How to Set Up Your Very First Google Shopping Campaign

Google's Shopping Campaigns are here! Or will be, very soon. Get the lowdown on how to set up a Google Shopping Campaign for your products and take advantage of this new campaign type.

Now that you've been introduced to Google’s new Shopping campaigns, you know what it means for the future of Product Ads: new competitive metrics and increased transparency. And that means you have more tools and are better equipped to make informed decisions about campaign optimization and bidding strategies.  But the question remains: Just how do you start a Shopping campaign?  With this handy how-to, you’ll be a whiz in no time.

First, you will have to create an entirely new campaign – if you are already running a Product Listing Ads campaign in AdWords, it can't be changed over to a Shopping campaign, as they are completely different.

From your AdWords dashboard, select “Shopping” from the campaigns dropdown.  If you don’t see it there, don’t worry.  Google is slowly rolling out this campaign type and you may not be eligible for it just yet, but Google plans on having Shopping campaigns available for all US sites within the first quarter of this year.


If you are eligible for Shopping campaigns, you will see it has been added to the campaign dropdown menu. .

The most important part of any AdWords campaign is to set a default bid and daily budget. So be sure to set a budget that fits your business model, and a reasonable bid that will cover your profit margins.  It's always easier to start conservatively and ramp up your bids than to start aggressively and end up breaking your bank with ad costs.

Google allows you to load settings from an existing campaign, so if you're already running a Product Listing Ad campaign and want the same settings, it's that much easier.  Be sure to look at the advanced settings and set your campaign priority and any inventory filters as well, as this has a huge effect on your ads.  A campaign with a medium or high setting will be prioritized over an existing Product Listing Ads campaign.  If there are any specific products you don't want listed, you can create a filter to exclude them.  You can also schedule a start and end date if you expect campaign seasonality, or ad scheduling if you would like to pause at specific times of day or days of the week.


A Shopping campaign with medium or high priority will override an existing Product Listing Ads campaign .

After you have your campaign settings how you like them, save your progress.

The next step will allow you to enter promotional text to appear with your ad.  This can be a great place to advertise free shipping or to give a special coupon code to redeem at checkout.  Simply write the promotion in the text box provided and you’re ready to go.  If you are not running any special promotion, you can leave this part blank.


Product promotions are a great way to set your ad apart from the pack and drive traffic to your store. .

Voilà! Your campaign is created.  Google will read the information from your product feed file and you can create product groups based on the categories already established in the data feed.  Under the Product Groups tab, click on the + next to All Products.


Clicking on All Products will allow you to set up a new product group .

From here, you can divide your products up however you see fit.  Google allows you to set up groups based on category, which is the Google Product Category field that is in your feed file. For many merchants, this will be a sufficient level of product categorization, but it is also possible to categorize products by brand, item id, condition, product type, or a custom label field that can be inserted into your feed file.


Shopping campaigns offer many different options for product divisions. Category is a great and simple place to start. .

From there, you can divide your products even further into subcategories. Being able to view performance of each subcategory at a glance is a huge boon, as each subcategory can be given its own unique bid, which can greatly empower the merchant to try different bidding strategies.


Initial categories can be divided further in to subcategories.  The ability to get granular with your product categorization is a great feature with Shopping campaigns. .

And there you have it. Your quick and easy guide to Shopping campaign setup.  One special note is that if you are currently running a Product Listing Ads campaign, be sure to pause it after creating a Shopping campaign, as the two will compete against each other and run through your budget if left active.

If you need any help with Shopping campaigns, Volusion has a team of specialized, AdWords certified professionals ready to create, manage and optimize your account.  And as always, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them in the box below.