BigCommerce recently introduced an app called Ads and Listings on Google that allows merchants to sync their store’s products to Google Merchant Center. Once synched they can then be used for free listings on Google.
Google’s free listings appear in the Shopping tab within Google’s search results. This allows merchants with little to no budget for pay-per-click advertising to get a bit of a lift from shoppers looking for what they sell.
In addition to feeding products, the Ads and Listings app also allows the store owner to create Smart Shopping campaigns that promote your items in Google Ads across Google Search, Shopping, YouTube, Gmail, and the Google Display Network.
Smart Campaigns are managed through Google’s own artificial intelligence which decides when and where to place your ad without any intervention from you.
This is a great solution for merchants who are just starting out, don’t have an advertising budget, and just want to get their products out there. For established stores and ones using an agency to manage ad campaigns, this method of feed and ad management is not recommended.
As we migrate more and more stores from Yahoo! (now Verizon) Small Business, we’re often asked if our Feed Wizard service is still needed since BigCommerce will feed products directly to Google.
The answer is…. maybe.
Feed Wizard from Your Store Wizards is a fully customizable feed solution that not only feeds products to Google but dozens of other platforms including Bing, Yahoo!, and more. The data transmitted can be custom formatted using all your store’s custom variables/options, and can be unique to each ad platform.
The data feed from BigCommerce is simply based on your item’s general information and isn’t customizable in any way. You also can’t use it for any other platform except Google.
One of the biggest advantages of continuing to use Feed Wizard is that you can exclude items from your store’s feed. So, if you have items that are not allowed to be advertised online, don’t have a large enough margin, or you just don’t want to include them, they can be excluded from the feed. This is not possible with the BigCommerce solution.
While free may sound better, you will be sacrificing the flexibility a custom product data feed provides as well as the ability to list your products elsewhere besides Google.
For more information on Feed Wizard, or to help determine whether or not it’s the right solution for your eCommerce store, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.