Google PLAs have changed the game of Search Engine Marketing. You already knew that. Old news. Although PLAs have increased Paid Search ROIs across the board, it was never the easiest system to understand or properly optimize. While improvements have happened over the course of the past year, mostly here and there, nothing has brought Google’s online shopping experience to the next level. Enter Google Shopping Campaigns. At heart, it’s the same set of PLAs you already use, now just far more intuitive making them less painful to manage and simpler to draw conclusions from.
Einstein Didn’t Have a Computer
Previously, unless you spent either hours upon hours breaking down your merchant center feed into AdWords compatible columns or you were an Excel Einstein, you had no idea what products were doing better than others. Shopping Campaigns allow you to drill down into product categories and delve into item level data. Additionally, this increased level of transparency means that PLA reporting is improved across the board.
Enhanced Experience for Consumers
Not only is it better for advertisers, but Google Shopping sees significant improvement for consumers as well. PLAs were always a bit clunky. They conveyed a decent amount of information but were not always straightforward and quite frankly didn’t look the part. This has been replaced with a more fashion-forward layout focusing on impact imagery. Listings themselves are also seeing a clean-up.
We know that PLA engagement rates are already very good; Google wants to increase that even more by emphasizing a ‘storefront’ like experience that will encourage customers to browse there because they want to, not because they have too.
What Does It Mean?
Ultimately this means, above all else, is that you will be able to accurately manage the performance of your online inventory thus bringing Google Shopping closer to a true online comparison shopping platform.