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Essential Shopping Strategy: PLA Playbook Overview

Hi I'm Jared DeSisto. I'm an Associate Director here at Merkle in our SEM and Feeds Department, and I'm one of the co-authors of our PLA Playbook.

[whitepaper nid="6920" width="50%" align="right"][/whitepaper]So here at Merkle we have a lot of experience running PLA programs for some of the industry's top retailers. We wanted to put together a guide that outlines some of the changes that are coming to Google Shopping and a lot of the other things people need to be considering as we move forward into this new space. So the playbook starts off first with a high level, just an outline of the basics. So a 30,000-foot view of where the industry has been, where we feel it's going, and then other basic things that all advertisers need to know. What are campaign priorities? How do we set up a shopping campaign? And those types of things.

From there we actually get into more detailed strategies about how we can capitalize on the shopping programs themselves and implement new strategies for our clients that are custom tailored to meet their business goals. So we talk a little bit more about query funneling, how we can emphasize some of the best products for our clients, and things of that nature. And then lastly we wanted to round it out by talking about the four main areas where the shopping campaign business is going and four areas that advertisers really need to be focused on in the coming months.

So those areas being, one, mobile. That space is growing rapidly as we all know. A lot of advertisers are seeing their mobile moments where that traffic is actually surpassing the traffic they're getting on desktop and tablet. So considerations on the mobile front with PLAs and shopping, and areas people need to be considering there.

Then we talk a little bit more about people-based marketing and how that is coming to shopping as well. So using some of the tools that Google has had for a while now with ROSAs, being able to go after past site visitors, then also with the introduction of customer match what some of the results we've seen here at Merkle over the past few months from some of those people based options that are now available.

The third thing we wanted to focus on was emphasis on local. So a lot of our retailers have a lot of brick and mortar presence and we wanted to make sure that we're capitalizing on all the new features and tools that Google has at our disposal. The biggest of course being local inventory ads or LIAs. We get into the weeds a little bit showing some of the trends that we've noticed with LIAs and how much traffic is starting to pick up there and discuss a few things that people need to have top of mind when thinking about supporting their brick and mortar stores. Specifically with shopping campaigns and PLAs.

Then, lastly, my personal favorite topic is data feeds. So, getting into more detail about what information advertisers need to be providing to Google in those feeds. Some best practices that we have here on our team from working with hundreds of retailers across not only the apparel industry but house and home, electronics, sporting goods, you name it. So some really big considerations of how important high quality data is to Google and why that needs to be a priority for all advertisers moving forward.

So go out and download the playbook. And, as always, feel free to reach out if you have any questions or if you want to have a further discussion on shopping.

Thank you.