Google has just announced that it is set to transition Google Product Search away from being listed for free by merchants who look to list their products to a more commercial model on the Product Ad Listing program. This means that all the free traffic merchants, who have been getting by for the past ten years on what was called a Froogle/Google base, will cease to be free and therefore turn into a paid service comparison engine.
This change to paid comparison shopping engines is bound to have a negative effect on ecommerce traders.
The big change: New Shopping SERPS are on the way
Google says that it is already conduct experiments with new Shopping SERPs which will include bigger images along with a sponsored tag or a label as an indicator that the space is being paid for by someone.
Reasons why the New Google Shopping is going to disappoint Ecommerce Merchants:
1. The new Google Shopping will create a rift to PPC managing firms and those merchants who regularly use Google AdWords – bidding at the keyword level and also creation of product text ads for specific ad groups. The new Google Shopping system will not work in this manner. Why, you ask?
• Merchants and Agencies will have to use to use a merchant’s Google Product Search data feed in order to submit to the new Google shopping. Most of the PPC agencies and merchants are not experienced with data feeds.
• Bidding will become product based and not keyword based. You will only be able to submit your feed and bid through attributes in the feed in the interface of Google’s Product Ads Listing.
2. Many small merchants may not be able to adapt fast enough to take advantage of this program and they stand a chance to lose out on sales and website traffic.
3. The possibility of increase in sales exists, but what will this cost? The new Google Shopping will need a high level of technical maintenance with the data feed and continuous optimization of the product bids in this campaign.