The world of online retail is notoriously hard, competing against major players, local rivals and pretty much any business that can afford to spend money on SEO, PPC and online marketing.
We talked to the marketing team down at Plumbing Suppliers – BBS Plumb in Bristol and Bath, looking at how Google Shopping can deliver good sales for a low price, which from an ROI point of view, is of course what every business wants to achieve.
Google AdWords has a range of options that are suitable for most online businesses, but for retailers and businesses that offer an ecommerce store, Google Shopping is something that simply must be tried, which although you now have to pay for through AdWords, is one of the most cost effective ways of generating sales through an online shop.
Google Shopping has changed a lot over the past few years, moving away from Google Products and Froogle as it used to be known, to now simply being Google Shopping, with those changes also seeing it go from a free solution, to a paid one, as it was integrated with AdWords back in 2012, which although as we mention meant you had to spend money to use it, brought far more positives than it did bring negatives.
The issue many online retails have with AdWords and the more traditional search campaign is that put simply, it can be expensive, as someone typing in “bathrooms” could be looking at a range of things, and the chances of your business having exactly what they need with such a general search term is unlikely, but by then, you have already paid for this visitor. Of course, you can be far more specific and target “green luxury bathrooms” but once again, this is still a general search term and you probably won’t have the right shade of green!
This is why many retailers consider AdWords expensive, as they have always run search and display campaigns rather than trying out Google Shopping and if you get it right, delivers much better conversions for a lower price, which from a business point of view is of course a good thing.
There are many reasons for this, but when someone searches for something in Google and they see the Google Shopping results, they see the product image, the price and they have an idea about whether it meets their needs, before they even click through, which is why not only do we find conversions higher with Google Shopping, but we generally get less waste through it as well. From a marketing point of view, this is spot on for what we need. We also have conversion tracking in place as well, which means we can instantly see where we are getting sales from, which backed up with our remarketing, means the sales funnel is pretty in-depth.
Any business that spends money on SEO, PPC, Email Marketing or any type of marketing, both online and “traditional” has to make sure that they fully understand which of these avenues brings them sales, and by using conversion tracking and Analytics Goals is how we can see that Google Shopping really does work, and we find many of the other metrics that we base our reporting on also look really very good.
As time progresses, with consumers shopping on their mobile phones, a quick search with instant results just means that consumers can see what they need to very quickly, seeing the price, seeing the product and instantly recognising whether the product is right for them, which is very important if they are searching for generic terms or a product that might have variations of colour or styles, and as they already know what the item looks like before clicking through, customers tend to be further down the sales path and more likely to convert, which means the budget tends to work much harder for this type of campaign than when compared to other avenues.