Google Shopping & Steps to Optimize Your Product Images
The benefits of digital presence and google shopping matter most in the twenty-first century, and you might also want to know how they work and how you can optimize them. Fortunately, this blog is your comprehensive solution, and by the time you've finished reading it, you'll be able to understand how they work and what different ways you can optimize them.
What Is Google Shopping?
When looking for a product, Google Shopping photos are what a customer will initially see. It pays to get the graphics right since Google Shopping, a significant component of contemporary e-commerce, gives great weight to them. The portal allows for free listings and offers a very visual purchasing experience. Eye-catching advertising is crucial, given the popularity of TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat.
Getting your Google Shopping product data to feed right if you are a brand or online merchant is crucial. A successful online business requires high-quality photographs, the difference between a sale and a buyer searching elsewhere.
It pays to optimize your photos because they significantly influence client purchasing decisions when using Google Shopping. Your sales ought to go up as a result of this. Your campaign should succeed with well-optimized visuals and a strong product data feed. This section will focus on the regulations, recommended practices, common mistakes to avoid, and techniques for making your photographs stand out in Google Shopping.
How Important Are Product Images?
A new retail era is just getting started. There is a tonne of information "out there" on the internet about retail platforms, e-commerce shopping carts, etc. The problem is that these "full guides" consistently exclude one essential part, often even the most crucial one. Those are images of products. The importance of visual media is typically forcefully ignored in this advice, even though a business would not exist without it.
Images may express a thousand words
When you pause to consider it, it might seem apparent that physical retail selling differs significantly from internet selling. It's incredible how many people first fail to recognize this. Physical stores provide a physical experience; the goods may be held, touched, and displayed frequently.
Fortunately, most of us are more influenced by our visual sense than any other sense. Approximately 80% of the perceived information is visual, which is how we interpret the environment. Thus, sayings like "I'll believe it when I see it" and even "The camera never lies" are used.
Similarly, although product descriptions are fine and all, by the time we read them, we have nearly always already made up our minds based on the pictures. Rarely would customers purchase without a clear image? Your product photographs are essential.
More than we realize, our products' visuals have a significant impact. Here too, first impressions matter! Naturally, depending on the item, you will often want many images taken from various angles, one or two showing the thing in use.
This is the closest thing to how a customer might handle something at a store. Take a picture of the package as well, if it's suitable. By zooming in on the product photographs, a customer may examine them more attentively and better understand how appropriate the item is.
The quality of the image is the most crucial aspect of product photography, though. Reflect on how others perceive your brand. Even if you have the most incredible product, people will still think less of it if the picture could be better. That refers back to the earlier statement about "first impressions."
Product photography requires expert staging, lighting, and equipment to achieve the best results, as well as photo retouching to ensure that the final images adhere to the standards of an online shop or marketplace. Said an iPhone and a photo-loving coworker won't cut it, and attempting to do so would cause more harm than good.
Steps to Optimize your Product Images
The Google Shopping experience is entirely visual. All eCommerce platforms are seeing an increase in the use of pictures. In the age of image search and shoppable photos, paying attention to the value of high-quality visual representations while operating an online store is necessary.
When utilizing Google Shopping, the image is one of the most critical factors in a customer's choice to buy an item. The quality of your feed can be significantly reduced if you have the greatest one, which will help your total performance. The key to a successful advertising campaign is a healthy product feed with optimized visuals.
This post offers helpful pointers for optimizing Google Shopping product images. Here is the step-by-step guide to optimizing your product image according to Google shopping image rules:
Step 1: Optimize your Product Images
Google Shopping is a visually stimulating experience, like any eCommerce. Google integrates product feeds from retailers into category sites for comparison shopping and displays a picture of the item and the cost for customers. This implies that the most crucial aspect of your listing is the product photos. The answer is straightforward: follow Google's instructions if you wish to appear in Google Shopping.
Google is a data-driven business that aims to help consumers and promote sales. They desire your success. They are excellent at instructing you on what to do and, more importantly, what not to do. Before taking additional steps to set yourself apart from the competition, get compliant. Let's start with the obvious: abide by their regulations!
What to Avoid with Product Images
- Words on the picture: Advertising text is not allowed on adverts because clear photos of a product assist online customers in making informed decisions. Use the area devoted to the product description if you wish to include more text.
- Link breakdowns: The link must be readable by Google. It will only be shown, plain and simple if it can access the link. Keep your URL free of blank spaces and other illegible characters. Additionally, confirm that the URL is active and has yet to be changed or deleted entirely.
- Watermarks: Even though a watermark may seem like a terrific branding strategy, it simply comes out as unprofessional. A clear image of the product without any additional promotional features is required for every product in Shopping advertising. You can use watermarkremover.io to remove watermarks from your images automatically.
- Generic photos are wary of criticism that uses "generic photos"! This occurs when you accidentally fill the image link field with the default image, which is typically your business logo when you should have photos of the product.
- No photos greater than 64 megapixels or lower than 3232 pixels should be submitted (apparel photographs must be at least 250250 pixels).
- Only include several products in the picture if they are part of a package.
- Avoid using a background that is dark, colorful, or patterned.
- Any actions mentioned above will not only influence your sales but will also stop them. Google will either reject ("disapprove") your initial listing or remove you from their database. Using the "Google Shopping" order during post-production processing will guarantee that your photographs are compatible and Google Shopping-optimized.
- A few quick actions now will spare you the hassle of winning Google's confidence after rejection again. Google conducts regular quality checks, and if they discover compliance issues, it may result in account suspension and a tiresome review procedure.
- If you sell your products through various online stores, platforms, comparison shopping sites, or other channels, you can merge those into a single order specification. When the product image standards are compatible, you may submit a single order and be sure that your images will be approved at all specified places.
Ways for enhancing image quality
- The actual color of your product is revealed by light. Consider how the light will affect the image when taking a true-color shot. A product's colors are highlighted dramatically by light since it allows the thing to shine. Darker objects could require a stronger spotlight to stand out against the background, or a vibrantly colored product might benefit from softer lighting to correctly highlight its vibrancy.
- Reflection management is required for products that are too glossy. One of the most crucial photographic techniques is controlling reflections. While it's tempting to make everything appear brand-new and sparkling, those beautiful, dazzling things stand out from the page. It's crucial to think about how that shine is represented in a photograph; if you use too much, the product will lose its clarity and detail, and if you use too little, it will appear dull.
- A professional product photography company provides reflection control for excessive shine. Maintaining those reflecting parts under control and in brilliant color will make your goods shine precisely. They also have a say in what appears in your product's reflection.
- The tiniest product requires reflection control. Frequently, your smallest-sized products are also your best-selling, most expensive ones. It is appropriate to "wow" consumers while displaying a ring, necklace, pair of earrings, or another glittering object. Good jewellery product photography can quickly turn away potential customers, resulting in an attractive listing for your items. A ring, diamond, or other stone may appear considerably smaller than it is if improper angles are used. To successfully sell anything, it's also essential to use the proper lighting; a diamond must dazzle, and silver must boldly glitter.
- Clean shots Indicate Quality Frequently, after altering a photo's quality is not double- or triple-checked, resulting in grave Photoshop mistakes being shared online. To guarantee no flaws in the image that would harm your clients' perceptions, every image must be quality verified. Before a product manager, who seeks never to allow a mistake to go for print, evaluates the photo.
- Making the edges perfect makes your product ideal. When photographing a product, it's crucial to ensure that the object is distinct, crisp, and in focus. Making sure the edges are sharp and defined is the most excellent way to ensure a high-quality shot. The client notices something uncertain when an item's edges are fuzzy or unclear, whether due to the crinkled packaging, the design, or the material used to make it (a fabric product will always have fuzzy edges). Your item seems nice and clean to the buyer, with only a simple alteration that involves cleaning the image's surrounding area to give it a crisp edge.
Overarching principles of product imagery
The guiding principles of product photography apply whether you're adding images to your website, uploading them to an eCommerce marketplace like Amazon, or submitting them to a comparison shopping engine like Google Shopping.
Sales are increased with consistent, high-quality photos. Pages for each product category should be organized and simple to use. By continuously cropping and aligning, minimize distractions. Use a backdrop that is continuously white or light grey. Add dimension using shadows, and display clothes photos on the body to illustrate how they fit.
Step 2: Create a Google Merchant account
You may submit product data and develop shopping campaigns using the Google Merchant Center to increase sales. Along with the millions of Google users you're exposing yourself to, location-based Google services like "in-stock" availability checks can entice online customers to visit your physical store.
You might be asking how to set up a Google Merchant Account. It is easy to do so; you only need to follow these basic steps. Utilize your Google account to sign in to the Google Merchant Center. Your first stop will be the dashboard for the merchant centre.
1. Updating Business Information
Step 1 - In the area titled "About Your Business," make necessary updates to the display name, website, physical location, and customer service contact information.
Step 2 - Validate your website to demonstrate that you are the site's owner and claim it for this merchant ID. The verification procedure demonstrates that you are authorized to make the required modifications to the website.
Step 3 - Upload brand logos for the company in shopping advertising in square and rectangular formats. PNG or SVG file types with a maximum file size of 5MB are required for logo graphics.
2. Seeding Feed
Step 1 - Go to Feeds by clicking Products on the left panel. In Primary Feeds, choose the blue + button. As Google must know where you will sell your items, you will be asked for the country of sale and the languages while setting up feeds.
Step 2 - Just as I did, give your feed a name like "QWERTY" and choose the option to link your data to the merchant centre. There are four ways to add product information to the merchant centre: Google Sheets, Scheduled Fetch, Upload, and Content API.
Step 3 - Enter the file name and choose daily (preferred), weekly, or monthly as the fetch frequency. If your website's product listings need to be updated daily, plan the fetch every week. Please include the final URL where the data will be retrieved. Enter the login information if there are any password-protected files, or leave the field empty. Click Continue.
Step 4 - To begin the data fetching process from your website, click the most recent feed. The process of uploading the stream will start after you select FETCH NOW. The feed attributes, input method, date, and time of your most recent data retrieval are all visible.
Because the data retrieval procedure is automated, there is no need for manual entry. Your website will be crawled by the feed, which will collect product information for the merchant centre to either show naturally or utilize in shopping advertising.
Step 3: Optimize your Google data feed
What is Google Shopping Data Feed?
You might wonder, "What is Google Shopping Data Feed?" before continuing. Google's capabilities include product information in the Google Shopping Data stream. The product information from your store may be uploaded to Google Merchant Center.
First, construct a feed file that complies with Google's specifications and includes all your product data. After that, you can begin making advertisements by sending the data feed file to Google Merchant Center. You must manage and optimize the data stream to execute a successful Google Shopping campaign.
Using it, you can run shopping campaigns and market your products over all of Google's platforms. The Google Shopping data stream is what determines the effectiveness of your Google Shopping ads. You need to be familiar with the requirements for Google Data feeds to operate with Google Shopping Ads. Each item in a Google shopping ad has to contain several necessary data properties:
- ID: A unique code for each of your items
- Title: The name of your product
- Description: Information about your product
- Link: redirects to the landing page for your product
- Image Link: the link to your product's main image
- Availability: indicates the availability of your product.
- Price: The price of the item based on your landing page
There can be more variables in play, such as clothing and gender. Check out Google's characteristics list carefully, and include as much information as possible regarding your product. Most of them are self-explanatory, but a handful allows for subjective interpretation and might affect how well your listing does.
Concentrate on Google data feed properties
ID – This particular code helps machines recognize your merchandise. The most crucial thing to keep in mind is to let it alone. If you alter it later, you will essentially be listing your product again and starting over with a new Quality Score (in essence, the reputation your item has built with Google).
Title – Be descriptive, accurate, precise, and pertinent. Shorter is preferable since lengthy titles may be abbreviated. Avoid using too many keywords by varying them slightly, such as "bestselling, bestseller, best seller." Avoid being gimmicky and using uppercase, exclamation marks, and all capitals to beg for attention on the Internet. Any of those methods have the potential to get your product listing rejected.
Description – Google advises utilizing between 500 and 1000 characters even if you have a character limit of 5,000. Consider your audience when writing: Educating the search engine and promoting readers are equally vital. When you start your essay by providing technical information and distinctive qualities pertinent to your reader, remember whom you are writing for. Include blatantly evident characteristics so that you may be found by Google when a user is looking for particular forms, colors, patterns, or other design elements.
Image link – This must be the first image buyers see if they click through to your website, as it is the primary image for your listing. Use our prior optimization recommendations to make it gorgeous.
Additional image link – More product photos should be sent! The more photographs you offer, the better, since more excellent images have been linked to higher sales. When shooting clothing, get the front and back, each 45-degree angle, the left and right sides, and any important details up close. Submit these as an "additional picture" to your Google Merchant account.
Step 4: Add data feed
When you're prepared to list your items with Google Shopping, click the blue circular "+" button in the "Feeds" section. Remember that Google Shopping directs visitors to your website, so only include products offered there. When your website and product photos are complete, add your data feed.
Choose a category, buying country, and language. Google has substantially shortened the setup process. Selecting a language and proceeding to the first level could be feasible. The "Type" of the feed, which is set to "Online products" by default, cannot be changed at the time of writing.
The "Country of sale" is used by Google to decide where your product is displayed and shipped. It will have a preset currency that you may modify after setup. The "Language" is the language you use in your feed (think product descriptions). The country where the product is being offered will limit your possibilities; for example, a United States option can only be made in English, Spanish, or Chinese.
"Shopping advertisements" and "Surfaces throughout Google" are preselected for "Destinations." You may choose here where Google can advertise on your behalf. On the recognizable Google search results page, "Shopping adverts" are visible.
Although Google gives very little information about what "Surfaces across Google" entails (they claim there are "various touchpoints"), I believe it refers to services like Google Image Search, Google Maps, YouTube, possibly some Android-related opportunities, and whomever they currently have ad service partnerships with. It's ambiguous for a reason, and that reason is that the meaning is constantly shifting.
Name and input method
Make sure your "Primary feed" has a recognizable and understandable name. As the name won't be used to engage with clients and has no special requirements, ensure you and your employees will grasp it immediately—a company's, business's, etc. name.
The "input method" element of adding your data feed is flexible and depends on where you want to save your listings. To save your data in the well-known spreadsheet format to the cloud, utilize "Google Sheets." "Scheduled fetch" will be used to retrieve data from a file on your website.
The command "Upload" puts the onus on you and allows you to update whenever you choose using various technologies, such as SFTP or manual upload. You may use custom programming to integrate "Content API" with your website and dynamically refresh your feed in real time.
Pick the one that makes the most sense to you. The API is your best bet if you have developer resources and a complicated or huge feed requiring frequent updates. Sheets and regular uploads are the most user-friendly manual options. After Google released the Content API, scheduled retrieval seemed outdated.
The "Setup" stage for the feed will vary depending on the input type you choose. When using Google Sheets, you can use an already-existing sheet or have Google build one for you. Your data feed will start to display on the "Feeds" tab of your account after you have finished adding it.
Step 5: Shopping Campaigns
The Google Merchant Center (where you set up your data stream) works closely with Google Ads. If you still need an Ads account, get one up using Google's Google Ads (previously AdWords) setup wizard.
Shopping campaigns (how we market the items from your data feed) can be created in the Merchant Center or Ads but must be handled in your Ads account. Before launching a campaign, you must first link your Google Merchant and Ads accounts from within your Merchant account.
Step 6: Create a Smart Shopping Campaign
Smart shopping campaigns?
We might classify the Google Smart Shopping Campaigns, also known as Smart Shopping Campaigns, as a particular sort of Google Shopping campaign. Google Shopping and Display Remarketing campaigns are combined in one campaign subtype. They also consist of remarketing and lookalike audiences.
Thus, it is a highly comprehensive all-in-one for shopping. Combine your product feed with the information and components in your Google Advertisements account to display the ads to the best-qualified audience for sales using artificial learning.
How does it work?
Innovative Shopping campaigns function by giving the algorithm a lot of weight. To determine which clients are most likely to buy the items listed in your product feed, which you will have uploaded to Google Merchant Center, the algorithm attempts to gather data.
The Smart Shopping initiatives have a particular goal in mind. You can either optimize a previously defined ROAS or maximize the value of conversions. Step by step is what I advise you to do. Before focusing on your desired ROAS, maximize the value of conversions so that you may gather data.
Shopping Campaigns generate Product Listing Ads, which offer several advantages over standard text-based ads:
1. Your product photos are the most critical aspect of the listing. Shopping is a visual experience, according to Google, and Product Listing Advertisements may double or triple your clickthrough rate compared to text ads.
2. Anyone who clicks on your ad has previously seen your product and its pricing, making them more qualified leads.
3. Shopping Campaigns focus on advertisements based on your data stream rather than keywords.
More than one ad may show for a given search, increasing your chances of seeing a related product.
Step 7: Product Availability & Product Categories
Establishing availability on sales channels is the next stage in optimizing your product feeds. You specify the goods' availability by setting them to "In stock" for Google Shopping or "Available for order" for Facebook Shop. The sole purpose of product availability is to let clients know whether or not your items are available for order.
Setting product availability will assist you in avoiding spending money advertising goods you cannot supply. Here's a quick tip: you may use Socialshop's Product Filter feature to create criteria that prevent out-of-stock items from being displayed.
Retailers sometimes give product category considerations less weight. Nevertheless, it is essential for improving product feeds, such as:
- essential for product advertisements
- Determine which categories correspond to your sales channels.
- Expand your multi-channel initiatives using Google Product Categories as a starting point.
Step 8: Streamline your processes and stay current.
Keep the goods coming, please! The short- and long-term benefits of creating an effective production team and managing an effective product photography studio are evident. You want to start pushing items to your website and online shops like Google Shopping as soon as possible. You don't need to have a huge budget to be just as effective as a quick fashion store.
Maintain your Google Shopping data feed once you've put it up to avoid having your listings penalized by Google. Ideally, take advantage of the Content API. If you cannot, create a reporting tool that analyses your website or content management system and generates the information Google needs.
Advantages of Selling Through Google Shopping
Marketing data shows that Google Shopping has conversion rates that are 30% higher than those of text ads. Shoppers want to compare products quickly and readily as they become more sophisticated consumers.
Additionally, Google Shopping frequently receives traffic from more reliable sources. Let's now discuss some advantages of selling on Google Shopping:
- With the simplicity of payment, prompt shipment, and perfect harmony between buyers and sellers, you may quickly obtain high customer satisfaction.
- No need to be concerned about selling fees. You can get paid on a commission basis, depending on the kind of goods you sell.
- When you utilize a picture with a white backdrop, you get more qualified leads.
How do I optimize Google Shopping?
To optimize Google Shopping, you can improve product titles and descriptions, use high-quality images, ensure accurate and updated product information, set competitive pricing, and regularly monitor and adjust bids and budgets. Additionally, implementing a strong advertising strategy and utilizing Google's various tools and features can also help improve performance.
How do I optimize my business photos for Google?
To optimize your business photos for Google, make sure to use high-quality, properly formatted images with relevant file names and alt text, and ensure they are optimized for web and mobile devices.
How effective is Google Shopping?
Google Shopping can be a highly effective advertising tool for businesses that want to reach a large audience with their products. With its ability to display product information and prices in search results, Google Shopping can drive more traffic and sales to an e-commerce website.
However, its effectiveness can vary based on various factors such as the competitiveness of the market, the quality of product listings, and the ad targeting strategies.
Does Google Shopping increase sales?
Google Shopping can increase sales for businesses by making it easier for customers to find and purchase products online. With Google Shopping, customers can quickly compare prices, see product reviews, and view product images, all of which can help to increase their confidence in making a purchase.
How can I improve the visibility of my products on Google Shopping?
To improve the visibility of your products on Google Shopping, make sure to use relevant keywords in your product titles and descriptions. Use accurate product categorization and provide as much detail as possible about your products. Also, ensure that your website is optimized for search engines.
How can I track the performance of my products on Google Shopping?
You can track the performance of your products on Google Shopping by using the Google Ads dashboard. Look at metrics such as clicks, impressions, and conversion rates to evaluate the performance of your products. You can also use this data to make adjustments and optimize your product listings.