Whether you are already advertising or just planning to, you have probably heard about Google Shopping. It is the most popular advertising platform both among advertisers and shoppers. Did you know that there are about 3.5 billion searches on Google daily? This makes Google the biggest and most popular platform. Thus, advertising on Google can provide numerous benefits for any kind of business.

In this article, we are going to look at each aspect of Google Shopping. Moreover, this article will explain all the important things you need to know to start advertising on the Google Network!

What is Google Shopping?

Google Shopping, formerly known as Google Product Search, is a platform for online business. You can use it to promote your products or services across the Google Search network. Your ads can appear either above the search results or in the Shopping Tab. If your ad is not appearing among the first results, you might want to optimize it. In most cases, the first results are exclusively paid for to appear there.

Also, keep in mind that Shopping results reflect the best and closest match to a user’s search intent and keywords.

This is what the results on Search look like

results on search

And what the Shopping tab looks like

Shopping tab

Did you know that 85,3% of Google paid clicks are from Adwords and Google Shopping? This makes Google Shopping really popular. If you are not using it but your competition is, you are at a big disadvantage.

How does Google Shopping work?

As we already discussed before, when using Google Shopping, shoppers are browsing products or services from sellers and advertisers that picked the Google platform as their place for ads. The results are ranked by many different factors, such as optimization score, relevance, search terms and other Google Ads activity.

You may notice that some products are marked as “sponsored”. This means that the advertisers paid Google to promote their products on Google Shopping. This system works on CPC auction, which means that you as an advertiser pay for every click on your ad/product.

Shoppers can use different filters to find the product they are looking for, such as product category, price, or brand.

Moreover, it is also possible to show your product inventory on the Shopping Tab for free!

Why use Google Shopping?

If you are an owner of an e-shop or you offer any kind of services, you can use Shopping campaigns to promote your online and local products, boost visitors to your website or local store, and find better-qualified leads or achieve more sales.

Google Shopping campaigns are the most popular Ad Type that Google offers. Many people prefer to see the product before they click on the ad. Thus, Google Shopping is a perfect way of advertising as shoppers can see the product image straight away.

How to get started with Google Shopping

To get started, you’ll have to provide Google with your product data (in the form of a product data feed) in Merchant Center and create a campaign in Google Ads. Google can then use your campaign to create ads on Google and round the web where potential customers can see what you’re selling or promoting.

They are called Shopping ads because they are shown in a different, illustrative and user-friendly format. In contrast to a text ad, which displays text only, Shopping ads show users an image of your product, as well as a title, price, store name etc. These ads give shoppers the feeling that they know what they are clicking on, which can result in more sales or more qualified leads.

Shopping ads use your existing Merchant Center product data – not keywords – to determine how and where to show your ads. The merchandise data you submit through the Merchant Center contains details of the products you sell. Google uses these details once it matches a user’s search intent, ensuring that the foremost relevant products will be displayed.

You can manage your Shopping ads in Google Ads by clicking on Shopping campaigns, which is an easy way to organize and promote your Google Merchant Center product inventory within Google Ads.

You can show your products and services using 3 types of Shopping ads:

  • Product Shopping ads: These are created to support the merchandise data that you simply submit within the Merchant Center.

  • Showcase Shopping ads: You can create these ad types in Google Ads by grouping related products into one category. Therefore, people can compare several products you advertise and click on the one they like the most.

  • Local inventory ads: These ads use product data feed and the fact that they are provided from local inventory ads to interact with people on the Google Display Network, and thus help get you more traffic to your local stores.

Google Merchant Center

As we mentioned before, to start advertising on Google and use Shopping campaigns, you need to have your own Google Merchant Center. It can be easily created with a few clicks.

Product Data Feed

Google Shopping uses your product inventory to show ads. Google needs the images, the description and other tags to create tailored ads.

One of the things you must have is a Product Data Feed. This can be in different formats, such as XML, Google Docs or API.

Connect your Google Ads and Google Merchant account

If you want the best results and tracking, you need to connect your Google Ads and Google Merchant accounts. This can be done in settings: Simply send the request from your Merchant Center account to your Google Ads account.

The best way is to use the same GMAIL account for both Google Ads and Google Merchant. This will make the connection much faster and easier.

Creating Google Shopping campaigns

You can either use different tools to create Google Shopping campaigns or just set them up manually in your account.

You can choose between standard Shopping campaigns or Smart Shopping campaigns.

Smart Shopping uses automation for ad placement, targeting, and bidding, which is why it requires almost zero maintenance. This type of campaign can also test different image and text combinations to display the most relevant combination across the Google network.

Your ads will appear on all Google platforms:

  • Search network
  • Display network
  • YouTube
  • Gmail
smart shopping campaigns

What are the requirements to use Smart Shopping campaigns?

If you want to use Smart Shopping campaigns, you need to have:

  • Google Ads account
  • Google Merchant Center account
  • Conversion tracking
  • 25 conversions in the last 45 days from your existing shopping campaign
  • At least 100 active users on your remarketing lists

How to create bid strategy

You can use different bid strategies for your campaigns. Also, some of them are automated and some require your attention.

You can choose between two automatic bid settings

  • Maximize value: This bid setting allows you to focus on revenue from your campaign. This strategy helps you generate as much revenue as possible from your budget.

  • Target return on ad spend (ROAS): This bid option also focuses on revenue and conversion value, however, compared to maximizing value, you get better control of your budget.

It is recommended to try them both so you will see which results are better for your type of business.

Targeting and timing your campaign

Thanks to Google and their technology, you can set up your campaigns to target exclusively the audiences you want to. For example, if you are selling perfumes for women, you do not want to waste your budget and show your ads to kids under 15.

Also, if you notice that your campaigns are not performing well from 3 AM to 6 AM, you can simply turn them off and thus save some money.

You can also use Dynamic Remarketing which can help bring back people who visited your site without buying anything.

Creating Ad-Groups

Ad Group is a set of ads and keywords that are related to each other and clustered under one Ad Group. For example, if you are selling cosmetics for both men and women, you set two different campaigns. One is for men and one for women. These are called Ad Groups.

There are no limitations on the number of ads or keywords in an ad group

One of the most important things to understand about an ad group is that only the keywords that are included in a particular group can trigger ads in the same group.

Group ad groups by similar themes

One of the best-organized structures of ad groups is based on the sections or categories that appear on a website. For example, you sell desserts, beverages, and snacks on your website.

The keyword list in each ad group tells the system to show ads for these products only on websites that are related to them.

keyword list

Google Shopping actions

Buy on Google, formerly known as Google Shopping actions, is a platform where retailers of all sizes can sell their products directly on Google without any commission fees. You, as a retailer, can work with any third-party provider, such as PayPal for fast payments.

You can achieve lower cost with commission-free models, have a greater choice with third-party providers or simpler product listing processes.

If you are interested, you can read the official Google article about Google Shopping Actions.

Conclusion

Google Shopping can be really helpful for your business. One of the greatest things about Google Ads is that you can invest as much money as you want and you are not limited to any budget.

All you need to do is to set up your accounts correctly, create a campaign and start your new successful adventure.