As discussed in our previous blog post (August 8, 2012) the free traffic source Google Products (formerly known as “Froogle”) is set to morph into a paid for CPC-model called Google Shopping early next year. Google Shopping has already been implemented in the U.S. (on October 17 of this year) and looks like being rolled out in Great Britain, Germany, Japan, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Australia, and Switzerland in 2013.
Google plans a final adjustment on February 13, 2013 to give online merchants the chance to adapt their campaigns. From then on, shopping queries will lead to clearly arranged results, which will be marked as sponsored ads, and will be located where currently the AdWords ads are.
The gradual transition to the commercial model should be complete by the end of 2013. However, advertisers would be wise to mark February 13, 2013 in their calendars. We would also suggest they make the following preparations ahead of the changeover:
1. Use the Product Listing Ads, which are currently available free of charge, to gain experience in product processing as well as in internal workflow management.
2. Ensure using the best data preparation possible, since it will have a significant impact on your listings’ quality and relevance.
3. Segment the products into specific clusters: the more detailed and granular the segmentation, the lower the chances to generate unnecessary costs.
4. Take into account the performance data, which might have already been generated in other search engines. Products that merely function as traffic generators should not be used with Google Shopping.
5. Use product feeds for the Google Merchant center, which is connected with Google AdWords.
Since, after the transition, the shopping results will not be listed anymore among the first ten organic results, but, as you can see in the screenshot, on the right side of the page, the question comes up if the organic results are gaining again in importance. However, this can only be confirmed after the official transition.