This article outlines a strategy to dominate Shopping Ads in Google. Our specialists have accumulated a lot of information from hundreds of advertisers and agencies over the years and discovered that certain things are often overlooked.

Our approaches work for medium, large and small advertisers. Our approach has been adopted by hundreds of advertisers across Europe. Every advertiser who follows the steps in this article will experience an increase in their performance. Based on the initial situation, we can see increases up to 25% and even 200%.

We are excited to have you join the csspartner.io “movement” of smart google shopping advertisers.

The 3 Shopping Ranking Factors

The shopping ads auction has become increasingly competitive over the years. It is important to know what you can do to outsmart competitors if you don’t want to spend more on shopping ads. The most successful Shopping advertiser does not always have the biggest pockets.

Do you want to be the best in the Shopping Ads Auction? We’d like to share with you 3 factors that will determine the success of your shopping ads campaigns.

Here is how to increase each of these ranking factors.

Boost your Bids

It will not surprise you that, to dominate the shopping ads auction, a winning bid is crucial. This chapter will show you how to raise your bids immediately without spending more. We will then show you how to bid more effectively.

1. Increase your bids by 20% with csspartner.io

When you switch from Google Shopping CSS to csspartner.io, you get a 20% discount on your CPC. This results in 20% extra bidding power.

2. Choose the right bid approach

You can set a bid manually or let Google set your bids based on your goals.

3. Set higher bids to specific search terms

It is possible to create groups and set different bids for different search terms by using the waterfall principle. This makes it possible to dominate extra on for branded or other high converting search terms.

The effect of switching to a CSS

Switching to a CSS partner has the same effect on your bids as raising them 20%.

You will get 20% more bidding power when you switch to the a CSS.

Good news! You can keep your existing Merchant Center. There are no other changes. Switching to CSS is easy and doesn’t involve any downtime.

How to use the 20% extra bidding power

There are actually two strategies you could pursue with the CSS discount. You could increase the turnover of your shopping campaigns or improve the profitability of the campaigns.

1.Increase your turnover

If you have a good ROI (return on investment) / ROAS (return on ad spend) on your shopping campaigns and you are looking for more volume, it is best to leave the bids of your campaigns unchanged. You will note (we have seen this in many accounts we monitored after switching) that your ad impressions and clicks are sharply increasing. The same thing actually happens if you were to increase your campaign bids: your impressions and consequently your revenue increases.

That extra volume in shopping campaigns is usually found in impressions on less specific search terms (higher up in the funnel). That extra volume will have a lower click-through rate (CTR) and conversion rate. The overall performance of your campaign does not stay the same. Choose this strategy if you have some room in your ROI and if you are looking for growth.

2. Improve your profitability

If you do not have too much room in the ROI of your campaigns and you wish to save costs to improve profitability, then you should lower the bids of your campaigns 10% -20%. This will reduce the cost per click while maintaining the reach of the original setting.

Optimize your Product Titles

Research shows that product content can be a powerful way to increase the performance of Shopping Campaigns within Google Ads. Many advertisers overlook this important element. Optimizing the product title is by far the most important variable. For hundreds of advertisers who optimize their relevance through title optimization, we have seen performance gains of between 20% and 25%.

Google Shopping allows product titles to contain up to 150 characters. Google emphasizes the importance of using the 150 characters to allow Google to know the product’s purpose.

Best Practices For Product Title Optimization

From the many product title optimization we supported and analyzed, we summarized the 8 most important takeaways for you.

1. Avoid Short/vague Titles: Utilize The 150 Available Characters

This is your chance to let Google know what the product is. The better you do this, the better Google can match your ad to relevant search queries.

2. Include All Relevant Attributes Of The Product

People using very specific keywords are often the best converting consumers. Make sure to add all attributes that describe your product. Go beyond the standard ones like color, size, etc. What words really characterize your product?

3. Put The Most Important Characteristics First

For two reasons it is important to place the most searched for and most distinguishing characteristics of your products first:

1. Words in front of the title outweigh in the search algorithm. This is the same principle as SEO title optimization: the most important words need to be placed in front to increase their weight.

2. Improve the clickthrough rate (CTR) of your ads: only the first 20-30 characters get shown to most customers. So the first words are by far the most important to catch the attention of potential customers. If your product has a strong Unique Selling Point (USP), consider to put it in the visible area. Only if searchers hover over your ad, they get to see the first 70 characters and only visitors of the product page on the Google Shopping tab can see the full title.

4. Use Your Customer’s Language: Integrate Important Keywords

A feed management tool may be used to create titles using product data taken from a template. Does that mean your titles match what people are actually searching for? This is only the beginning.

There is usually much more to be done to make titles that match the language of your customers. It is not possible to include important words in your titles. The chances of your title being highlighted increases dramatically by including them. Keyword research is key to finding title enhancements and improvements.

5. Create Distinct Titles For Product Variants

In case of different variants (types, formats, colors) of a product, make sure to distinguish. If titles are (almost) exactly the same, the chance of showing more than one item is smaller. By distinguishing the title the chance of serving more products for one search is higher.

6. Make Your Title Look Well-ordered And Attractive

  • Capitalize The First Letter of Important Words
  • Use numerals for numbers, not spelled out (3 instead of three)
  • Use pipes | dashes – and slashes / as separators to make titles look better and structured
  • Spell out measurements (inch instead of “)

7. Start With Your Bestseller Products

We have seen that 20% of all the products account revenue is at least 80%. Start with the best-selling products, with short titles, and optimize them first. These are the low hanging fruit. The second is to look for products that are good at conversion but can be found more easily.

8. Consider It An Ongoing Process

Title optimization is not a one-time activity. Your assortment changes as well as search behaviour. Make sure you allocate some time for optimization on a regular basis.

Work On Your Pricing

Did you know that product price has a major impact on your Shopping Ads performance? 

If you are seeing low CTRs or low click shares for your products it could be a sign that your pricing is not as competitive as other stores.

It’s easy to see how people will click on an ad that advertises the same product if the price is identical.

Dropping your prices is the easiest way to solve this problem. However, not everyone can afford to drop their prices.

Things you can do to make better use of product pricing in Google Shopping

  1. Identify the products that perform poorly (CTRs, conversion rates, impression shares, etc.) and check if the price might be an issue.
  2. Take a look at the prices of your competitors for those products and see whether there are big differences in the pricing
  3. If there is a significant gap, are you able to bridge it in any way?
  4. If not, consider lowering your max CPC for this item as it will be hard to compete and advertising on it might be wasteful

Pro tip: Google takes into account the total purchase price. If you are unable to lower the product’s actual prices, you should check whether there is any way to reduce or eliminate shipping costs.