Google Shopping vs Google AdWords
Which Pay Per Click (PPC) Ad Should You Use?
Google Shopping, formerly Google Product Listing Ads (PLA), and Google AdWords search and display ads are both excellent ways to draw more traffic and conversions to your site. Clients often ask us about the similarities and differences between the two pay per click ads, as well as which one we would recommend as an optimal solution for their site. See below and learn more about whether Google Shoppinng or Google AdWords would work best for you.
Google AdWords Key Attributes:
- Google AdWords allows website owners to bid on specific keywords in order to display their ads at the top of Google’s search results.
- More commonly used for both eCommerce sites and brick and mortar businesses.
- Geared towards sites without a very large volume of products.
- Allows for more control over advertisement messaging, sale information, branding, etc.
Google Shopping Key Attributes:
- Google Shopping allows website owners to set their desired cost per click in order to display their product listing ads at the top of Google’s search results. This moderates your bids for individual products, product groups, categories, and your daily budget.
- Google Shopping ads feature product pictures. AdWords ads do not.
- No need to setup text ads or bid on any keywords.
- Mainly tailored towards eCommerce sites that have a product feed and carry a large volume of products.
Which one should you use?
It depends on your situation. Here are a few things to keep in mind when making the decision:
- Google Shopping is better for sites with a large volume of products. For example, if your site sells 1,000 products and you would ideally like to have one ad for each product and have the landing page for each product be the product details page, then Google Shopping is for you. Setting up the same scenario in AdWords is complicated and more time-consuming to manage.
- Google Shopping pay per click (PPC) ads usually lead to much higher click-through rates. While traffic and revenue increase, more clicks means spending more ad budget. They are also generally less expensive per click, but there is more competition. Prior to 2012, Google Shopping ads were completely free.
- Google AdWords pay per click (PPC) ads are better for branding, messaging, and promotions.
Google Shopping Tips:
If you’ve made the decision to use Google Shopping PLA’s, then these tips should help you:
- The quality of your product feed is very important, so ensure that its optimized and 100% free of errors. If your data feed doesn’t match your website, then Google will not show your product ads.
- Become a “Google Trusted Store” to rank higher and increase click-through rates.
- Use a unique product image (avoid stock photos on eBay, Amazon, etc.), make sure your images are high-quality, and free of watermarks.
- Google Merchant Center and Google AdWords accounts are required. However, a standard Google AdWords text ad campaign is not required to use Google Shopping.
- Best practice for Google Shopping Campaign:
– Maintain feeds and product data quality
– Optimize for unique product categories
– Prepare and optimize for big events
Our team of search specialists is certified and experienced in Google AdWords and Google Analytics.