Jake Gambitsky

by Jake Gambitsky | Shopping Campaigns

Looking for a way to spice up your Google Shopping strategy? Itching to boost conversion rates for your ecommerce business? Look no further than Showcase Shopping Ads. In early testing, Shopping Showcase Ads have outperformed traditional Shopping campaigns, with a 51% stronger conversion rate and 18% higher ROI. Why the large difference? Shopping Showcase Ads allow for extra images and product descriptions in your Shopping ads, helping to drive more clicks from more qualified searchers.

Google announced the Showcase ad format last year, and they’re now fully available for any advertiser using the new AdWords interface or the AdWords API. Showcase Shopping Ads offer a variety of features that give advertisers more flexibility compared to traditional Shopping ads. Let’s dive in and explore what these ads are and how they can improve Google Shopping performance.

Google Search displaying Shopping Showcase Ads

Shopping Showcase Ads allow you to display a larger variety of products. Image via Google.

What are they?

Showcase Shopping ads depart from traditional Shopping ads in two key ways:

  1. Longer Descriptions
    • Unlike traditional Shopping ads, which only feature a short product description and the item price, Showcase ads allow you to choose a 24-character Headline and a 80-120 character description line, which is only displayed once a searcher clicks the ad to expand it. This extra text provides a level of customization not available with traditional Shopping ads, which simply pull the product description and price from your Google Merchant Center feed. With 144 additional characters, ecommerce advertisers can now create a brand story or display unique selling propositions and promotions right in the Shopping search results page. You can use this extra text to leverage Google Shopping for brand awareness, highlight your company’s unique selling propositions, and differentiate yourself from competitors. Instead of attempting to distinguish yourself from your competitors on price or selection, you can leverage subjective factors like quality or longevity.
  1. More (and Bigger!) Product Images
    • Like regular Shopping ads, showcase ads allow you to upload a single collapsed ad image. Google will use the search query to automatically select two smaller additional images from the product group. These images appear larger in the SERP than traditional Shopping ads, allowing you to feature unique lifestyle product images, such as people modeling your products. With multiple large images, Showcase Shopping Ads increase the likelihood consumers see a product image most relevant to their search. In addition, the more customized, native feel of Showcase images is more likely to pique customers’ interest than the more standardized images in traditional Shopping ads. With Showcase ads, you can essentially show a mini-product catalog in a single ad, which will boost CTR and conversion rates compared to traditional Shopping ads.

Why use them?

Every ecommerce retailer should consider testing Shopping Showcase Ads, especially those with creative brand stories or lots of trendy lifestyle images of attractive people sporting their products. We recommend you begin by experimenting with the same ad copy that performs well for text ads, but you should test Shopping-specific copy to find the unique selling propositions that best resonate with an audience already viewing the product image and price.

Showcase ads are also great for any ecommerce advertiser that may be hesitant to invest in Google Shopping because their product offering is too broad. In the best case, Google would match a broad query like “winter boots” to a very specific individual pair of winter boots. Even if you are properly managing your Shopping campaigns to show your top-performing and most relevant boots, it’s likely that image is going to be irrelevant for a large percentage of “winter boots” searchers. Now you can feature multiple images and group and display products together, making it more likely that your Shopping ads will show relevant images for even the broadest search queries.

Given the potential for extra customization and strong preliminary findings, Shopping Showcase Ads should become a testing priority for any ecommerce retailer. If you have high-quality lifestyle product images, sell broad groups of products, or have a unique brand story to tell, try Showcase Shopping Ads!