Your Simplest Path To Passing The Bing Accreditation Exam

By Carrie Albright | @Albright_C | Associate Director of Services at Hanapin Marketing

Over the past few months, I have provided my guides to acing your Google Fundamentals, Search & Display Advanced Exams. Not to be overlooked, today we’ll work through the Bing Accreditation Exam and how to ensure that you pass it with ease!


But before we launch into what exactly it will take to become a Bing Ads Accredited Professional, I want to address why you’d want to take the Bing exam. Google’s presence in the SEM world is a force to be reckoned with and there’s no denying that a Google certification is worth the effort. But how does taking the Bing Ads exam give you a leg up on the competition?


From an agency standpoint, I can assure you that any accreditation (be it from Google, Bing, or a software platform like Marin) is good for you, personally and professionally. Knowing the ins and outs of the Bing Ads interface as well as the Bing Editor allows you to take more advantage of the features they offer, which leads to improved performance and optimizations. Bing is constantly creating news and fancy features for your account expansion and improvement. Joining this crew of knowledgeable AP’s, you push yourself into the upper echelon of PPC experts.


The member directory offered to Accredited Professionals allows you to be found by potential clients or employers, with your very own profile details such as language proficiency and industry expertise. You get to use a Bing Accredited Professional badge, and better than that- you will actually understand Bing better than others!


Learning is the best prize of all!


I can only assume I’ve officially got you hooked and you’re now ready to dive into the good stuff!




One of the best parts about the Bing Ads exam is the arsenal of study materials and tools for your preparation. While Bing previously used about a million short videos to walk you through its training program, now there is an easy-to-access library of exam material. The most important page for you to bookmark is the Course list. From here you’ll find links to virtually every syllable covered in the Bing Ads exam.


Nuts & Bolts


So let’s review what you need to know going into your exam:


  1. There are 100 questions on this exam.
  2. You may mark your answers for review at the end of the test. Bless you, Bing, for still allowing us over-thinkers to have this option.
  3. The passing score is 80%.
  4. The test covers the Bing Ads interface, the Bing Editor, and general PPC best-practices.


Now that you know what’s expected of you, let’s go over what you can expect from the test! Here we’ll cover the recurring themes or areas that may be a little less familiar to those with minimal experience managing a Bing account. This will allow you to study the most relevant material and perhaps realize the areas that will need more of your attention before taking the exam.


Beginner’s Material


As I’ve mentioned in previous test guides, you should encounter several questions that allow you to sigh with relief. They take their time with you in this exam, starting with extremely simple questions about match types, negative keywords, and when the advertiser incurs costs (Answer: When the ad is clicked, of course!). You should be able to breeze through the questions on why conversion tracking is valuable to an account as well as how you might target a specific user type (i.e. demographic and geo targeting).


Simple optimization scenarios may pop up regarding improving keywords with certain characteristics, but the Bing Ads training guide gives you very clear tips on what to do:


Example Bing Optimization


Enjoy this section of the test, and if you think you may be falling for a trick question, you can always mark it for review when the test concludes.


Slightly Heavier Content


Let’s move into the more interesting material, shall we? The most fun detail about the Bing Ads exam is that it tells you the overarching theme of the question, which coincidentally matches with the categories in the Course listing.


Bing Course Listing


Of the material contained in this library, the top area of focus should be:


i. Click Quality.


Although you probably have a pretty good idea of how click quality is monitored, Bing really wants to check. They want you to know they use real-time, pre- and post-click systems to keep your clicks as genuine as possible. And when you want to know how many invalid clicks you’re getting, sure you can invest in a 3rd party tracker but even better is the Bing-provided “Low Quality Clicks” column in your reports. Read over this page, just to keep the Bing-specific details crystal clear.


ii. Interface Specifics


For this series of questions, get familiar with the actual Bing Ads Interface layout – specifically the keyword research tool:


Keyword Research dropdown


Keyword sourcing


iii. Dynamic Ads


While this may feel like old hat at first, I’d strongly recommend reviewing how exactly you can insert dynamic content into your Bing ads. Whether it’s knowing what happens when your headline doesn’t comply with the character limit when it tries to insert keyword (Hint: It won’t show), or knowing how to effectively use the {param2} feature in your ads, definitely read up on the details. The brainiacs at Bing want to know you’re paying attention!


Newer Content


If you’ve always considered yourself one of the cooler kids when it comes to Bing’s most recent tools and features, this may not be shocking to you – but there are some changes that have cropped up over the past year or so.


i. Bid Adjustments


One of these is the increment with which you can implement bid adjustments. It used to be in gradients of 10 but now the time has come- you can adjust by 1%! Hallelu!


ii. The Bing Editor


Alright, so it’s still not available for Mac users but it has some new features that will make your life easier. As you prep for your exam, do not skimp on the Editor materials, specifically on the naming convention when it comes to “panes” and what content is included in each. Lost already? Get thee to the Overview page, STAT!


Odds & Ends


i. Differences Between Google & Bing


One of the things I’ve come to love and expect when bouncing between Google and Bing on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis is the slight difference hiding around each corner. The reporting features are a great example of this. You might consider yourself a master of all things PPC, but these questions are those that will trip you up in a moment of arrogance. Bing’s reports & features are highly developed to anticipate all the needs we might have. Before jumping into your test, be sure to review:


  • Negative Keyword Conflict Report
  • What reports fall into which reporting tab (Performance, Change History, Targeting, Campaign Analytics, and Billing & Budget)
  • The Import Campaigns tab
  • What the “delivery” columns tells you in Bing


These may seem like a motley crew, but once you’re in the test and you’re asked specifics about each of these features, I guarantee you’ll be glad you gave them a second look.


ii. Account Limitations


Every once in awhile, a PPC exam will ask for arbitrary digits that may or may not be hidden somewhere in your brain. For your sake and from my experience, I’ll give you the abbreviated versions:


  • You are limited to 255 location targets for each campaign
  • You are limited to 10k negative keywords for each ad group and each campaign
  • You may exclude up to 2k websites per ad group and per campaign
  • You may exclude up to 100 IP addresses per campaign


 iii. Editorial Guidelines & Review


Because each search engine has their own rules for how to engage in the advertising game, be sure to give a quick look to the 2 courses entitled “Editorial Guidelines” and “Editorial Review.” This will allow you to answer questions about international ads and whose rules to follow when creating your content.


As you’ve skimmed this list, I suspect most of it looks familiar. If not, I hope you have some solid bullet points to spend a bit more time on. Again, my biggest emphasis is on knowing how Bing is distinct from Google’s layout and language, as well as the different reporting and tools available. And when in doubt, mark it for review and move along to the next one!


If you find that you have a LOT that looks new or unfamiliar, spend some time reviewing the Bing material, checking out the e-book authored by Elizabeth Marsten, and rereading posts like this one that highlight what’s currently present on the exam.


Best of luck to all of you PPC Heroes and be sure to let us know your experiences!