Relevancy and Quality Policy: Bing’s New Rules

On August 7th, 2017, Bing Ads updated its Relevancy and Quality Policy, adding a new System Quality Policy to “enhance a positive user experience by delivering improved ad and network quality.”

The policy provides Bing Ads the ability to limit or remove keywords and/or ads from its platform that have not shown any performance over a significant period of time. In addition, advertisers subject to the policy may see additional restrictions within ‘sensitive categories,’ including: weapons, pharmaceuticals, gambling, adult, and trademark.

We were excited by Bing Ads’ announcement, particularly the additional protection it provides brand owners against irrelevant trademark use by third-party search advertisers. So, we decided to take a look to see what, if any, impact the policy change had on trademark bidding using the BrandVerity Paid Search Monitoring tool. We’ll talk about the results of that study later in the post.

Preston Holland
Dec 14, 2017

Trademark Policy for Lead Generators: Google's New Rules

Recently, Google updated their trademark guidelines to restrict the use of trademarks by lead generators. If you work with lead generation partners, they are no longer allowed to use your trademarks in paid search. And we believe this is a good thing.

Mason Smith
Nov 30, 2016

What's Next for Paid Search on Yahoo?

Paid search could be in for some big changes on Yahoo. After reaching a new search deal with Microsoft in April that afforded it more autonomy, Yahoo has now announced a separate deal with Google.

Oct 26, 2015

Google Drops the Hammer on Download Sites

Today, we’re happy to release the latest analysis of branded keywords in paid search, covering the second quarter of this year. You can download it here.

Aug 11, 2015

New AdWords URLs Won’t Curb Affiliate Hijacking

On July 1, Google officially migrated all accounts to Upgraded URLs. While Google’s descriptions of the new feature have primarily focused on the simplification of tracking templates and decrease in ad downtime, we were intrigued to see if the changes might spill over and affect affiliates’ ability to hijack paid search ads.

Jul 14, 2015

Microsoft Boots its Display Business and Takes Over AOL Search

Earlier this week, Microsoft announced they would be taking over AOL Search and shifting some parts of its advertising work onto both AOL and AppNexus, an online advertising company.

Jul 2, 2015

Major Changes to Bing-Yahoo Search Agreement

On April 16th, Bing and Yahoo announced a change to their longstanding search partnership. Search Engine Land posted an immediate follow-up to the announcement with useful details and analysis, and followed up with an update last week that provided more information.

Jennie Scholick
Apr 28, 2015

Google To Update Policy Regarding Software Download Ads

One of the major takeaways from both editions of BrandVerity’s Branded Keywords Report has been that Download & Toolbar sites, which bundle free versions of software with other products, such as toolbars, malware, or adware, are a major problem for software technology companies. In fact, in our study covering Q4 2014, nine of the top 10 advertisers on branded technology terms were Download sites.

Jennie Scholick
Mar 24, 2015

Display URLs Not Appearing on Yahoo and Bing


We've recently been finding some ads appearing on Yahoo and Bing without a Display URL. We first noticed this on Yahoo, where the ads were simply composed of a headline and description text (without any space for a Display URL to appear). In some more recent monitoring, the examples we've found on Bing have always included a lone dot in the Display URL field. In the Bing example on the right, you can see this dot followed a gap where the Display URL would normally be.

Dec 5, 2014

Google AdWords' Close Variant Keyword Policy and Trademark Compliance

As you may have seen, Google announced last Thursday that in late September they will be doing away with the option to disable close variant keyword matching on exact and phrase match keywords. In brief, marketers could previously target their ads to exact strings that people search for—or to particular phrases that people include in their searches. Now, the only option is to also target what Google calls “misspellings, singulars/plurals, acronyms, abbreviations, accents and stemmings,” when using exact and phrase match. TechCrunch offered a good overview of the change shortly after it was announced. Generally, the announcement has garnered some negative reactions among marketers as illustrated in this Marketing Land post, which highlights various responses to the new policy.

Jennie Scholick
Aug 20, 2014
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