What are my budget options?

Your budget is how much you want to spend per day on your ads. Making the right choice depends on your goals and how you want to monitor your spending. Do you want to choose your budget per campaign, or manage them all in one place?

Before you can submit your ad campaign, you need to set a campaign budget amount and select a budget type. Don't worry, you can change your budget amount and budget types at any time. Changes to your budget generally take effect within an hour or so.

With Microsoft Advertising, you only pay when someone clicks on one of your ads, so a good starting point is to think about your campaign budget in terms of clicks and cost per click (CPC). In other words, how many clicks are you hoping to get each day, and how much is each click worth to you?

Let's say that you want the ads in your campaign to get 50 clicks a day, and you decide that each is worth a maximum CPC of $.40. Multiply $.40 by 50, and a budget of $20 per day seems like a good idea. Keep in mind that you can change your budget at any time in your campaign's Settings tab.

Two budget types are available:

Budget Type Details
Daily - Standard

Microsoft Advertising will help you spend for optimized performance based on the products or services targeted by your campaign and availability of corresponding user searches during the day.

Shared - Standard

Multiple campaigns use a shared budget. Microsoft Advertising will help you spend for optimized performance based on the products or services targeted by your campaigns and availability of corresponding user searches during the day. Learn more at How do I share a budget across multiple campaigns?

Important

Your daily limit is a target; your actual spend might be higher or lower. Variations are caused by several factors, such as different traffic volumes in different days of the week, or automatic detection and refunding of fraud clicks that can give money back to a campaign within a few hours of the click. Microsoft Advertising anticipates and automatically compensates for the fluctuations, and usually keeps overspend to less than 100% above your daily limit.


What budget types mean for multiple campaigns

The right budget type for you depends on what's important to you. Both budget types offer similar benefits, yet the Shared Budget is more flexible because Microsoft Advertising automatically adjusts how your money is spent across multiple campaigns. Check out the benefits of both. You can:

  • Set the maximum amount that you want to spend each day.
  • Take advantage of changing market conditions, such as a holiday season or special promotion.
  • Make frequent changes to budgets throughout the month.
  • Monitor your budget daily.
  • Have impressions distributed as evenly as appropriate throughout the day.

If you still can’t decide which budget type is right for you, try each one and watch how your ads perform. Remember, you can switch budget types at any time. Also, be sure that you understand what happens if you reach your budget limit (for more details, see What if I reach my daily budget limit?).

To learn more about shared budgets, see How do I share a budget across multiple campaigns?


How your budget is calculated and spent

Your daily budget setting is only a target, so your actual spend might be higher or lower. This is because, regardless of the budget type you choose, Microsoft Advertising always calculates a monthly budget and then the actual budget limit is calculated for an entire month. Daily budget types simply help you make sure that your budget is spread out over an entire month, and not used up in the first day.

The calculation to convert your daily budget to a monthly budget is:

monthly budget = daily budget x days in month

If you happen to change your daily budget mid-month, then your current monthly limit is calculated as your spend so far that month, plus the daily budget amount multiplied by the number of days remaining in the month. Like this:

monthly budget = Spend-to-date + (daily budget x days remaining)

In the unlikely event that your campaign’s spend goes over your monthly limit, Microsoft Advertising will refund the overspend at the end of the month.


Understand performance estimates

When you set your budget while creating a campaign, you'll see estimated performance metrics, based on your keywords and settings:

Estimated monthly clicks

What it is: This is the number of times customers are expected to click your ads every month, given your keywords and your targeting and budget settings.

Why it's important: Clicks are what you pay for. They typically include a customer clicking an ad on a search results page or on a website on the search network. Clicks can also come from other sources, such as spiders, robots, and test servers.

Tip: You pay for clicks on standard-quality clicks, not on low-quality or invalid clicks.

Get more info: Monitoring clicks: Telling the good from the bad

Estimated monthly impressions

What it is: This is the number of times customers are expected to see your ads every month, given your keywords and your targeting and budget settings.

Why it's important: Regardless of whether you are driving customers to your website, tracking conversions, or just trying to get your message out, you'll want to track the number of times your ad is shown.

Estimated monthly spend

What it is: This is the estimated total amount you will spend on this ad group every month, given your keywords and your targeting and budget settings.

Get more info: What if I reach my budget limit?

Estimated average position

What it is: Estimated average position is the location that ads are likely to appear on the search results page. Although it varies, positions 1-4 appear at the top of the search results page and positions 5-10 appear in other locations (for example, the bottom or the sidebar).

Why it's important: Ads that are on the first search results page tend to receive more clicks.

Get more info: Get my ad to the top of the search results page


Change your budget type

  1. From the main menu on the left, select All campaigns.
  2. From the page menu, select Campaigns.
  3. In the table, select the name of the campaign you want to edit.
  4. From the page menu, select Settings.
  5. Under Campaign budget, select Daily budget options.
  6. Select the appropriate budget type.
  7. Save your changes.

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