What is Google Shopping?
When you search for a product on Google, you may have noticed that, together with the traditional results, mini-cards are produced on the right side or on top in relation to what you searched for. This result is done by Google Shopping. So what is Google Shopping exactly?
“Google Shopping is a service that allows users to browse and compare the prices of products that merchants offer via Google paid advertisements. Buyers can browse products directly in the Google shopping section, but they also view them at the top of organic search results in the form of ads grouped in Product Listing Ads (PLA).”
This can be utilized as a different medium for advertising and it can be incredibly effective. Google Shopping is made for eCommerce websites, so you may actually get better results from this than from AdWords or even Facebook Ads for that matter.
How does Google Shopping Work?
Google Shopping shows you the product photo, the name, the price and the retailer in a graphic very similar to a product card. If the user clicks on an ad they are redirected directly to the eCommerce website to buy the product online. This is a form of paid advertising that can be very effective for shopping online.
Try it out yourself, and search Google for something like “white sneakers” and you should see exactly what Google Shopping is depending on your location and search term.
As you can see in the image above, these ads include a description of the product, an image, the price, and the product rating. These PLAs very easily capture the attention of users who have searched for that particular category of products and therefore have a great chance of attracting quality clicks, ie that they can convert into sales.
The searcher can already see the type of product they’re interested in, the price, and the name of the retailer, so their click on the ad indicates, most of the time, the intention to make a purchase.
Google Shopping results, unlike AdWords advertising, are specifically designed to promote eCommerce websites and product listings. This service takes care of intercepting users already willing to purchase and therefore allows a very accurate target profiling, which could make this method of paid advertising extremely effective for you.
An important fact is that Google plays the role of a price comparator; it does not deal with direct sales but only with advertising while showing multiple products alongside yours. So, when someone searches for “white sneakers” and you have a Google Shopping ad on it, the user will be able to see competitors white sneakers as well.
With Product Listing Ads, however, you do not involve specific keywords you have identified. It’s all about your products, and then Google will decide what the relevant keywords are based on your data feeds.
The information of the latter will include much of the product description already present on your site, but will then be translated into a format that Google can read and process. Always keep in mind, however, that you can indicate some terms for which you do not want your articles to appear (negative or undesirable keyword).
How are Google Product Ads Shown?
When a user types one or more words on the search engine, Google draws the most suitable products from all the advertisers and shows them based on several factors:
Cost per Click
CPC depends on how much you are willing to pay when a user clicks on your product, which is why Shopping works more or less like an auction: if your competitor bids $1 and you bid $2 your ad would take preference over them. The CPC allows you to pay only if the potential customer clicks on the Shopping mini-product card.
Sometimes, there will be other companies using Google shopping ads as well as you. Obviously, this means you will have some competition and their products may be shown alongside yours. Think of it as an opportunity to show people why your products are better.
Contrary to AdWords, it is not possible to purchase precise keywords on Google Shopping but to be able to appear in the results, it is necessary to optimize the descriptive texts and the titles of the products with an SEO strategy.
The visibility of the products also depends on the completeness of the information transcribed in the product sheet, the presence of the photograph and the general quality of the feed.
How to Make Google Shopping Ads
To start selling and add products to Google Shopping, you need to link your AdWords account to the Merchant Center platform. While AdWords and Shopping are connected, they perform two different actions: Google AdWords can promote text-based ads, while Google Shopping is used specifically to show products and increase eCommerce conversions. After this, you can then create a Google shopping campaign.
You should include these elements:
. A quality photo that emphasizes the article on sale and invites the user to click on the card
. The correct and updated price that’s also on your website
. ID or the identification code of the product
. Product availability
. Options (color and size)
. A description designed for SEO, using the keywords most searched by users for that product
All this data must be relayed via a Google Shopping Feed. The file must be updated periodically and contain the same information that the user will find on the eCommerce website.
Google Shopping feeds are compatible with both Shopify and WooCommerce, which is great because a lot of eCommerce websites use one of these platforms. These platforms have even created documentation for you to follow if you want to integrate this on your store. Here is how to set up Google Shopping with Shopify and Google Shopping with WooCommerce.
You can find a Google shopping feed template here and some information about Google product categories here.
Tips for Google Shopping Ads
In order to get the best results possible out of your Google Shopping campaign, there are a few things you should pay attention to.
Although it may seem obvious, make sure that the information provided by your article’s data feeds matches those of your landing page.
Optimize Your Google Shopping Feeds
As we said, these feeds allow Google to determine where your PLAs should appear among search results and it is, therefore, crucial that they be detailed and accurate. Get familiar with Google product feed specifications. If you do not understand the rules behind Google Shopping mechanisms, it will be difficult for you to be competitive.
Monitor The Performance
Take advantage of the opportunity to indicate “negative” keywords to make sure that your products appear only among the most relevant research results. Also, be careful to limit the exposure of products that have very low performance – in other words that convert little – or that have a very high sales cost.
On the contrary, evaluate to raise the budget for products that will record effective performances; you can also differentiate the cost and frequency of Ad depending on the day or time.
Take Advantage of Product Groups
ROAS stands for Return On Ad Spend and is basically the return on investment of your campaign on Google Shopping.
Essentially, the cost of your bid tells Google what value you’re giving to your category of articles; by determining a specific for a particular product segment you can organize your campaign on Google Shopping in more detail. Products can be grouped based on any attribute such as brand, ID, label or category of Google products.
So, is Google Shopping worth it?
Google Shopping Ads could do wonders for your online store.
You can utilize this platform to drive targeted traffic to your website and it could serve as a better medium than other platforms such as AdWords or Facebook Ads. It is important to test everything, however. You need to test multiple products and use different descriptions to see which ones convert the best.
There could be something that seems so minor and trivial to you but for the potential buyer looking at your ad, it could be a deciding factor. This is why you need to make changes to the ads that aren’t performing well and scale up the promotion of the ads that are. Overall, Google Shopping Ads could be exactly what you need to drive targeted traffic and make sales.