Google Shopping Ads are the center of a powerful Google ads strategy for just about any eCommerce brand out there.
So it makes sense that you figure out what works for your brand the best.
But how do you go about the process and where do you figure this out?
Before we dive into the details, let’s understand how shopping ads work on a broad level.
Due to the fact that Google shopping ads appear at the very top of search results, most customers convert directly from them.
And who can blame them?
Less scrolling. Less reading. More quick actions.
This also means that competition is fierce with Google shopping.
But the reality is 90% of eCommerce brands get up to 80% of their Google ads revenue from shopping.
This makes it that much more important to focus on them.
And while finding the perfect Google shopping ads strategy may seem difficult, it really boils down to a few aspects:
> The strength of the foundation (product feed, SEO, landing page)
> Campaign type
> Campaign setup
Let’s discuss the strategies in detail.
- Segregation based on collections
One advanced shopping ads strategy we’ve been finding great success with is the one segregated based on collections.
Say you run an eCom brand in the baby niche.
And you sell cribs, bassinets, diapers, and strollers.
A common approach that can get you going would be a shopping campaign (Performance Max or standard shopping) with all the products in it.
However, when you reach a more advanced level, this simply doesn’t cut it anymore.
The algorithm craves accurate data. It leeches off of it to become smarter.
And the best way to do that is segregate each of these four collections into their own Pmax or standard shopping campaigns.
The exact settings you choose to set up these campaigns aren’t as important as the fact that you’re separating the products out.
This step alone can change the entire trajectory of your DTC brand.
Check your current Google shopping campaign strategy implemented by your media buyer or Google ads agency and see if segregation is in place.
If it isn’t, your brand most likely has a lot of room to grow.
But on the other hand, if your brand doesn’t have too many collections or this approach has not worked so far, you need to try this next strategy.
- Segregation based on key performance indicators (KPIs)
Similar to the first strategy, this approach focuses on using a similarity between the products to group together.
And the main reason we group things is to make it easier for the algorithm to pinpoint our ideal customer.
With this approach, all we’re doing is taking the products that have any of these characteristics which are similar:
> Cost of goods
> Profit margin
> Selling price
For instance, using the example above, if there are certain baby cribs that all cost $50 to source, you could put them inside one shopping campaign.
And this would result in a setup that’s more suited for these cribs compared to those with a cost of $100.
The beauty of this strategy is that it isn’t just limited to the cost of the product.
It can be expanded far into other metrics as well, such as the actual profit margin, selling price, and more.
The important thing to keep in mind is that a specific metric is kept in mind when utilizing this strategy.
- Segregation based on assets (Performance Max)
This next strategy applies a bit more to Performance Max campaigns.
Shopping campaigns were originally designed to showcase products only but with the creation of Pmax, you can now turn a shopping campaign into a whole bunch of other things.
For the longest time, we were completely against this approach.
I mean, turning one campaign into this multi-dimensional campaign that focused on a whole bunch of things would be effective…
Not exactly. At least not 100% of the time.
As we began to test more Performance Max campaigns with assets, we found out that some eCommerce brands actually responded positively to this.
The campaigns were running at a profitable ROI and for long periods of time as well.
This led us to this advanced Google shopping strategy Pmax assets vs Pmax no assets.
It’s as simple as it sounds.
Simply run some (or all) of your products inside one standard shopping campaign based on the bid that’s proven for your brand and run an experiment.
This experiment should be the Performance Max experiment.
What this does is test the Pmax campaign with a standard shopping campaign.
To successfully implement this strategy, you or your team will need to take care of two things:
- The bids should be pretty much the same campaign wide
- The Performance Max campaign must have assets inserted
While it’s not viable to test two Pmax campaigns side by side this way, the experiments section does allow this approach for testing purposes.
If the standard shopping campaign ends up doing better, you now know that your account most likely prefers a Pmax without assets.
And vice versa.
Simple and direct strategy.
4. Segregation based on ‘Customer acquisition’ goal
One thing most eCommerce store owners don’t realize is that Performance Max campaigns are designed to go after hot traffic along with cold.
This makes it a tad bit difficult to understand if the current performance is due to cold traffic or hot.
Performance Max’s customer acquisition option removes any room for error.
The perfect strategy here is to have one Performance Max campaign running with this option checked and a separate retargeting only campaign running for the same exact products.
This keeps the Pmax targeting only a cold audience and lets you segregate to warm and hot traffic accordingly.
No more of your own branded keywords influencing your results.
5. Segregation based on country
Way too many eCommerce brands don’t take this seriously.
As a result, they end up targeting the same location as 99% of their competitors.
And end up going after their scraps in terms of profits.
Expand your horizons, especially if you have the capacity to ship.
Just because your brand needs to charge a bit extra for shipping internationally doesn’t mean your products aren’t wanted in those countries.
The best Google shopping ads strategy is one that segregates each shopping campaign based on country.
The most important strategy here is to target each country in each individual campaign separately.
Mixing up multiple countries together is not an effective strategy.
Our eCommerce google ads agency gets to deep dive into all kinds of Google ads accounts for eCom brands and what we see work the best when targeting international markets is smart bidding.
Instead of guessing what the perfect bid should be, give automated bidding a try.
6. Audiences Supercharge
Most eCommerce store owners know about launching shopping campaigns using fancy strategies but few know about using previous audiences to improve results.
One of the most underutilized strategies is that of adding special audiences to existing shopping campaigns.
Audiences full of people who have taken some form of action in the past.
For this strategic approach, we use audiences that:
> Abandoned cart in last 540 days
> Initiated checkout in last 540 days
> Purchased in last 540 days
The goal here is to create a custom audience list around all of these audiences individually and insert them into shopping campaigns.
But they should be inserted based on an “observation” basis.
With Google shopping, enabling this is as simple as choosing the option when adding it in.
With Performance Max, you actually have to create a brand new custom segment and then select the audience.
7. Second Chance
The final advanced Google shopping ads strategy would be the second chance approach.
When it comes to eCommerce, the reality is – 95% of your products will fail on the first go.
For a variety of different reasons, that too.
The product may not be fit right now for the market due to the wrong season.
Or the product may not have the right overall layout (image, price etc.).
It’s simply not effective to want the product to get sales on the first try.
There’s just too much influencing every single product on your list that may influence sales.
What we like to do is launch a campaign called the ‘second chance’ campaign.
In most cases, this is a standard shopping campaign with a fairly low bid of $0.10 to $0.30.
And it’s designed to give every single ‘failed’ product a second try.
While most products fail within this campaign as well, we often see about 10% – 20% of the products actually come back to life.
From this point onwards, a deeper analysis can reveal exactly why they failed in the first place.
But constantly cycle in the ‘bad’ products into this second chance campaign and let Google’s algorithm do the rest.
If your eCommerce brand is doing $40,000+ per month and you want to scale it to the next level with Google ads, let’s work together.
Schedule a free strategy call with us so we can see where the problems are with your current Google ads strategy and how we can work together to scale it to the next level.