that aims to collect initial engagement data on ads with detailed product information.”

While Microsoft wouldn’t give us creative specs for the unit, it appears to be a small, square image that accompanies the headline, landing page URL and text in the ad. As of yet, there’s no product name.

Image courtesy RKG

Image courtesy RKG

Image courtesy RKG

Many marketers would likely be pleased by the introduction of such a unit at Microsoft Advertising/Bing since the Google PLAs have been very successful. RKG’s own recent research indicates that PLAs drove 15% of non-branded clicks on Google in the second quarter, but at a 23% lower CPC than comparable text ads.

Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Microsoft: Bing Ads | Top News


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  • Gabe Garcia

    I think the “ …at a 23% lower CPC than comparable text ads.” number is a bit skewed because there is not as much competition for PLA’s yet. When Google stops free product search listings for merchants, I expect the bid prices for PLA’s to go up. Why would they be priced any differently from standard text ads?

  • Anika Davis

    Good to know that Bing continue to innovate. This could mean more sales for businesses.

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