In June of this year, Microsoft (MSFT) went public with beta testing of their desktop editor for PPC marketing, proving that they are getting even more serious about competing in the Paid Search arena. Although they still have some vast distances to travel in order to compete on the field with Google, they have clearly taken some strategic first steps forward on this journey, which makes putting campaigns up on the adCenter platform much easier than the spreadsheet build previously required.

adCenter Desktop Beta

User feedback has been instrumental in the development of this PPC tool since the release of the alpha version and Microsoft is looking at some new features for future roll out of their desktop editor. According to a post I recently read on by an adCenter rep, some of these improvements include:

  • Enable being able to change the status of an adgroup from draft to active within Desktop. (Currently after uploading, one must go into adCenter to turn them live)
  • Find duplicate keywords and allow easy de-duplication.
  • Search based on criteria like clicks, impressions, cost, CTR, average position, etc.
  • Search for more than one keyword at a time
  • Search by keyword match time
  • Ability to download large accounts with tens of thousands of adgroups and massive keyword numbers.

We have found that the adCenter desktop tool is already invaluable in the deployment of our campaigns on the Microsoft platform and can't wait to be able to do more with it. I think it's only a matter of time before it catches up with the usability of AdWords Editor. In fact, even the file build-out for the Google AdWords Editor for campaign uploads can be just tweaked to use for the adCenter Desktop tool, saving a great deal of time (not to mention double work).

After speaking with one of our contacts at Microsoft, however, we discovered that we are among a select few in Canada who have been able to take advantage of the beta as there seems to be some difficulty for Canadians to partake in the beta program. If this is true, then its a shame because our Canada-centric marketing perspective can often be much different from how we market alongside our esteemed southern neighbours, and our budgets often demand even more tightly controlled use of PPC advertising (generally speaking). Microsoft adCenter pricing allows such an affordable alternative for clients who wish to take advantage of Pay Per Click advertising, but don't have the available marketing dollars to chase after decent ad placement in Google.

Personally, I'd LOVE to see Yahoo! also build a comparable/compatible desktop editing tool as well.

As always, comments are welcome.


Doug Gebhardt
aka The Doug

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20 Responses to “Microsoft adCenter Desktop Beta – Google AdWords Editor Junior”

  1. […] Go to the author's original blog: Microsoft adCenter Desktop Beta – Google AdWords Editor Junior […]

  2. I don't see why this can't just be a webapp. Seems to make a lot more sense as one!

  3. The Doug says:

    I think that part of the beauty of something like this is that you can work on it offline with your laptop if necessary, and then upload the work when you are absolutely comfortable with it. Sort of an "anti-live" preventative of making errors. (Like the carpenter adage of measure twice, cut once)

  4. […] Brad Linder wrote an interesting post today onHere's a quick excerptIn June of this year, Microsoft (MSFT) went public with beta testing of their desktop editor for PPC marketing, proving that they are getting even more serious about competing in the Paid Search arena. Although they still have some vast … […]

  5. I agree with The Doug – being able to work on a campaign online is a great option. Especially when you're talking about spending money, you want to be sure you're doing the right thing.

  6. […] Microsoft adCenter Desktop Beta – Google AdWords Editor Junior […]

  7. Utah SEO says:

    Nice, I'll check out the beta of MS Adcenter. Definitely impressed w/the Excel plugin.

  8. Mel Carson says:

    Great feedback The Doug! The tool is specifically designed to save you time and energy when managing your campaigns, so it's great to hear you're getting so much use out of even though it's still in Beta. On the International note – we are taking steps to start opening out the beta more broadly so keep an eye on our blog: for more on that when we're ready.

    Cheers Mel

  9. Sounds very interesting. Should be of great use when finally released.

  10. Headland says:

    This is a very interesting development indeed. It shows that Microsoft are willing to invest significantly into the PPC services, and we can expect more improvements to their search products in the future.

  11. The Doug says:

    Andrew, thanks for the nod of agreement. If there's one thing I've learned, it's check it again and again. Even after upload, make sure to have a check list of things to ensure transferred over.

  12. The Doug says:

    Utah SEO, I think you'll like it. It's not up to the ease of AdWords editor yet, but huge leaps and bounds have been made.

  13. The Doug says:

    Hey Mel! Thanks for popping in on this thread. I get excited when there are tools that help me to get things done more efficiently, so keep on going with the development of adCenter Desktop, and all of the other cool tools available.

  14. The Doug says:

    Truly, Comparison Shopping! Its already of great use, so can't wait to see what it is at release time.

  15. The Doug says:

    Headland, you are absolutely right. Microsoft IS willing to invest significantly into the PPC services. Recall it wasn't that long ago that they were out to buy Yahoo! and it was as much for the market share as anything else. I remember as software people when they took on Lotus 123, Borland Dbase, and WordPerfect, and the next thing you know, you have Microsoft Office as the most widely accepted professional software bundle. I'm thinking that they will approach the Paid Search arena with no less zeal.

  16. It is a good development. However it takes lots of time and effort for Microsoft to catch up in the PPC market.
    Rif Chia

  17. The Doug says:

    Yes, Singapore SEO. It takes a lot of time for any engine to catch up in this dominated market, but when the right stuff comes along, it seems to explode, so we'll see if they have what it takes to get there :)

  18. well i think a good exposure can sort out the things for Microsoft…. because its a renowned brand people will move to it if they know about it

  19. The Doug says:

    Hey zncustombuilding! They are renowned but in the operating system and software arena. Google really has the search arena nailed, so it will take more than just exposure, and I'm excited to see what they come up with to guide search traffic to their platform from the others.

  20. I would have much preferred this to be a web application, my laptop is dying :(