Google Merchant Center is a key tool for anyone with an ecommerce business who want to increase their sales online. It gives you the opportunity to create better adverts for your products, enabling them to show up individually in the Shopping section of Google’s search results.
Here is an example of what the shopping section of Google looks like when I type ‘red chairs’:
As you can understand, it gives to your product much more relevance and they appear on top of Google Search pages.
If you’re not already using Google Merchant Center, and maybe have never heard of it, you’re probably wondering whether it’s worth adding yet another tool to the several you likely already use. Google Merchant Center is extremely useful and helps you do things that AdWords or Google My Business can’t do on their own.
So, are you ready to boost your sales with Google Merchant Center? Let’s have a look at the benefits it provides to anyone with an ecommerce business who wants to succeed online.
Integration With Google My Business
One of the advantages you get with Google Merchant Center is that it integrates with My Business profiles and pages. Linking your Google My Business account to your Merchant Center inventory information shows which business your products are connected to. This ensures that you can have all your Google tools working together, instead of having your product listings and your My Business information operating separately. To link the two accounts together, they need to have at least one account manager in common.
You have better control with your accounts linked together and you can ensure better oversight of all your marketing activities. Here is a quick guide that will help you to link Google AdWords with Google Merchant Center.
If you don’t already have a Google My Business account, find out what it is and how you can get found on Search and Maps in the following video.
Adwords Integration and Support from Analytics
As well as linking your Google Merchant Center account with Google My Business, you can also integrate it with AdWords and Analytics. In AdWords, you can create a Shopping campaign, so that your ads can show information about your products. When creating a Shopping campaign, you use your Merchant ID from your Google Merchant Center account. You can choose to filter your inventory to show certain products in the campaign and target your ads as you would do with other ads. You will be able to manage your campaign in the same way you manage any other Adwords campaign.
You can also link these tools with Google Analytics, so you’re able to keep an eye on the traffic you receive from Google Adwords Shopping. By adding tracking codes to your products, you will be able to see how your products perform. Combining Analytics and Adwords gives you plenty of insight into where your traffic is coming from and how much success you’re having with your Merchant products and Shopping campaigns.
Develop Dynamic Ads
Google AdWords allows you to create ads with text or with images, as well as videos and even phone numbers. Having a Google Merchant Center Account gives you the opportunity to add another string to your bow for advert creation. The Merchant Center makes it easy to create dynamic ads that will catch people’s attention and show that your products are for sale. Instead of simply having a text ad or search result, they can see an image, description, and price for each of the products you list.
There’s so much more you can do with your listed products. It makes a lot more sense for an ecommerce business to have their products show up on Shopping than it does to only have text ads.
If you want to create your first Google listing ad, the follow Google Hangout video it’s a great way to start!
Automate the Review Process
Positive customer reviews are an essential part of finding success with your ecommerce business. Anything that makes it easier to encourage reviews from your customers benefits your business. Merchant Center works with Google Customer Reviews to make it easier to get feedback from people who make a purchase from your website. When they buy from your site, they have the option to opt-in to receive an email from Google, which asks them to provide feedback after their order has arrived. The ratings your customers give you are collected and displayed on a Google Customer Reviews badge, which is optional, so you don’t have to display it. You can also find your ratings in your Merchant Center account. Seller ratings are also displayed in Search and Shopping ads. You can add Google Customer Reviews to your site through your Merchant Center account, using the icon with three dots.
If your business happens to trade online and also has one or more brick-and-mortar locations, the local product feature might also be of use to you. You can separate the products you have online from those you have in-store by creating a local product feed.
Many ecommerce businesses won’t have any use for this, but there are plenty that operate both online and with a local business presence. If that applies to you, creating a local product feed could help to boost foot traffic to your store if you want to encourage people to come in and not only rely on customers ordering online.
There is also the offer to set up special promotions for your products, which makes it easier to display discounts and deals. When you set up a promotion, it adds a “Special Offer” tag underneath your product in search results. When you mouse over the text, an expanded box explains a bit more about what the special offer is. See below for an example of how it looks:
There are several different types of promotion you can create, such as free postage, percentage discounts, bundle offers and discount codes. There are a few rules to follow to ensure your promotion is correct and you will need to go through the steps to set up a promotion feed.
Google provides a number of success stories to show how online retail businesses have had success with their Google Merchant Center account. For example, Paper Culture was better able to show off their designs using the visual ads on Google Shopping. But it’s not just Google showing off their own satisfied customers. US-Mattress showed how Google’s Shopping features helped them. Through the use of Shopping campaigns, they increased their click-through rate by 30% and their average order value by 10%. They also reduced their cost per ad, so the new approach saved them money too. They increased their ROI and their conversion rate as well.
Google Merchant Center could give your ecommerce business some significant advantages. It’s one of the first steps to take together with automation to boost your sales online. Don’t neglect it as part of your marketing strategy.
Kevin is an experienced digital marketing strategist, director of Green T Digital. He built his professional experience over the past 15 years working both in-house and as a contractor marketer. He excels in a number of digital mediums and can help any company quickly grow and thrive in their current market.