Croud reviews: Google’s new Smart Shopping campaigns

The latest innovation in shopping campaigns is here, following the launch of Smart Shopping from Google. These aim to maximise your conversion volume, by combining traditional shopping with dynamic remarketing. To see if this was as good as promised, Croud tested it against a normal shopping campaign, across one of the most competitive verticals – retail.

What are Smart Shopping campaigns?

Smart Shopping campaigns allow you to leverage automated bidding strategies to maximise conversions, by matching a user’s intent (based on a variety of factors including demographics and search history) with the most relevant products in your feed (through remarketing or targeted new acquisition).

Your ad will then be dynamically created and served, across a variety of platforms. Here are just some of the ad previews of what your ad could look like:

Smart Shopping Google

What are the benefits of Smart Shopping campaigns?

  • Simplicity: Manage campaigns easily as users are targeted through multiple channels without the need to create and optimise separate campaigns
  • Performance: Optimise performance based on your ROAS goals, with bids automatically adjusted to maximise conversions
  • Reach: Combine shopping and remarketing to reach customers across Search, Display, YouTube & Gmail
  • Seasonality: It’s easy to manage your campaigns during peak times; simply change your budgets and Google Ads will optimise towards the best value

What do you need to launch this campaign format?

As the main content of the ad is made up from your feed, the only additional element you will need is a lifestyle header image that “showcases your product or brand”, and ad copy for certain placements on the Google Display Network.

Sounds great – is every account eligible?

Unfortunately not – in order to qualify for this campaign format, each account must have had 20 conversions through existing shopping activity in the last 45 days.

Are there any drawbacks?

Only one so far – if you are running multiple markets in one account then you will not be able to use the same creative for more than one market, as currently the ad assets are associated at the account level.

Now for the important bit – what have the results been like?

As mentioned earlier, one of the biggest problems facing retailers this year is the increase in competitors, and therefore costs-per-click (CPCs), and shopping is no exception. Therefore, in order to test this new functionality fully, we launched this campaign and compared all key metrics (across engagement and conversion) directly with a regular shopping campaign.

One thing to note when testing this format, however, is that the Smart Shopping campaign will take priority over your existing shopping and dynamic remarketing campaigns.

Smart Shopping Google

After over two weeks, we have seen 900% more conversions in the Smart Shopping campaign, with ROI over 408% higher as well!

To find out more about Smart Shopping campaigns, and how we can help you to get the best results from your shopping activity, contact us today.

by Katie White
4 October 2018



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