Online Shopping is no longer just the future, it’s the now. According to the most recent statistics, in the US alone, there were a total of 256 million digital buyers, and that number is expected to continue rising, with the projections for 2024 going as high as 278.33 million digital buyers.
One of the best ways to reach this audience as an e-retailer and drive sales is through Google Shopping Ads (also known as Google Product Listing Ads or PLAs).
This is according to Speqta, whose CEO, Fredrik Lindros, is a forerunner in the Google Shopping Ads space, widely known for the development of their new AI-based Ad Optimization tool, Bidbrain™. Lindros goes on to say that, “Google Shopping is the fastest-growing advertising channel, accounting for the majority of e-retailers sales.” The Speqta CEO further explained this with the following statistics: “Google Shopping accounts for 65% of all clicks on Google Search Ads, notable because Google has a market share over 70% of all US Ad spending, which in 2020 has a global turnover rate of over 150 billion US dollars.”
Learn more about how you can optimize your Google Product Listing Ads so that you can drive sales and accelerate your business’s growth below:
How Do Google Product Listing Ads Work?
Product Listing Ads (PLAs) are Google Search Ads for shopping that show off the name, image, pricing, etc. of your products at the very top of search engine results.
It uses the product information in your product feed for targeting, but, unfortunately, it does not allow manual keyword targeting. Although, this doesn’t really change the fact that PLAs are still a great way of promoting products to customers before they even know of your brand, because:
- Target consumers with high-intent queries.
- Draw more clicks with high-quality images, pricing details, and ratings.
- Can be optimized further (e.g. target-ROAS, maximize CPC, etc.)
Ultimately, PLAs are a must for all e-retailers looking to accelerate their sales and growth. Which is why we’ve included a couple of tips to help you along the way in the next section:
Drive Sales with Product Listing Ads
1. Identify Your Target Buyer
Before starting any marketing campaign, you should already be able to identify your target buyers. And the same thing goes with PLAs. So, cut back on your CoS (Cost of Sales) by making sure that you focus only on the buyers that will bring you the returns that you want. This is most effectively done by analysing your historical transaction data and finding what parameters are the ‘keys’ to those buyers.
2. Optimize Your Google Product Listing Feed
Before anything else, make sure that you have a strong foundation by optimizing your Google Product Listing Feed for maximizing the most conversions. You can do this by:
- Attracting buyers with detailed and accurate product titles.
- Matching the images attached to your products to the buyer’s intent.
- Focusing on providing helpful and important information on product descriptions.
- Using extensions to add more value to your product listing (e.g. high converting keywords you know of.)
And so on! The point of this tip is just to remind you that, if you want people to click on your PLAs and buy products from your e-commerce store, make sure that you’ve given them a good enough reason to do so by getting your product listing feed right.
Note, there are also more advanced product feed optimizers available for this purpose, like Bidbrain™, which will allow you to edge out your competitors in this area.
3. Segment Your Products Using More Custom Labels
By default, Google Shopping groups your entire inventory under one ad group with one product group called ‘All Products.’
They then recommend that you segment your products into smaller groups for more strategic bidding — based on seven distinct subdivision levels and an extra five custom label options to enhance said subdivisions.
Making use of this feature is not a bad idea altogether. And it is certainly a more dynamic way of bidding than just leaving your inventory as is. But, it should be noted that many still find it limiting, especially when it comes to the number of product levels and product category tree steps provided.
Fortunately, Bidbrain™ offers an opportunity for you to explore bidding on the next level — as it gives you the ability to make an infinite number of custom labels that you can set based on the parameters that you feel are the most relevant to getting you the most conversions. And, of course, it doesn’t enforce any of the product level limitations Google has either.
4. Add Negative Keywords to Your Campaigns
As mentioned above, PLAs cannot be used for keyword targeting. However, you can ‘target’ certain keywords by adding keyword exclusions to your campaign. These are called negative keywords, and you can use them to keep your PLAs from appearing to buyers who are searching for specific keywords that you think are unlikely to result in a sale.
The Bottom Line: Google Product Listing Ads
The main takeaway here is: Get to know how you differ against your competitors and use that data intelligently. And, of course, get to know the customers you are selling to as well, so that you can work on a system that will ensure that you reach them.
Of course, if you’re still lacking confidence in your ability to optimize your PLAs, you can always use an AI-based bidding tool like BidBrain™ to do most of the work for you — and, in the future, provide detailed insights that will help you plan for bigger and better campaigns!