How you business can generate more new sales using Google’s shopping feed without having to pay for Google Adwords.
This blog is going to share how I get thousands of free clicks from Google Shopping and pay virtually nothing! and what’s more I am going to share this secret with you. In this blog you will learn how to BOOST your website sales in 3 easy steps.
2 Ways To Get More Online Sales with Google Shopping
For most online businesses there are two main channels to increase the number of online sales via your website and both involve Google.
- Pay Per Click (PPC) Set up an adwords account, choose your monthly or campaign budget and off you go. Pretty simple but not always the most effective and we’ll discuss why in a bit.
- Google Shopping or now known as Google Merchant Centre – A few years ago this was a free service on Google and it would position your product listings on the first page of the SERPs (search engine ranking positions). This had the potential to massively boost the number of your online sales very quickly and because it was free it meant you didn’t have to pay out per click.But then in 2013 Google pulled the plug on free advertising and decided if you wanted you business to benefit from this prime positioning you’d have to pay for the privilege.
But there is a still a way to get thousands of free clicks from Google Shopping and we are going to share it with you!
Keep reading and I promise I will share how to get free product listings on Google shopping and save your business thousands of dollars or pounds, but first a bit more detail.
Is Google Merchant all paid traffic or can you still optimise your product listings on Google shopping?
Let’s look at what Google now tells us in our Google Merchant account. When you click on your account summary or product feed you will see it says ‘paid clicks’. No longer do we see ‘FREE CLICKS’ as we one did prior to June 2013
Okay so there are no such things as free clicks from Google shopping results then? Actually contrary to the data Google publishes in your account settings I believe there are still plenty of opportunities for free clicks.
How you might be able to get free clicks from Google shopping
I am going to share with you recent data(taken in the last 7 days) from live campaigns I am working on. For two separate clients who are spending very little on paid clicks via their Google merchant/Adwords account but seeing a lot more click thus than what Google is reporting.
The screenshot below is from my clients site, I am not going to share their name but I promise this is live data and not edited in anyway.
You can clearly see here the number of paid clicks in each month is around 16 clicks. Even if this was all the traffic they were getting the average CPC (cost per click) is far less than a regular text ad. So even if there wasn’t any more traffic their CTR is much higher and more importantly their sales conversions per click is way up. In fact so much so they no longer even run a conventional Google ads account with text ads.
Now let’s look at their website traffic and how it’s improved the same time they ran their Google Shopping campaign.
[I have removed the URL as I really can’t share this as it makes the site pretty identifiable but i have no reason to lie, edit, embellish or make this up.]
Want to get your products ranking at the top and not pay for every click? Keep reading it will be revealed further down!
As mentioned above we are looking for about 16 clicks per day from ‘paid clicks’ but as you can clearly see their organic traffic has increase by much much more than that. In fact they are getting over 200 clicks per month since we started running this campaign. And this is to just 1 out of 45 live products.
Could the increase in traffic be SEO related and nothing to do with Google Shopping?
Yes of course it could but I have been running their SEO campaign for about a year and have a lot of data on where their organic rankings are, how they’ve improved and where the traffic is coming from. It’s really not that difficult to monitor where your traffic is coming from.
Their SERPs have been improving but the boost in traffic recently coincidentally matches the time we activated their shopping campaign.
So does this mean Google Shopping is still open to SEO and getting your products listed for FREE?
I want to be clear on 1 thing, you have to pay Google to run a Google shopping campaign otherwise your account will not be activated and no ads will be triggered in the search results. See there’s FREE and there’s FREE(ish). But wait don’t give up just yet we are only talking about a very small monthly budget to activate your account.
I’ll buy that for a dollar!
The minimum budget is $1 or £1 if you’re located in the UK. This means your product feed is eligible to be seen in the sponsored Google shopping results. BOOM!
So quit being a cheap skate and invest your £1 or $1 and start taking over Google search.
How Google Shopping Feeds work and how to make sure you get approved 1st time
What i’ve seen you have to be pretty proactive with your Google shopping feed, don’t think you can upload it and never check on it. NO NO! Accounts that are left and not checked may get paused, cancelled or terminated by Google if you don’t keep everything up to date.
Why your Google Shopping Feed was disapproved or suspended
One of your products has a price increase and your shopping feed XML is not updated as well. This will trigger a warning in your Google Merchant account which means that product is no longer eligible to be shown in the search results.
Why your Google shopping feed was disapproved or suspended
You can see in the screenshot above this campaign/feed was updated from active to disapproved for all of the products in the feed. In this case it was down to a shipping rate change which was not updated in the actual shopping feed in the merchant centre account.
‘DISAPPROVED’ MEANS NO SALES
It really is that simple if it’s disapproved then Google won’t be promoting your products no matter how much you are will to pay per click.
How to make sure your Google Shopping Feed never gets disapproved or suspended again
Follow these simple rules:
- Make sure you have notifications turned on in your account and never miss an important account notification or warning message again
- Log in to your account as often as possible. I don;t care if you have 1 product for sale and don;t sell that many. If you want to make sure you are seen as often as possible then login in regularly. I recommend logging in at least once a day. For larger accounts 3 or 4 times at day at least.
- Keep your product feed up to date. If you know you have some changes being made on your website such as price or change of URLs then update your Google shopping feed at the same time.
How to optimise your Google Shopping feed to get FREE clicks – REVEALED BELOW!!!!
So now you have your merchant account activated and you’re paying for some traffic it’s time to take it to the next level and show you how to get more traffic from Google Shopping results without paying for it.
For non-believers or skeptics which I am sure there will be, then just do yourself a huge favour and try this. It won’t take very long if but it will make a big difference in how much traffic you get and how many sales you see.
If you are going to do this all we ask is that you like and share this post with as many people as you can. We’ve spent years developing this stuff and seeing as we are just giving it away it would be nice to get some credit from it. When this works send a screenshot or let us know as we’d like to share it.
This is it here we go and it’s going to blow your mind how simple it really is.
Google Shopping Feed works just the same was as entry level SEO does on a website or web page. Relevant keywords, content, optimised images and landing page user experience and on page SEO.
SEO Friendly Product Listing Examples
Product Name: Super Important so get it right 1st time.
Instead of having ‘Omega VSJ 843’ put ‘Omega VSJ 843 Slow Juicer’
Product Description: Again just like a web page META description make your product description super relevant, I don;t mean just spam either but i’ll be honest Google’s spam team doesn’t seem to be checking this right now and SPAM/keyword stuffing works. I’m not suggesting spam by any means i’m just pointing out what seems to work.
Product Image: Make sure the URL of your product image is optimised on the your website. This means relevant ALT text for example ‘Cold Press Juicer’ and SEO friendly image names such as ‘cold-press-juicer.jpg’
Surely getting your products listed at the top of Google shopping can’t be that easy
Might seem very obvious all this stuff, that’s because it is but it works! Just try it and watch how much more traffic you get. In many cases but I am not going to share a screenshot as it will be a dead giveaway who my client is but we have 3 or 4 of the shopping ad positions for 1 search term.
I love Google shopping it’s always been a fantastic place to promote products online and if you spend a bit of time optimising your product shopping feed you’ll see a lot more organic traffic and sales too.
Why Google Shopping is Cheaper to run than Adwords
One other thing to mention is lower CPC (cost per click) for Google shopping customers
Regardless of whether you try this or not Google shopping offers a much lower average CPC over the standard text ads. Probably because right now not everyone is familiar with running a Google shopping campaign so their is much less competition. On average we have found the average CPC to be about 1/5 to 1/10th of the cost.
Try it and you’ll see for yourself!
I hope this has been useful and you can benefit from this advice. It’s really not all the difficult to do and if you’re an SEO company you’ll really impress your clients with this if you try it out. If you’re a business looking to save money on advertising or more importantly see a better return on investment then it’s a no brainer.
I’ve said it already but if you liked this don’t forget to mention us! If you have any more questions on Google Shopping optimisation email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact SEO21 about boosting your Google shopping performance
Tom Peary is the director of SEO21 Ltd. Offering SEO, Website Design, Digital Marketing, Google Places Optimisation, Guest Blogging, Copywriting and Link Building Services.