Google Shopping Guide
Google Shopping is the most popular paid job search option for online shopping. Although Google Shopping campaigns also follow the Pay-Per-Click (PPC) model, it differs from traditional Google search campaigns. And the difference between the two can be intimidating for people starting Google Shopping campaigns.
In this blog, we will talk about all the details of Google Shopping campaigns, so that you as an online seller or advertiser get an excellent insight into the possibilities. And that after reading, you can carry out campaigns with confidence and will have immense success in your e-commerce activities.
What is Google Shopping?
As mentioned before, Google Shopping is comparable to traditional text ads to a limited extent.
Both are shown through Google ads, but the traffic generated through Google Shopping campaigns is more cost-effective and can be turned into sales to a large extent. What else?
Well, unlike search campaigns, Google Shopping campaigns focus on product data from the webshop. Google processes your product data ‘instead of keywords’ to display your product ad in response to your potential customers’ search queries.
Therefore, bidding should be done on the products, not on the keywords.
It is important to note for owners of webshops and advertisers that keywords should be used in product titles and product descriptions because you want your product to appear in relevant searches.
The product titles and descriptions are two predominant features of product data or product data feeds used by Google to link your ad to the closely related question. We will discuss the Google Shopping feed in more detail below.
What is bidding?
Bidding is commonly known as setting a fixed fee for a product group (individual products or a group of related products) that Google charges when a customer clicks on your product ad.
While the bidding amount in Shopping campaigns is much lower than in search campaigns, the way you want to set a bidding amount depends on the competitive level of products and the profit margins on your products.
We can divide this concept into two points:
As these are the products you need to bid on in order to run the store campaigns, it is a necessary step to notify Google of all the details of the products you want to sell.
The campaigns are created and managed in Google ads or Google Adwords, so sharing Google Shopping feed with a Google ad account is a prerequisite for running Shopping campaigns.
For more clarity on these points, you should know how Google Merchant Center and Google ads are important for running Google Shopping campaigns.
Before we go into this clarification, let’s first understand where and how the Shopping ads are displayed on Google.
When a customer enters a relevant search item, Google displays your shopping ad in the general query along with these pieces of information.
When searching for images, your ads will be displayed with the name of your website, product name and product image.
The Shopping tab displays shopping advertisements in an efficient and clear manner.
Google Merchant Center is the place where all information about products or product feeds is stored. Google wants accurate information about all the products for which you want to create product advertisements.
A Google Shopping feed is, therefore, a list of a number of products with certain characteristics that define these products.
What are these characteristics? Is there anything random that describes the products? Or is there a fixed format?
Since Google needs accurate product data to display your ads, you need to store and send feeds in a format indicated by Google. You should take into account a standard set of guidelines known as ‘Product Feed Specifications’ published by Google.
Before taking the next step, you will have to wait about 24-72 hours for Merchant Center approval for the feeds when you first send feeds to Google.
Merchant Center will reject the feeds if the required data is missing or invalid. In this case, you will need to modify the feed and resend it. If you violate any of Google’s policies, Google may even suspend your Merchant Center account. Make sure you read all the necessary guidelines in advance.
How do you maintain your product feed for a successful Shopping campaign?
If you have to advertise in several countries, there should be one product feed per country. Google Shopping campaigns are country-specific and therefore you need to create separate Shopping campaigns for each country you target.
Prices must be correctly stated in product feeds, especially when it comes to international currency. Google does not display product ads with incorrect price information.
Links to product pages must be active. If you have added dead pages or 404s in the feed, Google will not display your product ad.
Make sure you have clear images! These should be high-quality images without watermarks.
Google Ads: Create Google Shopping Campaigns
The most important step is to create an account on Google Ads and link it to your Merchant Center account. Why? This was our second point!
Google Shopping ads need to know what products or product groups you want to offer. Which products or product feeds you want to choose from the Merchant Center to run shopping campaigns on. The link or connection between the two is therefore necessary.
In Google Ads, you must first create a Shopping campaign and give it a name, here you must also select a specific country.
Google Ads is the place where you can set your budget, execute bids, manage your ad planning and perform optimization based on the performance insights.
The primary focus here is on setting up bids. Bidding is available as soon as you have created ad groups.
You as an online seller may sell a thousand products or maybe 200 products in your webshop. Your products should be organized accordingly among ad groups.
With only 200 products, it may be good to create only one ad group. However, with a larger product collection, it is better to create more ad groups that can be split by brand or category.
Bids for Google Shopping Campaigns
All products have a different bid budget, depending on different factors (product category, profit margins, etc.).
This means that you may or may not have to set the same bidding budget for your products or different budgets for different products.
With Google Shopping, you can set a bid amount for the product group ‘All products’ or set different bids by dividing ‘All products’ into smaller product groups.
How you organize your product groups has nothing to do with whether or not Google matches your product ad with a search query that a potential customer types in. The product group organization is only for setting up bids.
Setting up Google Analytics
Technically, Google Analytics is not required, but it really helps to check the results of your advertising campaigns, along with the performance of your webshop.
After setting up Google Analytics, you need to connect to the Google Shopping ads. By sharing performance data about these two, you can track your conversions.
Optimize Product Data
Do you know that product data can have a major impact on the position of your product advertisement? This means that good product information helps you increase the visibility of your ads while bad product information can hinder the position of your ads.
So while you’re concentrating on Google Shopping campaigns, it’s very important to spend time and effort optimizing your product data.
The product titles are the leading factor responsible for generating traffic to your online store. Your product titles should contain keywords and phrases that closely match the searches of your target group.
These keywords and phrases are also taken into account by Google to check the quality of the pages of your website. Also note that the recommended number of characters for product titles is 70 characters, while Google allows 150 characters. If product titles are 80% of the high ranking factor for product ads, product descriptions are important for the other 20%. Make them descriptive yet concise. Simply put, your descriptions should be as natural as users will ask Google for them in the form of a search query. If you have no idea how to write product descriptions, look at how other competing companies make them.