Potential Issues With Transitioning to Bing's Invoice Billing

If you’re a high-spender, it can be annoying, even frustrating, to have a multitude of charges on your account from Bing or AdWords because you’ll later have to reconcile all of those charges with your bank account. (Note: AdCenter billing threshold is initially set at $50 but will later increase – still for large advertisers that means being charged quite a few times a month.)  If you’re the person doing the books, you’d likely rather have one simple bill with the total charges.  Both AdCenter and Adwords offer invoice billing, so that advertisers can be charged at the end of the month for the sum of their expenses rather than multiple times throughout the month.  Unfortunately, it can be tricky to switch from one method of payment to another, so read on as we talk through the risks.

Current Accounts Wishing to Transition to Invoice Billing

If you currently have an account that utilizes threshold billing but want to switch over to invoice billing, read on.  Depending on the way your account was initially set up, there may be risks associated, as certain accounts will need to be re-created in order to correctly invoice.  If the account is re-created, you will lose all history and, of course, quality score.

To understand why a new account may need be created, we must first understand how an account is initially created.

When an account is created, Bing assigns 4 “roles” to the account: Parent, Using, Managing, and Billing.  Master accounts (company records) are linked to this account through these fields.  The Parent field is the end owner of the account. According to our rep, the Using field is generally the same as the Parent.  The Managing field is where a master user name from a different company master record, such as the Hanapin master, can be linked so that another company can use their super admin username to view the accounts.  The Billing field is for the company that is responsible for billing, this is usually the Parent or Managing company but can be another company altogether.

Once these fields are set, Bing cannot change them without recreating a new account.

In this instance, for example:

Parent: Client

Using: Client

Managing: Agency

Billing: Agency

If you wanted to switch to invoice billing where the client would be billed directly, a new account would need to be created.  Keep this in mind as you build accounts from the ground up because as you grow you may very well wish to switch to invoice billing and the best case scenario would be a seamless transition, without losing hard-earned data.

Setting Expectations For Re-Creating Accounts

Unfortunately, the debate between creating a new account and better managing billing or keeping the old account and all of it’s statistical glory can create a conflict of interests.  If the client manages the billing and an outside party manages the account – the client will likely want to switch to invoicing in order to better manage finances, while the outside party may not want the account to start fresh with no data.  As all agencies know, the customer is always right.  Feel free to throw vegetables at me for saying this but I’m going to say it anyway.  Do what the client wants because, in the end, it is their account and it’s just good business.  With that being said, if a new account will need to be created – be up front with the client.  Talk to them about what to expect and keep in close contact with the client and your rep, to ensure a smooth transition.  The last thing you want is to catch your client off guard with a downturn in stats that was outside of your control.  As always: set expectations.

On a positive note, if you do have to create a new account, Bing will gladly create a new account for you, by duplicating your current account.  Everything will be exactly the same, although it is likely that the account will take awhile to ramp up to the performance of the other account because the lack of data will put a hurtin’ on your quality score.

New Accounts

If you are currently setting up an account, you should review your billing options (threshold or invoice billing) and create the account as best suits your needs.  Note: you will not be able to set up invoice billing on your own behalf, an adCenter representative will need to do that for you. As I said earlier, if you think threshold billing is better suited to your needs: keep in mind that you may later want to switch to invoicing.  Be deliberate in the way that you set up your account, so that, should you ever decide to switch, you won’t need a new account.