Microsoft Advertising: ETA deprecation, auto-generated remarketing lists and Audience Network updates

Beginning June 30, 2022, responsive search ads (RSAs) will be the only search ad type that can be created or edited in standard search campaigns, Microsoft Advertising announced in its October product updates on Tuesday. The announcements also included reporting improvements for Microsoft Audience Ads with view-through conversions, In-market Audiences expansions, an open beta for auto-generated remarketing lists, several Microsoft Audience Network updates and expansions and more.

Sunsetting ETAs

As stated above, starting on June 30, 2022, advertisers will only be able to create or edit RSAs in standard search campaigns. Existing expanded text ads (ETAs) will continue to serve, but advertisers will not be able to edit or add them.

This move brings Microsoft Advertising in line with Google Ads, which announced in August that it would sunset ETAs on the same date (June 30, 2022).

Microsoft Audience Network updates and expansions

Feed improvements. Now, advertisers can filter their feed by ID and category, enter multiple values at once and exclude values. This may enable advertisers to more easily manage their feed-based campaigns and filter with more granularity.

Introducing CPM pricing. CPM pricing (cost-per-thousand impressions) is coming to standalone audience campaigns targeting users in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Australia, France, Germany, or New Zealand.

The CPM option in the Create campaign steps. Image: Microsoft Advertising.

If this feature isn’t available in your account yet, contact Microsoft Advertising’s support team or reach out to your account representative.

New metrics for view-through conversions. View-through conversions are conversions that customers make after seeing your ad, even though they did not click on your ad. Microsoft has added four new view-through conversion types:

  • View-through conversion rate: This is the number of view-through conversions divided by the number of impressions.
  • View-through conversion CPA: This is the total amount you have spent divided by the number of view-through conversions.
  • View-through conversion revenue: This is your conversion revenue, but only for view-through conversions.
  • View-through conversion ROAS: This is your view-through conversion revenue divided by your total ad spend.

18 new markets. The Microsoft Audience Network is expanding to include the following new markets: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Peru, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Venezuela.

Microsoft Audience Ads are already available in the U.S., Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, France and Germany.

In-market Audiences expansion

The regions that In-market Audiences are available in is also expanding to include, as an open beta: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela. Segments have been expanded as well; advertisers can view the list of In-market Audiences at Microsoft Advertising’s help center.

Auto-generated remarketing lists open beta

An auto-generated remarketing list notification. Image: Microsoft Advertising.

Microsoft Advertising is introducing a new product that can automatically generate remarketing lists for advertisers. The three types of auto-generated remarketing lists are:

  • All Visitors list: A list of users who visited the advertiser’s website in the past 30 days.
  • All Converters list: A list of users who converted within the past 180 days.
  • Smart Remarketing list: A list of users likely to convert, powered by Microsoft Advertising’s audience intelligence and designed to deliver a higher conversion rate.

Advertisers can use one, two or all three lists simultaneously, along with their existing remarketing and audience targeting lists. Universal Event Tracking and active conversion goals will need to be configured to leverage the All Converters and Smart Remarketing list options.

Competitive insights at the multi-account level

The platform also announced that competitive insights are now available at the multi-account level.

Why we care

The deprecation of ETAs aligns Microsoft Advertising with Google Ads, making it easier for advertisers to work across both platforms without having to account for any differences in available search ad types. As we stated when Google first made this announcement, this move means that advertisers will have less direct control over their accounts and will have to get accustomed to working with Google and Microsoft’s machine learning, if they haven’t already. We recommend testing your ETAs and RSAs to figure out what works best well before the June 30, 2022 deadline.

Feed improvements may make it easier to filter through your campaigns to find the products you want to promote exclude the ones you don’t. CPM pricing may be a useful option for advertisers that prioritize ad impressions, such as those seeking to increase their brand awareness. The new view-through conversion metrics may help advertisers track how ad impressions affect their conversion rate, CPA, revenue and/or ROAS.

And, auto-generated remarketing lists may provide advertisers with a quick option to expand their remarketing efforts to various users who’ve already interacted with their brand or are likely to convert.


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About The Author

George Nguyen is an editor for Search Engine Land, covering organic search, podcasting and e-commerce. His background is in journalism and content marketing. Prior to entering the industry, he worked as a radio personality, writer, podcast host and public school teacher.