Using Keyword Data to Improve Google Shopping Campaigns

Google Shopping Campaigns can be a powerful tool for online retailers when utilized correctly. While

Google Shopping Adstraditional CPC ads are built from created ad content and targeted keywords, Shopping Campaigns will utilize product feed information to deliver product centric ads that give shoppers an instant overview of your inventory and pricing.

This being the case, some small business owners who manage their own accounts may get confused how to structure an account. Building search campaigns one could continue to add keywords or ad groups to target additional search queries or products. So if I sell  bicycles, I might already have a campaign targeting my 10 speed bikes that performs well. Based on that I might want to create additional adgroups for a specific line of bicycles targeting educated consumers. I might also want to start working on a campaign targeting fixed gear bikes. I would build a new adgroup or campaign, start keyword research and writing targeted ad copy.

When building Google Product groups you face the opposite situation. Turning on a Google shopping Campaign will automatically start displaying ads based on all products submitted to the merchant feed. So adding additional product groups doesn’t introduce new inventory to your Adwords accounts, it only segments the inventory Google is already using.

So with Google Shopping Campaigns starting as a firehose of all your data, optimizing them can be challenging.

Inspect Your Merchant Feed For Keyword Improvement

Start Optimizing by inspecting the quality of your Google Merchant Feed. Review your products’ titles for quality in information and be as specific as possible. Here is an example. I’ve been thinking about buying a double breasted suit. This is the year it makes a comeback. So I Google “men’s vintage double breasted suit” and get this result.

Google Shopping Campaign


Unfortunately since American Apparel titled their product “Mens and Womens,” the user sees an ad delivered that is less likely to be clicked on. Like traditional Adwords campaigns, clickthrough rates can affect quality scores and ultimately costs. It also doesn’t give the optimal ad delivery for a possible conversion. This being the case, be as descriptive as possible while avoiding generalizations that might cause the ad to show in less than ideal situations.

Review Actual Search Terms

A second tool to help focus an account is to look under the keyword’s details terms for actual search phrases. This is a great tactic to look for potential negative keywords in traditional search campaigns, and the same holds true for Google shopping campaigns. While you don’t see the account broken down by the keywords tab, in the details it will show you the actual searches that triggered the ads.

This can be an extremely useful feature. How?

  • It can identify negative keywords based on off topic searches. Just like traditional campaigns, there may be additional phrases that signify traffic that could still be in the educational phase of their buyers journey and may not convert to an e-commerce conversion.
  • It can identify high volume of generic searches for a product. Since Google has more freedom to deliver these ads than just our set keywords, this is an excellent opportunity to understand volume of potential traffic around various products. In connection with this it is an excellent opportunity to review what other competitor products are being delivered for these phrases. Does your pricing and image associated with that product reflect your best ability to convert to a possible sale?
  • It will expose under-performing products. Since your budget is spread across your entire merchant feed, you may want to utilize negative keywords to exclude specific products. It is a beneficial practice to compare the CPC for a particular phrase to the conversion rate to understand what products may need to be tweaked or paused through negative phrases.At Seapoint Digital, we're proud to



Bill has a long history in internet marketing, with a strong background in search engine optimization and interactive marketing. With a combined 20 years of teaching, he has spoken and trained at national and international events on the topics of Digital Marketing.