Recently, Google has made Showcase Shopping ads available on its new AdWords interface in countries across the world. This new ad product has the potential to transform the way that businesses reach new customers on Google. Below, we’ll discuss how this ad format works and talk more about how using Showcase Shopping ads can transform your Google Shopping strategy and boost campaign results.
What are Google Showcase Shopping Ads?
You might be wondering, what are Google Showcase Shopping Ads and how do they differ from the standard Google Shopping ad? Well, if you’re already using Google Shopping campaigns as part of your online marketing strategy, then you know how powerful this advertising tool can be in helping you reach new consumers on the search engines. In fact, Google Shopping ads can account for up to 43% of retailer Google search ad clicks and 70% of non-branded clicks. And this ad format continues to see new growth each year.
Given the popularity of Google Shopping ads among retailers, it should come as no surprise that Google has created a new ad product that helps you reach new audiences online. The Showcase Shopping ad appears when search engine users search for a more broad or general search term. This ad format it showcases information about brands and three of their relevant products. These ads are a great way to reach consumers who aren’t searching for a specific brand but rather browsing for different types of products online.
Showcase Shopping ads differ in a few important ways from the typical Google Shopping ad. Here’s what a standard Google Shopping ad looks like when you search for “Timberland boots”:
Here, you see static product images of individual boots, all from the brand Timberland. This is helpful for search engine users who already know what brand of product they would like to buy. But what about those who want to see more of a broad assortment?
That’s where Google Showcase ads come in.
Here’s what the Showcase ad looks like when you search for “men’s boots”:
With the Showcase ad, several images appear from each brand’s catalog, which are chosen by the advertiser. Once the user clicks on one of these ads, it will expand showing more relevant information about the brand as well as the retailer’s shopping feed. Users can scroll through and click on individual products to learn more or make a purchase. These ads allow you to include a unique header image, logo, and enticing ad copy up to 120 characters.
It’s important to note that Showcase Shopping ads use maximum cost per engagement (CPE) bidding. With this bidding system, the advertiser is only charged when someone spends at least 10 seconds within the expanded ad, visits the brand’s website, or clicks on one of the featured products. This means that you won’t be charged simply because someone expands your ad.
In addition, you set your bid for Showcase ads at the ad group level. This is different than the typical Google shopping ad, which requires you to set bids at the product group level.
How to Set Up a Google Shopping Campaign
Now that you have a better understanding of what Showcase ads are and how they differ from a typical Google Shopping ad, it’s time to start setting up your first Showcase Shopping ad campaign.
To get started, you’ll need to log into the new AdWords interface. Then, you will choose a Shopping campaign or create a new one. Once that’s done, you can choose to create a Showcase ad group. Here’s what the dashboard looks like when you start to create an ad group:
Getting started with your Google Showcase Shopping ad is easy!
After you’ve chosen the Google Showcase ad format, you can then set your bid and begin to select the product groups you want to showcase in the campaign. These are the products that will show up under the header image in your expanded ad.
After you’ve chosen the ad format, you’ll need to set your CPE bid and choose your product groups.
Remember, with Showcase ads, you don’t set bids for individual product groups. Instead, you are setting bids at the ad group level. That’s why it’s important to avoid putting all of your products into just one ad group. If you do this, then you will have to use the same bid for every one of your products, which isn’t the best use of your ad budget.
Instead of setting just one bid for all your products, you need to arrange your ad groups based on similar products. For example, a clothing retailer might include all of their women’s dresses in one ad group and their men’s shoes in another. It also helps to develop engaging header images for each of your unique product categories.
Once you have decided on your product categories, it’s time to start creating the actual ad. On the Showcase Shopping ad dashboard, you’ll have the option to upload your header image and see what your ad will look like to Google searchers:
You can choose to use either the header image or a product image for your collapsed ad.
As shown above, the header image dimensions are 1080 x 566, with the image in either JPG or PNG format. The overall file size should also be less than 10 MB. For best results, you should eliminate any watermarks, borders, or promotional copy from your header image. You should also aim to feature at least one of your products in this image.
You can then choose what you want users to see on your collapsed ad. Remember, this is what they are seeing before they engage with the content. That means it’s probably best to prioritize your product images over brand-focused imagery as the products are going to be what draws consumers to your ad. If your header image is relevant to the product group, then it may make sense to just use the header image as the primary image in your collapsed ad. Use your best judgement here, and just make sure that the image that appears in your collapsed ad is relevant and product-focused.
How Showcase Shopping Ads Impact Your Google Shopping Ad Strategy
We’ve discussed what Showcase ads are and how to create them. Now, it’s time to talk about why you should integrate these ads into your Google Shopping ad strategy.
According to Google, 40% of shopping searches on the search engine are for broad-match terms. If you want the opportunity to engage the consumers searching for broader search terms, then you need to include Showcase ads in your Google ads strategy. Not only does the Showcase Shopping ad format help you engage users searching for more generic search terms, but it also allows you to present more information about your brand than the typical Google Shopping ad. This can help in building brand recognition among new visitors.
It’s also important to consider how remarketing will fit into your Google Shopping strategy after you have added Showcase Shopping ads. Since Showcase ads are aimed at new visitors, there’s a good chance that many of these visitors will not convert on the first visit. That means you will need to use remarketing Shopping, Search, Display ads to reach back out to these new consumers after their first visit. This will help you get the most value out of your Google Shopping ad campaigns.
Need help getting started with your Google Showcase Shopping Ads? The team at SevenAtoms helps businesses just like yours boost sales through high-performing Google Shopping ad campaigns.