product listing ads

Product Listing Ad Campaigns: How to Grow Traffic 35%

We frequently get the question from retailers: how should I structure my Product Listing Ads campaigns?

It’s an important question, because campaign structure optimization has been a key driver of year over year growth for our clients. We’ve seen a 35% increase in daily traffic simply by following this recommended approach to product listing ads campaign structure.

So, how do you achieve this growth?

Identify your best selling SKUs

The first step is to identify top performing products or groups of products within your catalog that offer opportunities for more aggressive bidding. Within every product catalog are the products and product segments that outperform the rest of the catalog.

Armed with data about your product catalog performance on your own ecommerce website, study your historical performance specifically on Google PLA to see which products are contributing the most to your sales coming through that channel. High performing products might be found within a specific category or brand, or there may be individual SKUs within your catalog that are outperforming.

Create more granular product targets

Once you’ve identified your top performers, work to create a more granular product target structure around these products – this provides you with greater control over these product segments. Bid more aggressively on these targets, thus providing your best selling products the most visibility in your overall campaign. You will generate disproportionately larger additional traffic and sales from those smaller subsets of products within your overall catalog.

Track the performance of your newly created targets and adjust bids to further increase exposure of your top sellers. Look for opportunities to create further granularity in your product targets where it makes sense and where there’s even greater opportunity to apply incremental budget via more aggressive bidding. Now let’s look at two examples of how to develop a more granular campaign structure based on product level insights.

Create targets based on product attributes

product listing ads

In this example, we have separate ad groups for each gender of shoes. Within the ad group for women’s shoes, we find that heels are performing better for us that other shoe types. So we break Women’s Shoes out by a secondary attribute based on the product type Heels.

We drill down even further by including a third attribute for each product, such as using the Color attribute to creating a product target for Black Heels. In this way we’re able to better target and better market those higher performing products.

You want to keep refining your campaign structure to get to the point where you’re optimizing your bids down to the product level or down to the style level, maybe grouping all styles of a similar type of shoe or product within a single product target and maximizing the reach and frequency that those products are being served in your Product Listing Ads campaign.

Create targets based on price and margin

product listing ads

In a second example, we build out a more complex structure that takes price and margin into account. First, we have broken out a Watches category based on product type. We’ve then drilled down within the Watches category to create 2 additional product targets with increasing granularity. The first — Rolex watches – is based on a secondary attribute of Brand.

But the second product target — High Margin Rolex Watches — is a dynamic assortment we are creating based on a price and profit margin data. By creating increasingly granular product targets for these 3 different groups of watches, we’re able to spend more aggressively for High Margin Rolex Watches resulting in a lift in traffic while still delivering a higher return on ad spend (ROAS) than our other categories offer us.

Need help? Scale with CommerceHub


Depending on the number of products in your feed, the effort needed to create, maintain and further refine a granular enough campaign structure may be daunting, in spite of the clear benefits of doing so.

This is where our software platform for Product Listing Ads shines. Our Campaign Manager provides visibility into performance by time period down to a product level to help you identify which products are your best performers on Google Product Listing Ads. Armed with this data, you can easily create new product targets for those products.

Thanks to our product, inventory, and price feed integrations, our platform stores and exposes the attributes that allow you to drill into your product catalog create dynamic product segments. You can create a category target for watches, and any new watches added to your your product feed are automatically included in that product target. Add a brand condition like Rolex to a new product target, and you can optimize any new Rolex products and automatically include them in your Rolex product target.

In fact, you can drill down via any attributes available on CommerceHub’s DemandStream platform, including price, inventory status and even gross margin. This allows you to create product targets such as the one in our High Margin Rolex Watches example that includes products priced above $5000 with a gross margin over 40%.

With feed management and campaign management housed in one integrated software platform, we can ensure consistency between what is in your Google Merchant Center product feed and your AdWords account, eliminating the extra verification work required when setting up the underlying AdWords groupings and AdWords labels used to create the more granular product targets.

Once you’ve set up your targets, you can set and manage bids right from the same interface. And you can use our Bid Rules to automate bids for those product targets. Our integrated tracking, reporting and analytics will close the loop and provide the key feedback needed to continue to evaluate and refine the structure for your Product Listing Ads campaigns.