Google Shopping has seen a meteoric growth of 32% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2017, compared to 12% for text ads. Google Shopping Feed Optimization is the key to get the most out of your data. This product data feed forms the foundation of any successful Google Shopping campaign. If the foundation is weak, it will end up bringing the entire campaign down and wreck all your investment.
Here are the best practices for Google shopping feed optimization, you should follow for the optimal results.
- GTIN: The benefits
The GTIN aka Global Trade Item Number is a significant part of the optimization process. All resellers are required to have GTIN. It can include an item’s EAN (European Article Number), UPC (Universal Product Code), and ISBN (International Standard Book Number).So what role does GTIN play in Google shopping feed optimization?Google uses the GTIN to pull your product ad from the catalogue and places it into an auction with the other resellers of the same product. These ads set themselves up according to the attributes of the supplier’s catalogue and override any optimizations made in the feed.These ads are triggered during high funnel specific searches in the form of product-listing ad. Once a user clicks on that ad, he will be re-directed to a landing page consisting of all the variations of that particular product.
Moreover, GTINs also enable your product ad to get featured during Google searches with keywords like “Best” or “Top”. Customer reviews come into play as a deciding factor that determines the position of your ad. The more positive reviews you get, the higher is the probability to get featured at the top.
- Title Optimization
Product title optimization is one of the key steps for Google shopping campaign optimization. A research carried out by SearchEngineLand saw a CTR uplift of 18% on keyword-rich product titles as compared to other titles. The structure of the title can depend on the category of your business vertical. For example, you can structure your title in following ways if you are in Apparel and Electronics vertical:Ensure important keywords are included in your title. Test these keywords and make sure they mirror the product information from the website.
- Product Color
There was a time when it was recommended to use the colour in the feed that a user would search for instead of the actual colour. For example, Pomegranate colour would often be referred as “Dark Red” or “Red”. Navy Blue may also be referred as dark blue as shown in the image below.However, if you try this now, you will get disapproval from Google for mismatched landing page information. Google Crawlers scan (or crawl) through the landing page data, they match the colour attribute in the feed to the colour value provided on the landing page. They will detect the mismatch in the value resulting in instant disapproval.
- Image Optimization
Use the best images possible for the shopping feed. Use images that command attention and describe your product clearly.Consider an example below:The highlighted product image stands out from others, doesn’t it?So use the images that grab your audience’s attention and can communicate what you are selling. Because at the end, Images sell!
Promotional offers can entice customers and has the potential to exponentially increase the CTR (Click-Through-Rate) and lower your cost-per-conversion.A promotional ad will look something like this:Special Offer tag showcases the promotional offer of the product.To create promotions, go to the Promotions dashboard of your Merchant Center account. Then follow the steps below:
- Log in to your Merchant Center account
- Select Merchant Promotions from the left-hand navigation
- Click Promotions
- Click the plus icon
- Enter the promotion details and click Save
- Competitive Price
SearchEngineLand also performed another research to study the impact of price changes on Google Shopping optimization. This study included 700 products with over 100,000 impressions, price rise of average 43% on all products.With no changes in the bids, the impressions were reduced significantly by 70%. To maintain the traffic volume, increasing the bid price was a considerable option; however, Google now penalizes the increase in selling price.This showcases how Google Shopping Algorithm favours the products with lower prices and serves these product ads more efficiently.
- Map with Google Product Categories
Not all products require categories, except for few like books, clothing, etc.However, it is recommended that you map your product to the Google product categories to make your ads more relevant. Here are the few Google Shopping Tips that are relevant to Google product categories:
- Choose the most specific category that is closely relevant to the search term.
- Select the category that is based on product’s main function.
- Choose categories that were published after August 2011.
- Map with Reviews and Ratings
Graham Charlton, the Editor in Chief of E-consultancy, mentioned in one of his blogs that 61% of customers read online reviews before finalizing on purchase decision on e-commerce sites. He also stated that 88% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Seller ratings and product reviews are more important than ever to e-commerce websites now.There are few ways you can get customer feedback, but the two methods generally used are:
- Google Customer Reviews: A free-to-use program to collect post-purchase reviews on behalf of advertisers.
- Third-Party Review Sites: A set of sites approved by Google that offer free or paid services.
You might be not aware of ‘Google Customer Review’. Check out how you can use it via Merchant Center.
Google Shopping is one of the most effective platforms that can help you showcase your products in front of the right customers. We hope these 8 tips for Google Shopping Campaign Optimization helps you boost your sales and grow your business exponentially.
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