An eCommerce business owner may believe Shopping will be the most viable option for their advertising efforts with Google Ads. If you are unfamiliar with a Google Shopping advertisement, it’s when an image of the product populates after someone types in the search query into Google.

In the image below, you will see the shopping advertisements are the ones with the pictures. For the standard PPC advertisement,  there is no image that populates (I’ve labeled the standard PPC as Google PPC in the screen shot). Many believe the shopping advertisement will have a higher conversion rate percentage for an eCommerce business because people can actually see the product.

Difference Between Shopping Ads and PPC Advertisements
The reason Google Shopping advertisements can be dangerous is because you don’t get to bid on the keywords. Google is scanning your product information from your Google Shopping Feed and from the product page on your website. This means you don’t have complete control of the keywords people are typing in to find your product, which can be costly.

In the product example above, Glytone has an ingredient in it called Glycolic Acid. Since this is listed on the webpage of this advertiser, Google could think this is a keyword people will search for and want to buy the mild gel cleanser. While in reality, this keyword will very rarely convert for this product. People who are typing in, “Glycolic Acid” are doing more research for terms like, “Glycolic Acid benefits.” Yet if someone were to search for Glycolic Acid, the shopping advertisement would like show.

The benefit of Google PPC advertisements is you have complete control of the queries people search prior to your advertisements populating. There are different bidding options, which is broad match, broad match modifier, phrase match and exact match. Search Engine Watch identified not understanding match types can be one of the most costly PPC mistake. If you hire a PPC company who knows what they’re doing (like us!)  you can have great control of when your advertisements will populate based on the exact query people type in. This is the benefit of PPC vs. Shopping.

For each one of our eCommerce clients, we analyze whether Google Shopping or Google PPC is more profitable. Often times, it is  a blended approach. Within Shopping, if you monitor your search terms religiously and bid appropriately based on the profit margin and price of your product, you can win big. On the PPC side, while the standard ads may not look as sexy as the image advertisements, they can convert really well based on the overall control you have on the campaign.

Regardless, whether you are running Shopping advertisements or PPC advertisements, you need to ensure the landing page and website is flawless, otherwise, this can impact your ad performance and quality score. A great PPC campaign can drive quality traffic to a website but the design needs to be stellar in order to convert.