Top 7 Advanced Google Shopping Strategies

Published: 23 February 2022

Updated: 21 February 2024

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Olga is a digital marketing specialist @Viden, delivering results for brands through data-driven strategies and result-oriented tactics across Google & Bing Ads, Facebook Ads, Amazon Ads & more.
Top 7 Advanced Google Shopping Strategies

With approximately 56% percent of Google PPC budgets spent on Shopping, product ads are an integral part of any marketing strategy across Google Ads and are even more popular than Search ads.

To be a successful retailer and run effective Shopping campaigns, quite often, going the simplest route and launching an all-products Smart Shopping campaign may not be enough to deliver successful results and meet your performance goals. Instead, it’s crucial to try and get as much out of the platform as possible through advanced strategies, set-ups, and optimizations, testing different approaches to figure out what works best for your business.

In this article, we have put together our top picks for the most effective advanced tactics and strategies to use for your next Google Shopping campaign.

1. Segmentation By Performance

One of the ways to structure your Google Shopping campaigns is by segmenting products into different campaigns based on their performance.

This approach is only available to advertisers who have collected enough data on their products’ performance through other shopping campaigns. It is easier to implement on the basis of your KPIs.

For example, your profitability or ROAS goal is 200%. So, the first campaign would include products with ROAS of less than 200%, the second one would include products with ROAS of around 200%, and the third could be for products with ROAS above 300%.

If you’re working with Smart campaigns, it’s recommended to gradually switch to the new approach, especially when it comes to the best-performing products, so as not to disrupt the algorithm and the delivery of your best-sellers.

Segmenting your campaigns by performance allows you to promptly scale your most effective product groups and bring the underperforming ones closer to your target levels while not missing out on potential sales by turning off the underperforming product groups.

2. Segmentation By Price

As a rule, most of eCommerce stores and websites contain a range of goods with different price margins. While sales volume and conversion rates (CVR) significantly impact the shopping campaigns’ efficiency, prices are also an inherent part of your campaigns’ profitability.

With different price ranges, you may have different conversion and click-through rates and, as a result, different CPAs and ROAS.

Breaking down your products by prices can significantly ease your Shopping campaign management process, especially if there is a significant difference in the pricing between products sold on your website. For example, this approach could work nicely for a jewelry store selling premium-grade gemstone necklaces and middle-priced silver chokers.

To make price segmentation easier, you can create and use custom labels for your products, separating them into low-tier, middle-tier, and high-tier categories (e.g., products below $100, products between $100 and $300, and products above $300).

By combining products at the same price range, you can get better control over the sales volumes and costs while maintaining good efficiency and profitability of your campaigns.

You’ll often see higher sales volumes from cheaper products, however, their ROAS may be on the low end due to high costs per click. Separating them from more expensive products allows you to distribute the budget and control the bids better, especially if you’re using Smart Shopping campaigns.

The structure also works well if the bulk of the sales and profitability comes from expensive products while the cheaper ones receive the most impressions. By breaking down your products in that manner, you can direct traffic to the products with higher conversion rates and better profitability.

Further reading: How Much do Google Ads Cost in 2023?

3. Adapting The Website’s Structure

Another way to structure your Shopping campaigns is to replicate the structure you use on your website. It can be segmented by product categories (e.g., Road Bikes, Mountain Bikes, Women’s Bikes, etc.) or brands (e.g., Hershey’s, Cadbury, Lindt, etc.).

With this structure, you get more control and visibility over your campaigns’ and products’ performance and costs. It pairs well with the Standard Shopping campaign type and manual bidding strategies, allowing you to get more granular with your campaigns and manage your bids on the product rather than the catalog level, as well as gain more insight into search terms your products show up on.

With the Smart Shopping campaign type, however, you’ll have to exclude the products, draining your budget, which doesn’t bring in any sales.

4. Combining Standard And Smart Shopping

This approach involves using both types of Shopping campaigns – Smart and Standard – for different products. There are many ways to organize your campaigns and products within this strategy.

For example, you can add products that receive few impressions within your Smart campaign to the Standard campaign, adjusting bids accordingly. Alternatively, you can sort your underperforming products into the Smart Shopping campaign to boost and optimize their delivery towards your performance and marketing goals while using the manual campaign type for your best-sellers to maximize impression share and visibility.

This strategy works well when you’re also segmenting your products by performance. If you have goods that work well in Standard shopping campaigns, and you don’t want to lose traffic and impact the algorithm learnings, you can sort your underperforming products into a Smart campaign – this way, you won’t lose the historical data that contributes to the algorithm’s delivery while also improving your campaigns’ efficiency.

5. Impression Share (IS) Optimization

Impression share optimization is an approach that’s commonly used to maximize the visibility of certain products.

Take a look at the report containing impression share or lost impression share, impressions, and clicks for your products. Check the products with zero or few impressions, and sort them into a separate campaign, adjusting the bids if necessary, to monitor the dynamic of their performance better and boost their visibility.

You should keep a close eye on the campaign and update it with new products if needed, depending on the traffic.

This strategy can help you receive more impressions for products that rarely appear in SERPs and determine the cause for low impressions. It can also be used to separate and scale your best-selling products with a lower-end impression share or increase the visibility of new products.

Sometimes products with good click-through rates tend to spend most of your budget and take away the impressions, and, thus, clicks from new or less popular products, which can prevent you from obtaining valuable learnings and data. IS optimization allows you to improve your position against your competitors and drive more traffic to your products.

If separating low-visibility products and updating their bids doesn’t bring any results, you may want to check your product feed and make adjustments, if possible. Consider updating product images, titles, or descriptions.

6. Remarketing Shopping Campaigns

Remarketing is a powerful tool for re-engaging product viewers, cart-abandoners, and past purchasers, widely used across Google Ads and other marketing platforms.

So, why not apply the learnings to Shopping campaigns?

You can combine the remarketing lists you use in Search ads with your Google Shopping campaigns (please note, however, that it only works with Standard Shopping). Adjust your bids based on available historical CTR & CVR data for different categories of users, such as past customers or website visitors.

You can also add Customer Match audiences, upload lists of past shoppers or people who signed up to your mailing list but haven’t made a purchase to your Google Shopping campaigns, focus on repeat purchasers, or create cross-sell and up-sell campaigns.

Using remarketing audiences can be incredibly effective in reigniting the interest in your brand or product from past users and nudging them further down the customer’s funnel.

Further reading: How to Create Retargeting Ads on Facebook and Google and Use Them Effectively

7. Keyword Targeting

Another useful strategy you can apply to your Google Shopping campaigns is to strengthen your control over the delivery and targeting of your products by showing them on specific keywords through the use of scripts.

One example is the script, written by Daniel Gilbert, that works by loading a list of target keywords into a Google Sheet. Whenever a Shopping ad is triggered by a search query that doesn’t match your list, the search query will automatically be added as a negative keyword. The search query will also be divided into separate words and added as negatives, however, no negatives will be able to block your existing target keywords.

While it sounds great in theory, it must be noted that this strategy should be used carefully – and certainly not on a brand new campaign or account with no previous Shopping ads history, as it may significantly restrict your products’ delivery. This approach would be perfect for products with plenty of historical data – when you can have a clear understanding of queries that bring in the most revenue for your business or, alternatively, if your campaigns trigger a multitude of irrelevant search terms that are nearly impossible to sort through (in which case you may also want to check and optimize your product listings).

Once you have the data, you can build your campaigns based on keyword targeting. You can either launch a single campaign for all products, using a list of target keywords to block out any queries you don’t want your products to show for or segment your campaigns by high, medium, and low-value keywords (e.g., high and low purchase intent keywords, long-tail and generic keywords, etc.).

This strategy also allows you to maximize your presence on keywords that mean the most for your business and ensure you get an edge over your competitors.

Further reading: How to Expand to New Markets Using Google Ads

Conclusion

In general, you can adapt various strategies to build and structure your Google Shopping campaigns. You can opt for a more straightforward approach with an all-products Smart campaign to quickly gain insights and learnings for your products, or break your campaigns into more complex structures, refining your targeting and product groupings for maximum efficiency.

With performance trends ever fluctuating, it’s a must to test different strategies and determine what works best for your business, taking your Google Shopping campaigns to the next level.

If you’re not sure which approach would be the best for your brand, you can contact us here. Our digital marketing and strategy experts will be happy to answer your questions and help you find the best option for your business.

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