Google Shopping: The Ultimate Guide for 2020

Guide In 2012 the service became part of ‘Google Adwords’, the well-known paid for advertising model and from this moment on, retailers were required to pay to be featured in the Google Shopping searches. The good news is that after nine long years, Froogle has returned, well kind of!


Free Google Shopping listings are currently being rolled out across all regions which makes right now an excellent time for you to implement your own Google Shopping ads because it won’t cost you a thing and you won’t need Google Ads either! There’s no clear indication as to whether this is a temporary change or whether it’s permanent.

Still, our advice is to take advantage of the free Google Shopping ads while you can as you will be in the unique position of being able to gain exposure and better connect with consumers immediately.

If you’re an existing user of Google Shopping Ads, you won’t need to do anything to take advantage of your free listings. For new users of Google Merchant Centre, the onboarding process is currently being streamlined. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves! This announcement is excellent news, but first, let’s rewind a little and talk about online shopping.

It is, of course, an activity that most of us participate in regularly and in this era of ‘Want it now. Got to have it now.’ it’s easier than ever to shop online and to own anything our hearts desire, and quickly. The only downside to online shopping is the time-consuming process of comparing products.

This can be frustrating when you are clicking between websites – but of course is where ecommerce platforms such as AmazoneBay and Etsy come into their own. And so too does Google Shopping. If you are not familiar with Google shopping, nor utilising it to advertise your products, read on to understand how it can help you. 

What is Google Shopping?

Powered by Google, arguably the most significant search engine there is, technically, Google Shopping isn’t an ecommerce platform or a marketplace in the way that Amazon, eBay and Etsy are. However, from a buyer’s perspective, it does provide the opportunity to browse and compare physical products from different retailers, based on your search query very quickly. This is also known as Comparison Shopping.

If someone searches for a product you sell, Google shows relevant ‘shopping’ ads for your product, alongside your competitors’ ads. In fact, you are likely familiar with Google Shopping already – you just didn’t realise it, as Google Shopping results show up in the search as small thumbnail images along with the retailer, price and sometimes other retailer-specific information too.

From a seller’s point of view, Google Shopping is highly beneficial. Supported in over 40 countries, sellers can advertise their products in a visually appealing way, and buyers are sent directly to the seller’s website to make their purchase. It’s a win-win.

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How Does Google Shopping Work?

Google’s algorithms process a product feed which contains your store’s product data – product names, descriptions, price and images.

This data is used to match your products with relevant search queries and to create your ads.

Searchers will see Google Shopping ads containing an image of your product, the price and any additional info.

When a buyer clicks, they will go directly to your website or store.

Up until recently, Google charged on a Pay Per Click (PPC) basis. Currently, however, free Google Shopping ads are being rolled out, so the service is free!

Why Use Google Shopping?

Google Shopping is highly visual and highly visible.

Often when searching for a product online, as a buyer, you’ll be met with millions of text-based results. This can be overwhelming, and of course, most of us won’t scroll past page one.

For sellers, Google Shopping ads stand out! They put you in the spotlight and typically appear across the top of the search results and include images, often colourful, making them tempting for potential buyers to click through to. In a world where many people make mobile purchases, this is particularly advantageous as Google Shopping ads feature first on-screen.

Alternatively, searchers can click on the ‘shopping’ tab and go directly through to more detailed versions of the Google Shopping ads

Google is the ‘Go-To’ Search Engine

Google is where many people will start their search for a product before they go to Amazon, eBay or specific niche websites. By advertising on Google Shopping, you can put yourself in front of your potential customers at the exact moment they are looking for a product.

Google Shopping Converts

According to Marketing ChartsGoogle Shopping is proven to have a 30% higher conversion rate than standard text-based ads. The reason for this appears to be because by using Google Shopping ads, your products can be seen directly by customers searching for that item. There is also a strong focus on the product image and the price rather than other information that is often deemed less critical to buyers.

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Google Shopping Gives You Multiple Sales Opportunities

Your Google Shopping ads will show up multiple times on Google search engine results pages (SERPS). So, this means your product can be found as a website result, a text-only result and a shopping result.

Google Works For You

With your Google Shopping ads, Google will automatically pull in the data from your website or store, create ads for your products and match them with all relevant search queries. Little effort is required by you once the set-up process is complete.

Google Shopping Levels The Playing Field

Businesses of all sizes can use Google Shopping, thus leveling the playing field and making it the perfect channel to create not only brand awareness but also to bring leads and sales.

What You’ll Need To Use Google Shopping

The truth is, Google Shopping is a little tricky to set up, but once it’s done, apart from a few tweaks, little effort is required as Google does the work for you.