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6 Questions you Need to Ask to Make the Most of Your Google Shopping Campaigns

by | Oct 14, 2015 | Google Shopping | 0 comments

Why on Earth Google Shopping? Simple: because it works. Unquestionably, Google Shopping is a powerful channel for e-commerce websites. But, are you using this well-oiled machine correctly?

Just because you don’t have a bloodbath of disapproved products, it does not mean all is well.

If you are letting your campaign run on autopilot after your setup process has been completed; you need to rethink your strategy.

Below you will find some questions to ask yourself and tips on how to audit your Google Shopping campaign so that you ensure you are measuring performance correctly and implement best practices.

1) Do I Have Product Types and Custom Labels?

Yes, they are not required fields, but using your type of segmenting can go a long way. You should be an overachiever and get this one done. You can use product types to provide your classification next to Google’s. Who doesn’t want this kind of freedom? Custom labels, on the other hand, are for extra categories such as best sellers, seasonal products, promotions or for margins, you name it.

Plus, by implementing these, you allow for product tiered bid strategies based on your concept of how your products can be classified. After all, like almost everything else in AdWords, there’s no one way of organizing your shopping campaign. Just take your campaign set up and optimizations to the next level.

2) How are You Utilizing Your Campaign Priority Settings?

Campaign priority settings allow you to segment your products in multiple campaigns and ensure you still have control over which ones have higher priority based on what’s most important to you and your business.

There are two different scenarios in which this setting can be very useful:

Scenario 1

You want to have maximum control over all your products, yet you still want exposure for every single product in your inventory. So, you decide to create two different campaigns.

You create one in which you include all products (a catch them all campaign), and one in which you segment products by product type, manufacturer, etc.

Thanks to campaign priority settings you can now set all your products campaign’s priority settings to low and your segmented products campaign’s to medium. You can now move on with your life not having to worry about going into each campaign and adjusting bids to filter traffic correctly.

Scenario 2

When you have CPA and overall conversion goals that are different for branded and non-branded products, campaign priority settings will also be your best friend. Create two campaigns and include branded negative keyword variations in your nonbrand campaign, while setting priority settings to high. And voila, now you have two separate campaigns for branded and non-branded conversions.

3) Am I Only Using an “All Products” Product Group?

If you are, I’m not judging. Well, maybe a little. There are so many other ways in which you can segment your campaign that allow you to have product-specific bids. You can use the brand, product type, custom labels, you name it. Anything else is more specific than having no segmentation and one bid across all products.

Separate ad groups whenever you want to have different negatives, mobile bid adjustments, and promotional messages for your product groups.

Don’t get me wrong, I highly recommend you having an all products ad group with lower bids so that you can have exposure to products that you can use as future product groups. All products can serve as a method of identifying additional product targets to break out into individual ad groups. In this case, the dimensions tab will be your best friend.

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4) Am I Adjusting Bid Strategies Based on Product-Specific CTR, Conversions, Traffic?

In a shopping campaign, the only cool thing about not being able to bid on an actual keyword is that you get to bid on the product you are advertising. That being said, there are multiple bidding strategies you can implement to improve performance, here are some:

  • If you have low CTR, it is very likely your product has a low position, so you can test out increasing bids for these.
  • If your product group is performing, and you want more volume, increase bids cautiously.
  • Set bids on “everything else on all products” lower than the specifically named products. This will ensure your main traffic goes to segmented ad groups.
  • During peak seasons, increase bids for your money makers to get maximum exposure.
  • Use location bid adjustments to identify profitable regions and increase their bids, as well as non-profitable regions and decrease the bids on these.
  • In the same way, high-traffic/low-profit products’ bids can also be adjusted to decrease traffic for unprofitable products.

Pro Tip: As your shopping campaign matures, consider adding your bestsellers into their specific campaign or ad group, this will give you a closer look into your money makers.

5) Am I Constantly Babysitting and Optimizing Titles and Descriptions?

It’s easy to get accustomed to optimizing by adding keywords, negative keywords and adjusting bids, don’t fail to do this in your Shopping campaign. It’s under your control. The attributes that impact your visibility and CTR substantially are titles and descriptions.

Look at search queries in your campaign’s dimensions and find converting trends you can use to optimize your titles. If “golden cactus” is what people with serious buying intentions use when buying your product, then test out a variation of this in your title, or include it in your description where it makes sense.

6) Do I Constantly Run Query Reports to Exclude Irrelevant Traffic?

Don’t use it only to exclude irrelevant traffic but also to identify poor performing queries that are significantly underperforming.

Search query reports can also help you find keywords you can add to your regular search campaign. If you see a high volume search query that performs well, make sure to include it as a keyword in your search campaign and test it out.

There is Life Beyond Shopping Campaigns

Thankfully, you can use additional shopping (related) options available for your campaigns:

Dynamic Remarketing

My personal favorite (er, right after shopping campaigns). This is a type of campaign that allows you to customize remarketing to show specific products users were browsing for. So in that way, you don’t have to see a general nail polish ad if you were browsing for tweezers on a given beauty products website.

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RLSA

This allows you to bid differently for people who have already visited your site. Usually, you want to bid higher for these.

Merchant Promotions

These highlight the benefit of purchasing from your store at the moment consumers decide where to shop.

Product Ratings

These give you important information for shoppers making purchase decisions and help you drive more qualified traffic to your site. How cool will you seem when you show ratings next to a sea of regular product ads?

Local Inventory Ads

Make the inventory in your local stores accessible to people shopping online too!

Google Trusted Stores

Being trusted by Google is legit. Being a Google Trusted Store reassures shoppers that you’ll provide a great customer experience. Does it get better? Why yes, it’s free!

Go Shopping

As a retailer, Google shopping is one of the most important components to getting things right with paid search. Not only does it work, but it’s getting better. You know Google, always coming up with new ways to make your experience with paid search more useful and functional.

Now that we have identified some areas of opportunities for your shopping campaign, you can go shopping!

Author: Nadesha Thomas

Nadesha ThomasNadesha Thomas is a talented PPC Supervisor at White Shark Media. She has a Marketing and Management degree from the University of the Ozarks. Her main passion is traveling. As a typical Caribbean girl, her happy place is the beach. She's a coffee enthusiast, a photography lover, and an avid reader.

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