Microsoft AdCenter Ad Labs Tools

After I pointed out Microsoft's AdCenter Labs yesterday WMW started a thread about some of the new tools. The selection of tools is diverse, interesting and useful enough to be well worth a review.

Content Categorization Engine:

This tool tells you ways your site may be categorized. Useful for:

  • helping you determine what types of webmasters might be interested in linking at your website

  • determining what type of affiliate ads you may want to consider using
  • seeing how well search engines understand what your site is about

Try Microsoft's Content Categorization Engine

Microsoft Content Categorization Engine Output.

Keyword Categorization Engine:

Similar to the content categorization engine, but for keywords. In addition to the uses described above this tool can also show you how well your page is aligned with your core keywords.
Try Microsoft's Keyword Categorization Engine

Microsoft Content Categorization Engine Output.

Demographics Prediction Tool:

Shows the age groups and gender of searchers for a particular query or visitors to a specific URL. Useful for:

  • showing the most common markets for a search query or domain.

  • showing you how well your site audience is aligned with your core keywords (for example, if a site lacks corporate bullshitspeakâ„¢, it would be unsurprising that the viewers of that site would be younger than the demographic averages for a field which is typically targeted toward older people who can't get enough corporate bullshitspeakâ„¢)
  • the most common groups of visitors and mindset to a site or for a query might be obvious, but some of the secondary and tertiary markets may be well less defined. this tool can help you find some of those other markets.

Try Microsoft's Demographics Prediction Tool

Microsoft Demographic Prediction Tool Output.

Seasonal Search Volume Forecast Tool:

Shows seasonal search spikes. It is like a hybrid between Google Trends and Google Suggest, but it will also show you relevant keyword phrases that have your keyword in the middle of them. This tool does not seem to have as much depth as Google Trends (ie: only a surprisingly few searches show results). They also seemed to have stripped out many gambling and porn related keywords. Unlike Google, MSN places search volume numbers on their trends. Useful for:

  • showing seasonal keyword trends

Try Microsoft's Search Forecast Tool

Microsoft Search Forecast Tool.

Keyword Search Funnel Tool:

Shows you the words people search for before or after they search for a specific search query. Useful for:

  • finding common spelling errors

  • finding related keywords that may not show up on most keyword tools

Try Microsoft's Keyword Funnel Tool

Microsoft Keyword Funnel Tool.

Detecting Online Commercial Intent Tool:

Shows you Microsoft's opinion of the probability of a query or a page being information, commercial-informational, or commercial-transactional in nature. Works well in conjunction with Yahoo! Mindset. Useful for:

  • seeing how commercial they think a term or page is, which is important because it is believed that some search engines, such as Google, have a heavy informational bias to their search results.

Try Microsoft's Online Commercial Intent Tool
Microsoft Online Commercial Intent Tool.

Local Ads:

Microsoft has a Seattle only local ad engine, a keyword mutation tool (to find misspelled keywords), an acronym resolution tool, a keyword group detection tool (like Google Sets), and a search result clustering tool.

I added links to these tools on my keyword research and niche discovery tool.

Published: June 1, 2006 by Aaron Wall in seo tools


July 17, 2007 - 7:44pm

How do I actualy estimate how much a keyword (CPC) will cost me ? I can't find the tool for it. Does anyone know the equivalent of Google's keyword price estimate tool for MS AdCenter ?

June 3, 2006 - 4:08am

It's seems to me like they wanted to offer tools that Adwords or Overture didn't provide. They definitely accomplished that, but their search data isn't the best.

Commercial intent and seasonal search volume seem to pretty useful toos. As for Firefox, Microsoft has and probably always will refuse to acknowledge their compeititors.

Why would they waste time and dollars designing tools for a broswer they don't want people using?

June 3, 2006 - 4:12am

>Why would they waste time and dollars designing tools for a broswer they don't want people using?

Because the idea of them controlling how people see everything is probably what will end up destroying Microsoft as a company.

June 4, 2006 - 6:51am

I guess there's a downside if you use firefox too much especialy using it with its competitor. :)

June 6, 2006 - 8:07am

If the basis of the data is not really realiable or comprehensive, then the tool usefulness is in question. As pointed out, it appears that the data is not very good. Still, the tool does offer alternatives to Adwords. However, to me it all seems like a marketing hype.

June 8, 2006 - 4:35am

i think firefox is complicating things too much, in such way that it's overrated. IE is more laidback I guess...

BTW, I should've bought this book ;)

June 8, 2006 - 2:00pm

I thing the gloves are off...msn is doing a complete set of tools for its client for both PPC related activities and organic initiatives comparable to what google labs is doing... but the tools presented above are awesome...

the search forecast tool will be very convenient and useful for various internet marketing campaigns

Backup Software
August 15, 2007 - 3:39pm

I enjoyed Demographics Prediction Tool the most. Most visitors looking for data storage are males... as predicted by myself as well.

backup software
August 15, 2007 - 4:06pm

I enjoyed Demographics Prediction Tool the most. Most visitors looking for data storage are males... as predicted by myself as well.

June 15, 2006 - 5:43pm

I think it would be much better for Google to have this kind of tools, given that they have a greater amount of authority over the search engine thing giving them more credible information to base their results on...but i find the seasonal search volume tool very useful...

June 1, 2006 - 3:08pm

It does not seem to work for Firefox :-(

June 1, 2006 - 4:01pm

Doesn't work for me in Firefox on a Mac.

June 1, 2006 - 9:21pm

It's nice of MSN to release these tools, but the data behind them is weak. For example the demographic tool said was 49% Men / 51 % Women. That's very wrong.

At this point, these are toys, not to be used for actual site decision, I'd think.

Disappointing, like most everything else search related from Microsoft. I can't get over how stuff doesn't work on Firefox either.

June 2, 2006 - 3:08am

Great Post on the AdCenter Demo Tools; I like how you explain how each tool would be useful.

June 2, 2006 - 8:58am

Doesn't work on Firefox, Safari, or Internet Explorer for Mac, or Firefox on Windows. Need to use IE on Microsoft OS. Other than that interesting tools.

June 22, 2012 - 10:30pm

Since this tool was taken down over a year ago, I got tired of waiting for a replacement and decided to code my own over at Its in BETA and you guys can try it out and let me know what you think with your feedback.


June 23, 2012 - 6:33am

...what signals you used to build the tool?

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