12 February, 2013, London – Retailers may not be making the most of the opportunities afforded by Google’s switch over from free to paid listings on Google Shopping, which goes live tomorrow (13 February), says Summit, a provider of consulting, online marketing and ecommerce to retailers in the UK and Europe.
Hedley Aylott, CEO of Summit, says: “The percentage of retail sales that are made through online search continues to grow exponentially. While many retailers may focus on the cost of paid for listings, the opportunities for boosting sales are huge as Google adds new features such as catalogues, offers and shortlists.”
Customers using search in-store for price comparison will be the next challenge for retailers to tackle”
From 13 February or ‘G-Day’, retailers need to set up trial paid Product Listing Ads (PLAs) with Google and actively manage product feeds to ensure product data is as relevant as possible for target audiences that are increasingly searching for products not just online but in store which in turn can lead to both online and in-store purchases. Indeed, recent research by IMRG shows that 48 per cent of smartphone owners did some pre-purchase research from their mobile device over Christmas 2012, an increase of about 9 per cent on the previous year.
Merchants will have to pay to be listed on Google Shopping. (PLAs) will replace free listings in a transition period that ends at the end of Q2 2013.
All previously free Google Shopping Listings will be removed leaving just PLAs.
To continue competing for share of voice, retailers need to set up PLAs in Google Adwords as free listings will no longer show up on the Google search page and will be outranked by PLAs on the Google Shopping page.