How We Grew An Ecommerce Brand’s Sales By 124.90% In 3 Months
Yoru Marketing is a DTC Google Ads agency and this case study is based on the results we achieved for a brand in the ‘Industrial & Scientific’ niche selling 3D printers, engravers, & more.
It was a hot day in Southern California when I noticed an eCommerce brand currently doing $100k+ per month scheduled a call with our agency.
I wasn’t in the mood to talk with dishonest eCommerce store owners on that specific day as the previous week had been spent talking with those who had ‘mistakenly’ chosen the wrong options when filling out our form.
And it was one of those sunny days where every little thing managed to crawl under your skin.
After speaking with the store owner, I came to realize that during the prime year of 2020 and 2021, this eCommerce brand had managed to cross $5.6M in sales during those two years – a large feat.
But unfortunately, during the coming year, this had dropped significantly due to various different economic and global conditions. Their main goal was to get as close as possible to the previous years with Google ads (their biggest traffic source).
After a bit of an initial analysis, it came to my attention that there was more going on under the scenes than just what the CEO was telling us.
It was time for a complete digging.
Our analysis opened a whole new realm of possibilities for this 3D printer brand.
And this was mainly because of how much they were leaving on the table due to an ‘incomplete’ setup.
A setup which mainly lacked:
- Proper conversion tracking
- Proper product phases implementation
- Proper scaling strategies
And as a result, they had done only roughly $1.5m in half a year’s worth of time instead of the $2m+ they were accustomed to.
After a complete analysis of this brand, we had to begin developing a strategy.
The current strategy that had been implemented by the previous team was – well, not really a strategy.
Initially, there were four campaigns running in total: two performance max campaigns and two search campaigns.
The search campaigns were extremely basic and catering mostly to warm and hot audiences. The real problem was with the performance max campaigns.
Most eCom store owners simply launch them without a proper strategic approach and as a result, the products end up competing with each other. Such was the situation here as well.
Due to the high ticket nature of this brand, we decided to go with the TPS strategy – testing, profitability and scaling.
This unique strategy created by our CEO, Shri Kanase, essentially outlines the core fundamentals of proper product testing.
It not only gives the product ample room to fully get tested, but it also helps separate them based on how well they perform.
A perfect strategy to warm up the Google ads algorithm.
And this brings us to scaling.
The reality is, every ad account is different. A scaling strategy that works for one may completely flunk in another. And with this ad account, the current scaling tactics were clearly not working.
Instead of creating a scaling strategy right from the beginning, we decided to hold off with this account until we had evidence the testing phase was properly running.
However, while the testing phase was ongoing, we decided to implement the perfect backend strategy that would help the campaigns perform better.
During my initial analysis, I had noticed the products had no reviews showing up on the Google Merchant Center and the SEO was pretty much nonexistent for the products.
I had a team member work on reconfiguring all of the SEO and getting it properly set up while we got the reviews approved in the backend.
While many of these things may seem completely irrelevant to the overall Google ads campaign performance, they ended up having a pretty big impact as we would find out later.
Applying The TPS Strategy To Align Products
Any proper Google ads strategy should start off with aligning the products with their respective phases.
This means doing a deep analysis of the current products and how they’ve performed in the last 30 days.
This gives you a deeper insight into:
- What products are working the best (and why)
- Where your business is lacking the most
- What part of the business can scale now
But it’s one thing to just get a general idea of what’s going on with the account and another to use this data to further scale.
When trying to apply the phases for the current products, we had to understand exactly what the account needed at that given time period.
From what we saw, it was clear that there had been products running profitably in the past. But it was even more clear that there were many more products which had 0 impressions and clicks – a clear indicator of a failed product testing strategy.
The first strategy was to focus on a campaign that would include all these untested products and give them ample room to spend budget without restrictions.
This is essentially where the ‘T’ of the TPS strategy comes into play.
Our testing strategy was very straightforward with this brand. What we were dealing with was:
- An account with lots of data
- An account with a high AOV
- An account with a stable search volume
When an account meets all of these three metrics, it’s pretty much a no brainer in terms of approach. The best way to use all this data is to launch a smart bidding based campaign, even for testing purposes.
In this case, we simply launched a Performance Max campaign that would be focused on getting as much cold traffic as possible. But here’s the twist:
We launched this campaign without any assets (a strategy the account had never seen before) to force the campaign to operate for shopping only.
Many eCommerce store owners fail to do this properly and as a result, end up wasting valuable ad spend on irrelevant search networks that have very low conversion rates.
Keep in mind that Google ads is a business as well – it wants as much of your ad spend as quickly as possible to profit.
With the testing campaign churning, we bought precious time to focus on the most important part of the funnel: testing.
A/B Testing Based On Results
It’s one thing to launch the campaigns and it’s another to actually practice A/B testing based on results.
After a few days of running the campaign, we began to see some interesting data coming in.
One of the first things I saw was that the campaign began testing products at a 8.71x ROAS. This was a big feat on its own simply because we were aiming for this kind of ROAS for the profitability and scaling campaigns.
In addition, the more surprising thing with this campaign was the products which had originally been sitting at 0 impressions were the ones moving the most.
Such is the power of the TPS strategy.
But it should never end there. A proper TPS strategy is followed by a proper A/B testing strategy.
In terms of A/B testing, we approach the process in a very systematic way. It starts at the top of the funnel – with the product image, title, and price – and proceeds to the middle – product page, description, etc.
There are two ways to go about with A/B testing:
- Using the experiments section of Google ads
- Duplicating product pages
For this brand, we preferred to go with the duplication route for products that had shown the most signs of success.
Once duplicated, we began by testing various different product images and slowly worked our way to the titles and prices as we found more winning versions.
But keep in mind that A/B testing is a process that never stops. As long as you run ads to a product, you should be testing different things every 30 – 60 days regardless of the advertising platform.
Expanding Campaign Types
By this point, everything was running as expected.
And while the TPS strategy had been partially completed, there were still more ways to implement the first phase of it before moving on.
This was through various different campaign types.
Most eCommerce store owners focus on launching shopping campaigns and a few search here and there but that’s where the creativity ends.
Few realize that there are campaign types such as display, discovery, and many others that their eCommerce brands could benefit from.
Such was the case with this brand.
Our main goal here in terms of strategy was to introduce another stream of traffic from Google ads itself.
We did that by introducing retargeting discovery campaigns and a few Youtube cold and warm traffic campaigns.
The strategic approach here was not to essentially get a bunch of profitable sales from these campaigns. It was to test the potential scale of these and increase brand awareness.
And while we were focused on increasing brand awareness, we were having an influx of traffic that would eventually enter our retargeting flows and convert later on – a win – win situation.
When it comes to your eCommerce brand, the type of campaigns you launch isn’t as important as the intention behind those campaigns.
We used these intentions to go with the brand awareness route in terms of campaign types and ended up creating a profitable flow of traffic (at least from the retargeting campaigns).
Expanding Into Other Countries
One of the earlier things we saw (and also heard from the client) was that there was an extremely heavy reliance on the United States when it came to traffic.
According to the client, they had “never achieved success with international countries.” Upon a closer look, it became extremely clear why this was the case.
The first major issue was that conversion tracking had not been working properly. As a result, even if they were getting results from international countries, they weren’t aware of it.
Second, the majority of efforts for international scaling had been directed towards Performance Max campaigns. But the worst part of this strategy was there were multiple assets put inside the Pmax campaigns.
After analyzing all of these things, it had become clear that scaling outside the United States had virtually not been done at all. This is when we came up with an international TPS strategy.
It’s important to note that only the testing portion should be done internationally before implementing profitability and scaling. This ensures you’re only scaling and increasing ad spend if the results permit.
For this account, we kept our strategic approach fairly simple.
We launched all of the products inside one testing Performance Max campaign without any restrictions and started it at a budget we could afford to spend for a minimum of 30 days.
The launch was done for Canada and the United Kingdom initially and surprisingly, both campaigns started at amazing levels of 1x.
We were stumped. Unsure why this was happening.
The campaigns had been perfected according to the book. Everything was perfect.
This is exactly the moment where 95% of eCommerce store owners give up. They believe that their products aren’t needed in these other countries and never try again.
But during this stage, we knew better. See, we already had a backup strategy in case things went south.
One thing that stood out with the Pmax campaigns targeting international countries was the high cpc’s. This brand was accustomed to getting good results around the $0.50 CA – $0.75 CAD mark while these campaigns were about to cross $1 CAD – no good.
This told us that we needed to go the standard shopping route to control bids and that’s exactly what we did.
The results speak for themselves.
With all of the campaigns churning and bringing in over a 15x – 25x increase in conversion value just within 4 weeks, it was time to prepare for further scale.
When it comes to strategy, it makes sense to separate the profitability phase from the scaling phase but the reality is, both phases work together.
And the start of one phase naturally leads into the next.
This specific eCommerce brand had already gone through similar phases in the past with Google ads since it had been operating since 2019. In terms of strategy, our main goal was to reevaluate where things went wrong and create an approach that differed from that.
During the time the scaling and profitability had been (vaguely) introduced within the account, there were no Performance Max campaigns.
As a result, it was pretty easy to determine what the strategy would be – one Pmax campaign for the best selling products.
Most eCommerce brands end their scaling efforts at this point, however.
For us, this was just the beginning of a whole new realm of scaling.
Some of the things we took a strategic approach towards, and also recommend other eCom brands do, included:
- Product pages
- Backend flows
The perfect way to scale the product pages based on my experience is to focus on conversion rates.
At the end of the day, the higher the conversion rate, the more the sales.
For this brand, we helped the CEO analyze some of the top competitor brands in the same niche and figure out what they were doing, where the leaks were, and how we could improve them further.
This led to a 24% increase in the conversion rate in just the first month or so after we began work.
With a higher conversion rate in effect, we had more room to focus on other parts of scale. The campaigns meant for scaling were already performing well and we decided to use the data to our advantage to focus on SEO.
Most eCommerce store owners don’t realize that Performance Max campaigns actually give a lot of valuable data in terms of keywords and more within the ‘Insights’ section.
We used this section to our advantage by improving SEO for the titles, descriptions, and other parts of the feed. Naturally, this allowed us to get more directed traffic, further helping the campaigns optimize.
In terms of strategy for retargeting and backend flows, we had no fancy plan nor did we control things like the backend (our main job was Google ads).
As a result, we tested a wide variety of retargeting campaigns to scale the account further and even ran some despite unprofitability.
The main goal we had in mind here was to consistently appear in front of the ideal customers and they would eventually convert either from the ads or the backend flows.
Long Term Growth
It has been a long and arduous journey to say the least with this eCommerce brand.
We originally started work with them back on the 23rd of July in 2022 and as of today (October 31, 2022), we continue to work and scale with them.
To sustain this long term growth for this brand, we created a strategy that would allow us to slowly ramp up ad spend over time.
This has really allowed us to preserve the revenue and overall profitability of the brand, which is one of the main goals for the CEO.
And for the upcoming months of Q4 and into 2023, we’re keeping the same approach in mind.
Our TPS strategy will continue to run within this ad account but one of the major goals we have for this brand is to expand further than just shopping and search. We all know competition is just going to keep increasing as time goes on.
And the majority of competitors put almost all of their eggs in the ‘shopping and search’ basket.
To stand out, we’ll need to dive further into other campaign types and scale them.
Another major strategy we plan to implement for the long term growth of this brand revolves around brand awareness.
In the era of instant gratification, we aim to take a different approach with this brand and scale it to hundreds of thousands of new eyeballs. Regardless of whether they purchase on the first go or not, our main goal is to make this brand the industry behemoth with Google ads.
After all, true scale comes from a collective of different campaigns all operating with different end goals coming together.
Working With A Google Ads Agency
With eCommerce, regardless of what strategy you decide to implement, it all comes down to strategy.
Have the right strategy and it’s not uncommon to grow by 100%+ every three months. Have the wrong strategy and all your results will come tumbling down.
Way too often, eCommerce store owners or marketing managers start to put on too many hats within the business.
This could mean you’re handling the SEO while micromanaging your ads team while dealing with stock issues. The list just goes on and on.
A good team doesn’t act as a burden on your shoulders that you constantly need to direct, but it’s rather an extension to your skillset.
Over here at Yoru Marketing, we’re less of the traditional ‘agency’ and more of a growth partner that works with you and leads your eCommerce brand to greater profitability & scale.
So if you’re doing $40,000+ per month and want to scale further, let’s work together. Schedule a free call with me and get a strategy report with a detailed outline of exactly how your brand can grow – you keep it even if we don’t work out.