Google launched the latest iteration of Google Shopping a few years ago, and it’s grown exponentially since then. In fact, just between 2015 and 2016, the number of searches that triggered Shopping ads shot up by 117%. That’s why savvy ecommerce marketers (like you!) are already leveraging Google Shopping as part of their paid advertising strategy.

Shopping campaigns boast rock bottom cost-per-click (or CPC) and higher conversion rates than their AdWords text ad counterparts. But if you aren’t taking steps to capitalize on the Google Shopping impressions that don’t convert, you could be losing out on valuable customers.

What if you could be top of mind, front and center when those customers finally decide to convert? That’s where retargeting (also called remarketing) comes into play.

What is Retargeting?

If you haven’t heard of retargeted ads yet, they’re a pretty simple concept. HubSpot defines retargeting as a type of online advertising that’s “served to people who have already visited your website or are a contact in your database (like a lead or customer).”

Simply put, retargeting helps you get more out of your advertising budget by targeting internet users who’ve already visited your website, downloaded content, clicked on your pay-per-click (or PPC) ads, or interacted with your brand in some measurable way online.

We know people who are familiar with your store’s name are more likely to convert. In the same way that frequent TV ads work to augment our familiarity with new brands and keep other brands top of mind, retargeted ads ensure that new leads are able to get to know your business (before making a purchase), without slipping through the cracks.

By targeting these consumers who are most likely to buy from you, you can stretch your ad dollars farther and see better results at the same time.

Why You Should Use Retargeting

Now that you understand what retargeting looks like in practice, is it worth your investment? In a word, YES. There’s a lot of data that says, plain and simple, retargeting will grow your bottom line. It boosts ROI and helps you to use your advertising budget — limited or otherwise — more effectively.

According to Invesp, when you retarget display ads to people who’ve visited your website before, those leads are 70% more likely to convert. Retargeted customers are as much as 3 times more likely to interact with your ads than someone who’s never heard of your store before, too.

Despite the killer benefits of retargeting, it’s still a relatively new concept. That’s why nearly half of search engine marketers say it’s the number one most underutilized online marketing tool today. By getting retargeting right, you can put your store leagues ahead of your competitors.


Retargeting and Product Listing Ads

By now, you might be wondering how retargeting and Google Shopping can work together. Separately, they’re both highly effective marketing tools for your store — and together, you may have guessed, they’re even more successful.

Retargeting can work together with your Product Listing Ads (or PLAs) on Google Shopping in 2 main ways:

  • By placing your Google Shopping ads in front of a retargeted audience, and
  • By showing other ads across Google’s display network (AdWords, YouTube, etc.) to people who’ve seen or clicked on your PLAs.

In either of these scenarios, you’re multiplying the power of your Google Shopping campaigns by tailoring the audience to those most likely to buy.


The New Goal-Optimized Google Shopping Campaigns

It’s no secret that Google Shopping is Google’s answer to competing with Amazon for a share of the ecommerce pie. Google differentiates their ad service from Amazon in one distinct way: it’s designed for the advertiser. That focus is overwhelmingly evident in Google’s recently launched “Goal-Optimized Shopping Campaigns.”

Goal-optimized Shopping campaigns mark the first time Google has sought to combine their extensive ad network into one asset. The goal? According to Google product managers Tom Beyer and Roy Baharav, the new campaigns are meant to “evaluate all available signals and use machine learning to predict the likelihood of a search query to convert, so you can make the most of your budget across networks, products, and audiences.”

With relatively little brow sweat on your end, the new campaigns essentially extend your Google Shopping efforts, and remarket your products throughout search results, YouTube, Gmail, and Google search partners. So customers who interact with your PLAs will continue to see ads from you across the Google Display Network.

The power of retargeting, made effortless on your end.

How to Use Goal-Optimized Shopping Campaigns

Step 1: Add the AdWords Remarketing Tag to Your Website

In order to use the new goal-optimized campaign subtype, you’ll first need to implement the AdWords remarketing tag to your website. This enables Google to keep track of your site’s visitors, so it can show them your ads elsewhere.

To start, head on into your Google AdWords account. At the top, select the Campaign tab. On the left-hand side, click Shared Library > Audiences > Set up remarketing, then click “View AdWords tag for websites.” When you see the snippet, copy it and paste the code into your website’s common file or footer (if you don’t have either, you’ll need to paste the snippet onto each page individually.) Save and publish your changes. To make sure the code is working correctly, use Google Tag Assistant to verify the tag.

Step 2: Create a New Goal-Optimized Shopping Campaign

Back in your Google AdWords account, click on the red + Campaign button and select Shopping from the dropdown menu. From there, select “Goal-optimized” as the campaign subtype. After you choose the subtype, continue following the prompts to set up your new campaign.

From here, Google’s network and machine learning do all the heavy lifting to retarget your ad audience and set bids to make the most out of the daily budget you set.


Google Shopping and Retargeting: a Perfect Match

There’s no doubt that retargeting combines well to make any and every marketing strategy stronger and more effective, and Google Shopping campaigns are no exception. With the launch of goal-optimized campaigns, you don’t have to be a seasoned pay-per-click expert to use retargeted audiences to your advantage. Put in a little elbow grease up front, and then let Google take it from there.

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