Though this article is applicable to small, medium, and large businesses that want to create campaigns using Google Shopping, I want to emphasize that Google Shopping Ads are especially useful for small businesses with small budgets. With Google Shopping Ads, your probability of getting a return on investment is high, due to the lower competition, whereas, ranking for text ads is almost impossible due to the large brands you’d be going up against.
What is a Google Shopping Ad Campaign?
Google shopping ad campaigns are one of the paid online advertising solutions offered by AdWords (Google), which allows you to bid on product based searches instead of keyword based searches. Google Shopping gives users a similar shopping experience to websites such as Amazon or H&M. With Google Shopping Campaigns, AdWords allows advertisers to serve ads with images, a name, pricing, shipping costs, promotional text, and other useful information to attract customers.
As you can see these shopping ads take up a lot of space which grab the attention of shoppers easily.
Setting Up a Google Shopping Ad Campaign
Before you can start and create Google Shopping ad campaigns, you will have to set up a merchant account at the Merchant Center page by signing up, which you can do so here. You will be asked to insert basic information such as your country of origin, name of your brand or store, and URL. You will have to verify that.URL since all products that appear must come from that domain URL.
Before creating a Merchant Center account, be sure to check if your website provides all the required information: contact information, return policy, and billing terms and conditions. On top of that, your website must have a working checkout process and be SSL protected.
After you have verified you have all this, you can upload your product data in the Merchant Center. Google Shopping created a great video on how to upload your product data with a data feed which you can view HERE. Creating this data feed is fairly easy and can be done in excel or Google Sheets. You need to add basic product information such as the ID, title, description, Google product category, product type, link, image link, condition, availability, and price of the product. Once created, you can upload the file to your Google Merchant Center account.
Now you’re going to have to link your Merchant Center Account to your AdWords account. You can do this by going to “Settings” in your Google Merchant Center Account, and choosing AdWords. You have to copy and paste your AdWords customer ID in the designated field and then you are ready to link your account. From here, you can start creating shopping campaigns in AdWords.
Pro tip: Know what else you can link up to Adwords? Check out How To Link a Google Analytics Property to an Adwords Account.
You can do this by selecting Campaigns from the upper bar, and by clicking the red button “+ Campaign”. From here, you have to choose “Shopping”, and fill in all the default settings like campaign name, country of sale, target locations, bid strategy, default bid, budget, delivery method, and schedule (start and finish date of the campaign). These are fairly easy settings that you can go through without issues. After this, you will have to take similar steps to create the ad groups.
Tips on How To Rank on Google Shopping Ads
- Use high-quality pictures to promote your products.
- If you have a lot of products but a limited budget, I advise you to create two or three campaigns, giving priority (and thus more budget) to your most profitable campaign.
- Provide valuable information to your customers, such as shipping costs, discounts, and up to date product information.
- Adjust your bid strategy by increasing your bid during peak-hours, or by decreasing your bid during times or days in the week in which your ad hasn’t been performing as well as it should.
- Use the bid-simulator integrated with AdWords to understand whether you should increase or decrease a bid. Google gives you this information for free to help you increase your ROI.
Do you have experience with Google Shopping? How would you compare Google Shopping Ads to another platform like Facebook Ads? Let me know in the comments below!