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3 highly effective retail PPC strategies to increase sales

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PPC marketing

With online sales up by around 10% from this time last year, retailers should prioritise pay-per-click (PPC) as their primary channel for the holiday seasons and the start of 2021. Hopefully, we can all look forward to better things in the year ahead but, first, let’s talk about how retail brands can maximise sales with some highly effective PPC strategies.

In this article, we highlight three powerful techniques you can use to take advantage of increased online spending this winter and put your business in the best possible position for the start of a new year.

1: Use dynamic remarketing

Dynamic remarketing takes the manual workload out of creating remarketing ads for all of your products. By using this strategy, Google will automatically create ads for you when users look at specific products, including the relevant product information and images – all of which is pulled in from the data in your product feed.

Once you’ve added the dynamic remarketing tag to each page of your website, you can create remarketing lists for the five following actions:

  1. Search results: when a user visits a search results page on your website.
  2. Item list: when a user visits a category page on your website.
  3. Item: when a user visits a specific product or service page.
  4. Add-to-cart: when a user adds a product to their shopping cart.
  5. Purchase: when a user completes the purchase of an item.

Using these events, you can deliver dynamic remarketing ads to users who check out specific products on your website, those who browse product categories or users who add items to their cart and fail to complete the purchase.

You can also target customers who complete the purchase with follow-up remarketing campaigns encouraging them to buy from you again in the future – eg a free coupon for money off their next purchase.

2: Optimise your product feed

Dynamic remarketing ads aren’t the only Google Shopping feature that relies on the information in your product feed. Everything you do on the platform depends on the quality and accuracy of the data in your feed so it’s crucial that you optimise and update your product feed.

First of all, you need to optimise the information to make your ads as compelling and informative as possible. Make sure you understand how your data is represented in your shopping ads. For example, the product title “[brand name] 500ml Reusable Water Bottle - Plastic Free - Black” may be truncated to something like “[brand name] 500ml Re…” in your ads.

So decide what the most important selling points of your products are and lead with these first – eg “[brand name] Ceramic Water Bottle - 500ml - Plastic Free, Reusable”.

With your listings fully optimised, you can add custom labels to your product feed, which allows you to structure campaigns and optimise bids for groups of products or individual products. So you can set bids higher for your best-selling products, highest-profit items or seasonal goods.

3: Set up local inventory ads

Local inventory ads are designed to turn local searches into store visits, which is something a lot of brick-and-mortar retailers could do with right now. By targeting people in your nearby area, local inventory ads show them that you have the products they’re looking for in stock, meaning all they need to do is pop in and pick it up.

  • Promote your in-store inventory: let local shoppers know that your shop has the products that they're looking for, at the moment that they search on Google.
  • Bring your local shop online: use the Google-hosted local shop front as a robust, digital local shop-front experience.
  • Measure performance: monitor the impact your digital ads and free local listings have on online and in-store sales.

This ad format is especially useful during the holiday season or those moments where consumers are in a rush to get their hands on physical products. This includes in-demand items that might be hard to find or products that customers like to see in person before they commit.

The three PPC strategies we’ve looked at in this article will all help you sell more products through Google Ads and Google Shopping, but this isn’t the only channel retailers have at their disposal. Amazon is now the home of more than half of all product searches and its own advertising platform is giving Google a run for its money.

Meanwhile, eBay has launched its own advertising platform which is comparatively easy to use but equally as powerful. And, at the same time, the likes of Instagram and Facebook are turning social commerce into an increasingly viable channel.

If you need help with your PPC campaigns, contact us at 02392 830281 or We are a Google Premier Partner and certified advertising partners with eBay, Amazon, Facebook and Bing.

Matt McCullough, PPC specialist, Vertical Leap.

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