The Results Are In: Google Shopping Finishes Strong for the Holidays

It’s no surprise that a Google was the shining star for holiday shopping in 2016 and all signs point to Google Shopping for the success. What may surprise some is that Google Shopping is nothing new, it has been on the scene for over 10 years!

Originally named Google Base, back when dial-up was a thing, this was a free shopping search engine where businesses provided product information to Google and Google included these products in shopping searches. However, the Google Shopping we all know and love today is a completely different beast.

What is Google Shopping?

For the Advertiser or Business

In 2012, Google Base changed names and switched to a pay only program. Now Google Shopping will only list your products in Google Shopping when you have a paid Google Adwords account as well as submitting properly formatted product information to Google using Google Merchant Center.

Revenue comes directly from Google Shopping’s Product Listing Ads or PLAs. PLAs are online ads that contain an image and text description on the search results page. PLAs are also referred to as Shopping Ads.

Users can find these ads:

  • At the top of search results
  • At the right of search results

In Google Shopping itself where a comparison is provided Google Shopping did well immediately, and with the timing of their launch being in the holiday quarter, the ads yielded an excellent growth rate for the company.

The increase in Google Shopping’s growth since 2012 has been amazing. Adobe’s Digital Index reported that advertisers spent 47% more on Google Shopping than they did in previous years.

Interestingly, Shopping Ads only represent 20% of paid search clicks, so it’s safe to say more growth is expected. Throughout the holiday shopping season shopping ad impressions increased among all device types, however, mobile devices saw the biggest jump.

Best Practices with Google Shopping

  • Accurate descriptions, inventory, and products Use keywords describing
  • Use keywords describing the product, style, color, and size, etc.
  • Use descriptions with 70 words as that is what users will see
  • Use very clear images
  • Offer promotions to stand out among competitors
  • Have a game plan for your campaigns based on industry
  • Make your site mobile friendly. This is not negotiable with the market trend
  • Use geographic bid modifiers when selling locally

The time is now to get involved with Google Shopping. Your focus should be on watching trends and devouring up-to- date information on Google’s constantly changing algorithms and tools. Otherwise, your business is going to find itself way behind. Consider working with a reputable firm to help you navigate through Google Shopping Ads.

For more information on how to successfully build an AdWords or Google Shopping Campaign, contact us at [email protected]!

Menachem Ani

Menachem Ani ()

Online Advertising and eCommerce Expert with over a decade of success developing high-impact marketing strategies for online retailers and lead-generation clients.