Experts in Comparison Shopping often seem to use a language of their own. The purpose of this blog is to translate the basics of Comparison Shopping into readable, understandable English for consumers and merchants.
Part 4: Manage Your Comparison Shopping Campaigns
Comparison Shopping campaign management is a complicated process that you want to do right the first time. Here’s some tips to organize your campaigns for long-term success.
Define the ratio your company needs to be successful on Comparison Shopping Engines (CSE’s). Do you need a 3 to 1 return? A 5 to 1 return? A 10 to 1 return?
Be realistic. Don’t expect a 10 to 1 return your first month.
Try to get an idea of how much your campaigns will cost per month.
How many products are in your data feed? 1,000, 10,000, 10,000? How much traffic do you anticipate to get on the CSE’s?
Check out the Cost Per Click (CPC) rate card of each CSE and see where the bulk of your products lie.
Like a stock portfolio, it’s best to have a diversified Comparison Shopping account. If you can, list your feed on the top five tier 1 CSE’s.
Note: If there are updates to CPC rates CSE’s notify their merchants. Most CPC rates increase by a percentage during the holidays when sales increase.
Before your campaigns go live check and recheck your data feeds. Make sure they take into account each CSE’s unique specifications.
If they lack the proper categorization or columns you will lose traffic and relevancy.
Many merchants fail with Comparison Shopping because they lack eye-catching websites. Can you do some things before going live on CSE’s to increase shopper conversions?
Linda Bustos, a conversion expert at GetElastic.com, writes about how checkout buttons with unusual looks increase shopper conversions: http://www.getelastic.com/unusual-buttons.
Another great article on how to optimize checkout buttons from Linda Bustos: http://www.getelastic.com/percent-off-button.
Do everything you can to optimize your website before you launch your Comparison Shopping campaigns.
During the first month monitor your campaigns closely. You will collect important data that will be crucial to your campaign’s long term success.
Essential: Install tracking pixels on your web site. This lets you track your sales, your average order value, and your cost of sale %.
Track your product clicks per day, per week, per month. Watch your spend on each CSE. At the end of the month you will have a better idea of how much you need to spend on your campaigns.
This blog post is part of a series I’m writing on the basics of Comparison Shopping.
Next time I’ll post some important tips for merchants to optimize their Comparison Shopping campaigns.