If you’re an ecommerce retailer, chances are that you’ll have heard of Google Shopping and wondered whether it’s something that can drive more sales for your brand. Google Shopping is a service which allows customers to search for specific products and perform price comparisons. Intended to help customers make smarter choices with their cash and helping companies showcase their great value, Shopping was once known as Google Product Search, but it’s rebrand has also came with an algorithm shake-up and new rules in place. Here’s the rundown on everything you need to know about how Google Shopping advertising works:

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What powers Google Shopping?

This search feature is powered by Google AdWords and Google Merchant Centre. AdWords provides the relevant shopping campaigns and an interface for monitoring and managing your campaign activities, whilst Google Merchant Centre provides the product information which is fed into AdWords.

How does it work?

The components of a Google Shopping advert are not the same as the principles powering a text-based ad campaign. Google has far more power over how and when product listings appear, and uses all the information available to them so as to establish when your particular listing will appear.

Who benefits from Google Shopping?

Broadly speaking, online retailers will benefit from Google shopping advertising by means of the increased potential to make sales. Ecommerce sites have to pay in order for their products to appear; this is not a platform designed for cultivating organic search results, but a paid marketing channel which has the potential to transform the world of ecommerce and online selling. Google Shopping could prove particularly beneficial for smaller businesses which lack the budget to go head-to-head with larger chains, but still want to ensure their products are seen by the right customers.

How do you make the most of Google Shopping?

As with any PPC activity, Google Shopping advertising requires careful optimisation of every single element. Ensuring your product images, information and pricing is up-to-date is absolutely paramount, as is the continual monitoring of your campaign to maximise the chances of continued effectiveness. To use Google Shopping, send your product data via Merchant Centre and a campaign via AdWords; Google Shopping will them use this information to create Google ads around the web, helping connect prospective customers with your items. These ads are called Shopping ads, providing more information than a standard text advert, with a photo of your products, price, store name and more information. These ads help to drive more traffic and click through rates to your site, providing qualified leads and reporting to help make assessing ad effectiveness that much easier.