Back in 2013, Google rolled out the ability to compare date ranges in the AdWords interface. This was a very practical addition. Valuable insights can be gained as you compare current performance to previous periods, such as the preceding period, the same time last year, etc. I use the feature often.
Getting that same comparison from Bing was a painful process. I would have to generate and download a report from the current time period and a report from the time period I wanted to compare it to. I would then have to cut/paste them into the same Excel document and create calculated fields to show the % change and absolute change. In short, frustrating and inefficient. However, Bing just did us all a solid.
Bing Adds Compare Date Range Feature To Interface
Let’s get right to a visual and then I’ll walk through the options you have. Here is what your date range drop-down box now looks like:
First, they put a little “NEW!” notification next to your current date selection to draw your attention to this feature. However, you don’t see the bottom portion (highlighted in the red box) unless you move the Compare toggle to On. Once you do though, you have 3 options:
- Previous period – The name gives it away. If you’re looking at the last 7 days, it compares it to the 7 days before that. If you’re looking at yesterday it compares it to the day before. However, one nice little quirk is that if you’re looking at this month, which is likely incomplete, and compare to previous, it will match it to the same number of days in the previous period.
- Same period last year – This is based on exact date ranges and doesn’t account for day of week. If your business is very sensitive to day of week, you will need to consider this while doing your analysis. July could have had 5 Sat/Sun weekends this year and only 4 last year which could explain a variance.
- Custom – You’re in control here and this would be where you set a date range that matches up on days of the week with your current time window. Since most PPC practitioners are control freaks, this is important.
There you have it, compare date ranges in Bing is now live for everyone! Go out and use responsibly.