Google shopping ads are the links that a searcher sees when performing a product-based search. If products are listed in Google Shopping, the searcher will see them at places like ‘the top of the search results’ or ‘to the right of search results’ or in Google Shopping itself. In each of the first two options, there is a link to click which will open up Google Shopping (the third!) and allow the searcher to find products among the other retailers which sell the same item. The aim is to help connect buyers and sellers at the best price/conditions. Google’s aim is to make some money for facilitating this connection.
Google Shopping is powered by two platforms: AdWords and Google Merchant Center. Google Merchant Center is where your product feed lives. It’s the details of your products organized in a format Google likes. AdWords is where your actual shopping campaigns live and where you’ll set your budget, manage your bids, gain insights, and make optimizations based on performance. With Google Shopping, Google determines when your product listing ads show up. They consider your feed, your site, and your bids to determine what search queries
trigger your ads.
So, success with these ads comes down to 3 main google shopping SEO tips:
- Feed Creation and Optimization
- Monitoring and Optimization
FEED CREATION AND OPTIMIZATION
The data feed covers a lot of ground related to your product. Google crawls the feed and decides whether one of your products is relevant to the search query. Therefore, setting up the feed is important to earn clicks and make optimization of your inventory better. One could build the feed by manually entering the product information into a spreadsheet as per Google’s specifications’ or using an extension, plug-in app, or a service that pulls data from your website and formats it for you. Here, are some google shopping tips.
Here are the things that one needs to get right if you do not want your feed to be rejected –
- Product Title: It is arguably the most important element of your feed. Include the top keyword that you want to show up for most. Use color, brand, gender, model number, and size to differentiate the product. Try to put the most important information first in the title tag. If someone usually searches for ‘business cards’ you could name your product ‘Business Cards – 14 pt. High Gloss, Stand Size’ rather than ‘14 pt High Gloss Standard Size Business Cards’.
- Product Description: The product description is a crucial component of the feed. If you get this wrong, you could miss valuable impressions. Hence, do not write a story and be accurate. Try to incorporate keywords that you want your product to show up for.
- Google Product Category and Product Type: Google has created a fairly exhaustive list of categories/subcategories and type that your products might fall under. You don’t get to define your own product category or type; you have to pick from Google’s list of categories.
- Image: The image needs to be in the white background, completely visible with no text or watermark on it. It needs to be compelling in order to get clicks on it.
- Price: While the image will grab someone’s attention, it’s usually the price that has the most influence in making someone click. If your product is unique or has obvious advantages over the competition, having a higher price can actually help attract the right clicks.
- Shipping details and product conditions are two other factors that provide wholesome information about the product to the consumer.
Use smart bidding to set bids at the query level –
- Bid separately at the SKU level – Rather than lumping all your products together with the same bids, you should track each product separately. This allows you to see which products are top performers and which are not performing. Then, you can place unique bids based on each product’s
- Determine your Return on Ad Spend (ROA) – Your returns on ad spend, or ROA, is an important metric that you will want to be conscious of when finding the right bid. You can calculate ROA by dividing your revenue by the cost of the ads. Decide early on what your target ROAs are based on your margins.
- Google provides two options for helping you identify previous site visitors and customers who are looking for products on Google – remarketing lists for search ads (or RLSAs) and Customer Match – With RSLAs, you can use your remarketing lists to retarget consumers with your Google Shopping campaigns, placing unique bids for different searchers on your list. While Customer Match allows you to upload your email list to Google and bid on different people on this list. These tools can help you boost ROA as you are able to bid more on those previous customers who are more likely to convert.
- Discover your search impression share – Your search impression share is another helpful metric to use when determining your bid. With this metric, you can see how frequently each of your products is visible for relevant keywords. The higher this metric, the more visible your products are on Google.
MONITORING AND OPTIMIZATION
One of the great benefits of Google Shopping is the ability to see granular performance data and to make granular optimizations. Proper monitoring and optimization can take a good campaign and make it great. Basically, a product performance report will show you which products are selling and which are not. You can make analysis for products with no impressions, products with high impressions and low clicks or products with high clicks and no conversions and take actions similar to not be at any loss.
You can make use of promotional text and promotional feeds aka special offers to make a difference to your product listings. This type of promotion shows up under your Product listing ad as a “Special Offer” with a little price tag icon. Recently Google Think released a stat that searches including the word “best” have grown 80% in the last two years. Product ratings can make a substantial difference in the overall performance of your Shopping campaigns.
While getting the most from Google Shopping requires some time and attention to detail, it’s usually well worth the effort. Product Listing Ads work because they connect buyers and sellers in a very efficient way. This platform remains one of the most effective ways to reach new buyers even though the competition is on the rise. Google Shopping is the perfect platform to connect interested and open shoppers with your brand and product line.