Google introduces Shopping Ads to image search

On May 16th Google announced that your ads would be automatically eligible to show on image searches as part of the Google Search Network. This means that your PLAs for related products will appear as shoppers browse through Google Images; making it even easier to click-through and buy.

What should you expect?

For the retailer with PLAs, this is a massive plus. Fitting nicely at the top of the funnel, it is no surprise that Google has sought to monetise image search. Ruth Atwood of 4Ps Marketing stated; "It makes sense because so many users take a visually-led focus when it comes to picking out a product to buy."

On the flip-side however; we all know how difficult it can be to make headway in organic listings. Unfortunately, with the introduction of ads above image searches, you can now also expect to see a drop in organic traffic from image results.

Resulting in a loss of real estate for organic listings; most predominantly on mobile, PLAs in image search clearly states Google's attitude towards mobile consumers and influencing the purchase. "Typically on Google Image search all results are organic and take up approximately 66% of the screen above the fold. With the introduction of Image Ads this drops to about 25%" said Max Holloway of Pi Datametrics.

What do we think?

Aptly named New ways to be there and be useful for mobile shoppers, Google explained, "Whether they're looking for a new sofa or the perfect pair of earrings, people who search and shop on their smartphones at least once a week say that product images are the shopping feature they turn to most. And it turns out, the top questions Google Images users ask us are 'What's the price of this?' and 'Where can I buy it?'

That's why we are introducing Shopping ads on image search. Now your ads for related products will appear as shoppers browse Google Images, so they can easily click through to buy from you."

PLAs in Google Image Search

Will it benefit you?

For those in fast fashion and luxury goods, it's time to get excited. Showing product alongside similar images will help deliver visually inspiring content which may well help consumers to develop the emotional attachment brands work so hard to achieve. Yelena Ascheberger, Vice President of Digital Communication, PR & Events at Swarovski has said; "We're thrilled to be able to leverage Google's newest formats, particularly Shopping ads on image search which will allow us to engage shoppers and inspire them to desire our brand as they're browsing and discovering products in our categories."

We have all recognised in recent years that imagery and content are the most powerful tools for ecommerce and retail websites. With this in mind, PLA ads in image search should help retailers to accelerate sales and growth. PLAs and shopping campaigns will work in the same manner, but your ads will now automatically be eligible to show on image search.

New to Google Shopping or want to improve your ROMI? Our experienced team of Google Certified Partners can set up and optimise your PLAs to increase revenue from paid search. For more information call 01344 266 844 today.

Catherine Durham

Catherine Durham

Digital Marketing Manager (Dip DigM)

Digital Marketing Manager at Netmatter, Catherine Durham graduated in Press & Editorial Photography. She has since gone on to work in digital marketing and ecommerce, with experience in SEO, copywriting, design and photography.

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