Google Presentation Blog

Refresh your retail PPC strategy for 2021

No one would claim that 2020 was anything other than highly challenging for retail and the outlook remains uncertain. Last year, British retail sales saw their biggest yearly dip on record (source: BBC).

However, according to the Office of National Statistics, online sales as a proportion of all retail had climbed by March 2020 to a record high of 22.3%. Another figure, from Statista gathered last year, found up to 87% of UK households had made online purchases within the previous 12 months.

With none of us really sure at this point when physical non-essential shops will open or what the long-term impact of Covid on the High Street will be, what we do know is that e-commerce could hardly be more important. This is likely to remain the case, at least for the foreseeable future.

So if you’re a retailer advertising online, it’s vital that you take a fresh look at your PPC strategy and consider revamping it for 2021, especially if you have been doing things in the same way for a while.

Here are suggestions for techniques which may help:

  • Discovery campaigns

Launched in 2019, Discovery Campaigns are native ads which show up in places like YouTube, the Google Search app, Gmail promos and so on. The idea is to grab people’s attention while they’re browsing elsewhere – many online searchers are on the hunt for shopping inspiration as they look around web-based content.

Google’s requirements for these ads, especially as far as things like photo quality are concerned, can be quite strict. Equally, they do mean relinquishing control over some things like bidding, placement, device targeting and more.

If you aren’t already using these ads, give the idea of doing so some thought.

  • The Microsoft Advertising Network

Only advertising on Google? Consider spreading your bets and taking a closer look at Microsoft Advertising. It can offer an excellent return on your investment in comparison with the search giant. What’s more, fewer people use it than they do Google, so it could give you the chance to steal a march on your competition.

In particular, consider in-market audiences. These are curated lists of customers who have signalled an intention to buy something within a particular category. They’re now also offered seasonally for special marketing occasions such as Black Friday or Christmas.

  • Smart Shopping campaigns

These blend standard shopping and display remarketing campaigns via ad placement and automated bidding to promote what you offer.

Campaigns run across all networks including YouTube, Gmail and the Display network. Give this tool serious consideration if you are not already using it. Google prioritises Smart Shopping over standard campaigns, therefore, it’s another chance for you to sneak ahead if a key competitor is using the latter.

Front Page Advantage: here to help

At Front Page Advantage, we’re ideally placed to help you refresh your PPC campaigns so you’re all set to meet the challenges of 2021.

Give us a call for an informal chat about the tools you use to do this and how we can help.