Product Listing Ads

Google Merchant Center—Google Shopping

Google Product Listing Ads

Google merchant center is the way that merchandisers avail themselves of the Google Shopping Network, a network that displays merchandise from around the world and locally. This website has gone through a couple of name changes. It has also gone through a huge policy change—the site was originally free to users and monetized through Google Adwords. It is now a pay-to-play site, meaning that the site now charges advertisers to place their ads on it. At the time of the change, there were protests from smaller business owners who felt that they would be left out of advertising because of the many larger companies who can afford bigger ad budgets.

Product Listing ads are ads that list products and their pictures at specific prices—like yellow London Fog raincoats at $199.98.  The advantage to consumers with these product price listings is that they list many yellow raincoats on the same page, thus enabling shoppers to compare prices between two retailers directly.  However, because they are so specific, the ads are soon out-of-date and need to be replaced on a regular basis.  How regular is dependent on how often the price changes, which means that a retail owner needs someone dedicated to managing and maintaining their listing.

However, for those retailers able and willing to pay the price, the advantage is that these ads spread all over the internet, thus increasing the chance of selling an item at the retailer’s price.  Because the Product Listing ad also lists the merchant’s name and address, it allows retailers to maintain a fresh image in front of the consumer and keeps the consumer aware of new items on a regular basis.  Also, many of these consumers will buy in bulk, which generates savings for them and the retailer at the same time.

Product Listing ad management consists of first creating a Merchant Center Account, then either creating a new Google Adwords account or using a Google Adwords account which you have administrative access to. After you complete the listing, you will need to fill out a budget, and then complete the billing information for the product you listed. There are several reasons why your ad may not show up immediately. Google lists these in a helpful page. Google says this is simple—and it is, until you start listing several hundred, or even thousands of Product Listing ads on their website. This is because according to Google, each product must have its own campaign. So for the novice, creating google product listing ads can be a major job. Maintaining them is an even bigger job.