Google Adwords vs. Comparison Shopping Engines


shopping feed management


The Difference Between Google Adwords and a Shopping Engine Like Google Shopping


shopping-feed-google-adwords-vs-shoppingLet’s talk about the difference between Google Shopping and the king of PPC advertising, Google Adwords. Google Adwords is the largest online advertising service in the world and it will undoubtedly expand your target audience with a well-managed campaign.

Both Shopping and Adwords are tools that any retailer can use to attempt to reach a larger audience and reel in new customers. I’m not going to lie, Adwords can get pretty complicated, but there are certain aspects of it that are similar to running a CSE campaign.

To start, you’re going to be doing some bidding. In Google Shopping, you bid on products and in Adwords you’ll bid on common search terms called keywords. Generally speaking, your CPCs for Adwords keywords will be much higher(~$1-2) than your CSE product CPCs. One of the biggest aspects of an Adwords campaign will be ad copy testing, or in other words, seeing which keywords are converting well for you and optimizing search terms and phrases based on this info.

Second, and contrary to CSE campaigns, you won’t have to submit a data or shopping feed. Instead, you’ll simply be managing the separate ads you’ll want to be live, and these are your campaigns. When you log into your merchant page on Adwords, you’ll be able to create ad groups. Ad groups are also at the core of the structure of a Google Shopping campaign. Thus, a huge similarity between the two, is that they both function within the Adwords interface.

Each ad group will have its own match type. A match type of “” will mean that a search query needs to contain whatever word or phrase you want to have in the double quotations. Another match type is [ ], meaning the whole search query needs to be that exact phrase you specify in the brackets. You can also just bid on one specific keyword.  A big part of this process early on is keyword research, or seeing which terms Google users are actually searching for.  Check out the free Google Keyword Research tool to start.

Adwords will require some reading up on your behalf, but the benefits are great. You’ll be able to target a larger, more qualified audience (if your keywords are specific) and ad groups provide a more direct way of trying to outreach to customers than CSEs. One of the best ways to learn about Adwords is from Google itself, and here’s a nice introductory video. If you’re thinking about signing up for Adwords, check out this overview.

Likening Google Adwords and Google Shopping is a small digression, but a necessary distinction.  Let’s learn about the major comparison shopping engines out there today.

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