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Ready for the Holiday Season?

And just like that, it’s the time of the year again! As the holiday season approaches and Black Friday, basically the biggest day of the year for retailers, digital marketers are scrambling around to get the most conversions of the coming season.

Amongst retailers, paid search is still the fastest growing digital channel, this is according to a recent report by eMarketer. In the same report, they estimate that ad spends on retail search will jump to $13.12 billion in 2019 – a 22.5% increase year-on-year – in the U.S. alone.

Despite having a formidable opponent for this year – Amazon Advertising – Google Shopping still remains the favorite.

To make sure your accounts are ready for the coming season, here are some tips and tricks to consider when running Google Shopping

Take Advantage of Google’s Automation

Last year, Google introduced to the public Smart Shopping. Similar to Smart Bidding in search ads, Smart Shopping works simultaneously with machine learning algorithms to optimize your campaigns. Using this can save you so much time required to analyze historical data, re-strategize, and manually change your bids.

However, if you feel like you can optimize your campaigns better and have the time to do so, I’d recommend doing an A/B testing on two campaigns before the holiday season. Duplicate your campaigns and test the machine algorithm against your own optimizations to decide which one is better.

Structure is Your Best Friend

If you are erring on the side of Smart Shopping, the structure is mainly for reporting purposes. However, if you are optimizing your campaigns manually, your shopping structure can make or break your campaign’s overall performance.

Make sure that you split your campaigns out horizontally by whichever makes the most sense to your business.

Continue Feeding Optimization

Forget positive keyword targeting for now. When it comes to Google Shopping, making sure your feed is accurate, up-to-date and optimized for performance, is the key to being successful.

Feed fields are usually weighted from left to right, so make sure you are placing your most important information at the beginning of your title and descriptions. But with that being said, all of these can still be tested. Maybe perhaps when it comes to your audience, the brand is the most important attribute for a product.

Always Keep your KPIs in Mind

In the middle of your strategy, you might be tempted to look at your engagement metrics. This may be a good idea but be aware that the CTR may not look like what you’re hoping for. Looking at the bright side, it’ll probably look worse than it actually is.

In Google Shopping, it is possible to show more than one ad for a search, meaning you will receive multiple impressions.

Now, as you bid aggressively during the holiday season, your clicks per search will go up as you’re showing more ads, but because of the higher number of impressions, the CTR reported may drop.

Budget Management

This holiday season, you are guaranteed to spend more as you bid more aggressively in response to competition and intent and you have to keep that in mind. Another thing to keep in mind before the holiday season is the awareness period. Customers will be browsing deals ahead of time and you need to allocate some budget to be visible from the get-go.

Conclusion

When it comes to the holiday season, it is always better to overprepare. Even if you are running Smart Shopping, we advise that you keep an eye out on all your accounts and maintain your budget. If your company is looking to spend some budget on Google Shopping, our team in Boston Web Marketing is happy to help! Contact us today!

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