2016: Looking back at Bing Ads in another year of “staggering growth” for search

Dave W. Shanahan

Bing Ads

In a guest post on Search Engine Land, Microsoft Search Evangelist Christi Olson shares her thoughts on the big impact Bing Ads had in 2016, representing another year of “staggering growth” for search. Bing Ads tracked many top 2016 trends, from top searched video games to the top searched tech trends.

Here are some of the top Bing Ads highlights from 2016:

Here is a chart Olson created showing the “2016’s Most Competitive Keyword Verticals” in Bing Ads.
Microsoft, Bing, Christi Olson

Olson found some interesting search trends in 2016 when she created her Bing Ads chart:

“The most competitive and expensive CPCs (Cost-per-click) are in lucrative industries like health care, education, insurance, legal and financial services. These industries tend to evaluate customers by lifetime value, not just the value of the revenue from a single transaction or lead generated. The long-term customer value model makes the higher CPCs worthwhile — for example, an online masters degree can cost between $30,000 and $120,000, depending on the school and the program; a drug rehabilitation program can cost upwards of $10,000 per stay; and the legal profession can have billing rates that reach $250/hour. With this in mind, the average ~$40 CPC doesn’t seem as crazy as if you were a retailer whose average order value ranges between $50 and $100.

The most competitive 100 keywords were also spread across the verticals, with 29 percent being in the Education vertical, 27 percent in the Legal vertical, 17 percent in Financial Services and 16 percent in the Health and Medical verticals. What you can’t see reflected in the charts and the graph is the depth of the tail represented in the keywords across each of the verticals.”

Do you use Bing Ads? Are there any trends from 2016 that surprised you? Let us know in the comments.