Preparing Your AdWords Account For The New Google Shopping

On May 31st of this year, Google announced that it would be transitioning its Product Search to the new-and-improved Google Shopping.

This is a major change that has the potential to greatly affect companies that have previously enjoyed a high volume of traffic through Product Search. While Product Search has always been free, Google Shopping is moving to a purely commercial service, meaning companies are going to have to pay to show up in the results. While some companies may suffer, others have a great opportunity to pick up more traffic - that is, of course, if they're willing to pay for it.

So how can you be prepared for this transition?

If you already have a Merchant Center account, my recommendation depends on whether or not you have a Google AdWords account.

Don't have an AdWords account, but would like to keep showing up in the Shopping results on Google come October? Then it's time to get into the Google advertising game! Since this post is focused on those who already use both Merchant Center and AdWords, I won't get into the details about how to go about this. However, if this describes you and you'd like to know more about how to do this the right way - drop me a comment below. (I'm happy to follow up with you and provide a Google coupon for your first $100 of ad spend.)

Google's offering an incentive

If you currently advertise on Google AdWords, there is a limited time incentive opportunity from Google for those who aren't currently using Product Listing Ads in their AdWords accounts.

If you're asking, 'what are Product Listing Ads?' chances are you don't have them. Steps to creating a campaign for these PLAs and connecting your AdWords account to your Merchant Center account can be found on Google's Help Center. All merchants who create PLAs for the first time by August 15, 2012 will automatically receive a monthly credit of 10% of all their PLA spend through the end of 2012. This is a HUGE advantage - so don't miss out on this discount!

Merchants who are already using PLAs in their AdWords account can still cash in on the fact that they've been doing this all along. Google is giving $100 of AdWords credit to existing merchants who are using PLAs if they fill out this form by August 15th.

A lot of changes are coming this fall and are already in the process of being tested. Make sure you have your AdWords account in order and are ready for this transition - and don't forget to take advantage of these incentives by August 15th!