Why Feed Optimization Is Critical for a Successful Ad Campaign

Structured data and feed optimization are vital components to any successful ad campaign.

Serving as the primary foundation for campaigns on Google Shopping and Amazon, structured data dictates the ceiling potential on each of these channels.

Without the proper optimization strategy in place, retailers could be missing out on product discoverability.

Defining Feed Technology

Feed technology is a way to organize data and build a foundation for shopping channels.

There are a variety of services that can import a retailer’s product catalog and automate daily feed submissions.

Feed integration can deal with many intricacies such as file formats, image requirements, inventory, pricing updates, size, variations, parent SKUs, and much more.

Although many services offer the ability to upload a feed to your shopping channel, unfortunately, without optimization efforts, retailers are missing out on valuable marketing opportunities.

In contrast, when retailers optimize their data feed, this additional information, which is typically content related, helps Google determine where to place ads and provide seller relevancy.

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How to Optimize a Feed

There are several approaches marketers can take to optimize a feed. For this example, we will focus on the two most valuable areas for optimization: product titles and descriptions.

Just like a traditional AdWords text ad has a quality score associated with it, the Google Merchant Center feed has its own version of that metric.

When retailers launch on Google Shopping, it’s extremely important that the product feed is not only formatted correctly, but that it is enhanced and as comprehensive as possible.

This optimization process involves appending product titles and descriptions with relevant product attributes, while also addressing blank product columns. It’s a strategy that is proven to put shopping campaigns in the best position to succeed.

Optimizing Product Titles

Retailers are encouraged to optimize and refine their product titles and descriptions according to the way their product is searched.

Google heavily weighs the first keywords in a product title. For instance, if you’re an apparel retailer, you may want to focus on the most valued keywords, including “brand,” “gender,” “apparel type,” and “color.”

Feeds are industry specific; apparel and appliances will have different techniques. If you’re selling electronics, you want to be sure to include the brand MPN in the beginning, since consumers will be more likely to know the exact brand and model they’re looking for.

Google will typically crawl product titles from left to right. This means Google is likely to weigh your brand name more heavily than the product color because it is listed closer to the left or at beginning of the product title. Of course, the brand name might not always be the most important keyword, which is why retailers should always remember to list their variables in order of importance based on how their users might search for the product.

Optimizing Product Descriptions

Similar to product titles, product descriptions should be built based on what keywords users may be searching for. Retailers should also be cautious of product descriptions that are too long in length. Another best practice when optimizing product descriptions is to list your most valuable information at the beginning – or left – to ensure it does not get cut off.

When optimizing product titles and descriptions, testing is highly encouraged. Retailers should try out a variety of product titles to see what yields the best results per listing. An optimized data feed will take into account everything from keywords to inventory, audience, competition, and product margin.

When retailers are able to intersect this specific data with their product feed – that is where true feed optimization occurs. If executed properly, the result is a multidimensional campaign structure that places product data as the building block for a successful ad campaign.

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