The Basics of Google Shopping: How it Works | Featuring Speqta’s CEO Fredrik Lindros

What is Google Shopping? This is considered a pretty beginner-topic, but it’s important to address nonetheless! Especially for new businesses that are aiming to get their products discovered in a space where the competition are huge online marketplaces like Amazon.

To cover this subject for us, we’ve invited the CEO of Speqta, who, in the past year, released a new and competitive AI-powered feed optimization and bidding solution for Google Shopping.

More onBidbrain™ and Google Shopping below!

Hello! Before we get down to business, let’s start with an introduction. Who are you? And what is it that you do?

Fredrik Lindros: I’m the CEO of a listed company Speqta (SPEQT). A company founded with strong philosophical values, especially when it comes to accepting modern technology like Artificial Intelligence (AI.) One of our latest projects is a CSS (Consumer Shopping Services) solution called Bidbrain™ — an upgraded version of our Shopello Bidbrain CPO model — that we designed for our clients (e-retailers) who want to up their Google Shopping game.

Why did you decide to get involved in your industry?

Fredrik Lindros: As mentioned, we at Speqta have always been proponents of modern technology. And that doesn’t stop with me.The passion for innovation and change, in the end, was the deciding factor for why I decided to get into the work that I do now. After all, I’m a naturally curious person. And, being able to work so closely with modern technology enables me to investigate all that can be done with that kind of technology.

And as for Google Shopping specifically? What led you to that space?

Fredrik Lindros: Would you believe me if I said that it was just a matter of coincidence? Well, coincidence may be the wrong word for it. But it really did have more to do with luck and timing than anything else.

To be more specific, we were already pretty deep into the online retail industry before, since we were one of the largest online food communities in the world at the time. And our experience working in such a space allowed us to see how the tides were turning as far as online shopping goes.

When the verdict came out on Google’s monopoly in the EU there were tons of Consumer Shopping Services (CSS) coming out of the woodwork. And we realized that we could do that too. Or rather, that we could build something even better, smarter.

And so, that’s what we set out to do.

How would you describe the benefits of Google Shopping?

Fredrik Lindros: In 2018 Google Shopping Ads made up 76.4% of all retailer ad spend. And that number only continues to rise now, with early reports from January 2020 placing it on an even 80%. These numbers, on their own, should prove just how much Google Shopping campaigns are worth nowadays. But, to add to that, here are just a couple of the more common benefits:

  1. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Model: Google Shopping Ads (also called Product Listing Ads or PLAs) operate on a pay-per-click payment model. That means that you only pay for the clicks that you get.
  2. Targets Visual Consumers with High-Quality Images: PLAs are, first and foremost, image-based ads. They appear at the top of search results on Google with high-quality images that draw the eye away from regular text-based Search Ads.
  3. Targets High-Intent Buyers: Unlike social media ads, which are, by nature, low-intent ads, PLAs only appear when consumers make high-intent queries on Google Search, which naturally results in more conversions.

These benefits, altogether, allow e-retailers to generate new business not only faster, but also more effectively, than they would with regular Search Ads, previously known as “AdWords”.

Lastly, what advice do you have for e-retailers that are struggling to make sense of Google Shopping?

Fredrik Lindros: First things first, you’re not alone in that. Google Shopping is a task and a half, I guess you could say, and it’s tough for everyone.

There are two traditional methods for taking advantage of these ads: manual rule-based bidding or the use of Google’s smart bidding strategies. Both of which have worked for many e-retailers in the past couple of years. However, what I would suggest if you’re really struggling to catch up to your competitors is to try something else to give you that much-needed edge.

For that, there are third-party alternatives available. One of which is, of course, Bidbrain™. I liken our program to be a very sophisticated Japanese knife. Highly efficient at what it does with its advanced feed optimization and its intelligent granular bidding capabilities. As such, perfect for beginners who want something precise and sharp, something that can get the job done with ease. But, if you’re looking for something more rounded as far as functionalities go (not as advanced but capable of handling more than Google Shopping campaigns), there are also more broad marketing management tools out there — like the one offered by Adobe.