If you’re not familiar with Google Shopping ads, they are product listing ads (PLAs) that allow retailers to promote products. This type of ad is well-suited for e-commerce websites as they showcase products with extensive detail and price in the area above organic search results, as well as in a dedicated “Shopping” tab in Google search and have thus become an essential advertising channel for e-commerce retailers.
Google Shopping ads are fairly new in South Africa when compared to search and display ads, however, they are proliferating as more and more businesses see their value as a powerful channel to increase sales.
For those less familiar with Google Shopping ads, I’ve put together a quick list of four simple tips to consider when running a campaign that will help improve performance and work towards increasing ROI over time.
Optimize your Site & Your Product Feed
To create a Shopping ad, one needs to create a product feed that includes information about products, including a title, description, image and several other details that identify the product within the inventory. There are different ways to create a feed, and the most popular formats include a manual feed in Google Sheets, an RSS feed that updates automatically or using a 3rd party app to generate a product feed.
When it comes to optimising, it’s important that the information in the feed about the product provides as much detail as possible like the material the product is made of, colour, size, and other identifying features. If you’re using a 3rd party application to help generate the feed, these often use data directly from your website, so ensuring that the product landing page is well-optimised is of utmost importance.
In general, a well-optimised landing page will improve the quality of the Shopping ad which will have a positive impact on campaign performance; but it’s also just best practice to ensure that there’s detailed and well-optimised content about your product on your website as this improves visibility and sales regardless of your channel.
Make it Pop – High Quality, Compelling Images Work
For many users seeing your Shopping ads, the image is one of the first things they notice, so it’s important to make sure that product images are high quality and show the product clearly. Google has several guidelines around this and may disapprove Shopping ads where images are heavily edited, contain watermarks and overlays, obscure the product, are irrelevant to the product, or are not family-friendly.
As a retailer, if you have high-quality images from a supplier, you should use these as this will save you time and resources. Alternatively, it’s worth investing in quality, professional product photography to ensure that your products are being showcased in the best possible way online.
Segment Your Campaign
Similar to how we split up ad groups for a search campaign, a Shopping campaign can also be split up. Segmenting products by brand or category provides an opportunity to bid more effectively on specific products depending on the demand and competition for a particular subset of products.
By segmenting products, you’ll be able to determine which ones require more budget allocated to them, and you’ll be able to analyse data on your products in more detail, making it easier to spot new opportunities to increase traffic, sales and ROI.
Price is Important
If there’s one last point I can make, it’s this: You can have all your ducks in a row, including a well-optimised feed and website, a smooth check-out process, high-quality images, beautifully written descriptions about your product, a well-segmented Shopping campaign, and a great product, but if your price is not competitive in a way that consumers feel they are deriving value from your offering, you’re unlikely to make sales.
This goes back to basic economics in the sense that consumers, whether shopping online or offline are always looking to derive value from their purchases. Because of the way Shopping ads are displayed to users, comparison shopping is a big part of the process as your ads will be appearing right next to your competitors. While quality and accessibility are both important factors to consider with regards to your production and distribution channels, the price will always be one of the biggest factors that will determine whether a user makes a purchase or not. Ensure that your products are priced fairly in relation to the market, and you’ll be well on your way to increasing your sales.
If you’re looking to run a quality Google Shopping Ads campaign for your e-commerce store, get in touch with Let’s Go Media today to make sure you’re getting the most out of your campaign.