We’re all busy. And sometimes it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day -- especially when you’re running a business, launching Google Shopping campaigns, managing product feeds, competing with thousands of other retailers, and trying to have some semblance of a life.
We get it. And we’re right there with you. So we put together a 15-minute work week plan for the busy merchant to help you stay on top of your Google Shopping campaign more efficiently -- and give you back some precious time.
Our goal here is to help you succeed by applying SMART goals to your Google Shopping strategy. In doing so, you’ll have a clear approach that ensures your campaigns are running smoothly without costing you hours and hours of unnecessary work. (Note: you can apply this strategy to similar PPC campaigns, i.e., Bing.)
Google Merchant Center
Let’s start with GMC. This is where your feed lives and breathes, so you need to be checking this on a weekly basis.
Minutes 0-2: Diagnostics Section. Spend 2 minutes going through the diagnostics section to look for account or SKU-level errors. For example, if you’ve made pricing updates on your website for the week (i.e., sale, promotions), make sure you have updated the feed data with the new price (applicable to manual feeds only; GoDataFeed automatically updates pricing changes from source data).
Minutes 2-4: Feed Optimizations. Getting your feed perfect takes practice. And even then you’ll still have to adjust and update feed content as needed. Spend 2 minutes updating stale feed content. This can include adding additional keywords into the title, changing the price, or adding an additional image.
Google Ad Campaign
Minutes 4-6: Review KPIs. Take a look at some of the more important KPIs to see if your campaign needs adjusting:
- Impression Share. Use this metric to determine if your ads could potentially reach more people if you increase your bids or budget.
- Click Share. This tells you how close you are to getting the the maximum number of clicks possible.
- Click-through rate (CTR): Use this to determine how often someone who sees your ad actually clicks on it.
- Return on Investment (ROI): ROI lets you measure how successful your ad campaign is by telling you how much profit you’ve made on the ads compared to the amount you've spent on them.
Minutes 6-8: Adjust bids. Based on how certain products are doing, you’ll want to spend a few minutes increasing or decreasing the bids. If a product is selling you may want to bid slightly more to see if you can land even more sales. If you’re getting clicks but sales are lagging, you may want to reduce the bid. Beware that every seller’s store is different, so what may work for some may not work for others. A/B test different bid adjustments to find the perfect combination for your campaign.
Minutes 8-10: Product Groups. Do a quick check of your product groups. If you added or updated a product, it may not have fallen into the intended product group (depending on how you structured your campaign). If this is the case, it could end up in the “all products” group and the bid for the product may not be optimized. Under the “Products groups tab”, you’ll also want to check out the “Products Ready to Serve” column to see amount of products within your product group that are eligible for the ad auction.
GoDataFeed (Or Other Feed Service Provider)
Minutes 10-12: Execute changes based on KPI results. Depending on what you saw in your Google Ad campaign, you may want to update your feed rules. Maybe you want to exclude poor performing products or maybe you want to update pricing.
Minute 12-14 Feed Optimizations. Getting your feed perfect takes practice. And even then you’ll still have to adjust and update feed content as needed. Spend 2 minutes updating stale feed content. This can include adding additional keywords into the title, changing the price, or adding an additional image.
Unfortunately for manual feeds (feeds not submitted via a feed management tool like GoDataFeed), this section may take exponentially longer. Even so, it’s a key piece of your campaign’s success; do not skip this.
Minutes 14-15: Check for errors. Make sure that you don’t have an error at the feed or import level. Take a minute to review the product validation to confirm that all of your products are submitting accurately.
Just like that you’ve mastered the 15 minute work week. There’s no need to spend hours sifting through copious amounts of data trying to monitor your feed. The key is to focus in on the most important factors and to check them consistently. Remember: This is a general overview of how to manage a Google Shopping campaign. Each online store is different depending on the type of products you sell and the audience you target, so be sure to adapt your strategy accordingly.