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Last July, Google launched the newest brand format for shopping campaigns – Showcase Shopping Ads, available via Google’s API or the new AdWords interface. This type of ad is ideal for improving shopping experience for customers who don’t quite know what they are looking for or customers who are at the very beginning of the decision-making process.

Showcase Shopping ads will appear at the very top of SERP for broad and generic search queries (such as “winter jackets”). In comparison to classic Shopping ads, clicking the ad will not direct the shopper to the landing page but instead present an expanded ad that shows off a catalog of relevant products.

The first click to expand ad section is free. You only have to pay when someone clicks on a specific product in the expanded section or spends more than 10 seconds in the expanded section.

Creation of Showcase Shopping Ad

• Create a new ad group and select the ad group type “Showcase Shopping.”

It is important to know that each ad group can only serve one ad because as of now, ad rotation is not supported by the new format:

showcase-shopping-ad-new-ad-format

• Select the campaign where you would like to add the ad group or create a new campaign.

Note that automated bid strategies are not supported for showcase ads, so you need to be using maximum CPE bidding for any campaign.

• Define your CPE (cost-per-engagement)
o An engagement refers to the user clicking on a specific product in the expanded ad or spending more than 10 seconds on the ad.
o The first click to expand the shopping showcase is free.

• Pick out the products you want to promote in your ad
o The best strategy is to create several ad groups providing users with highly relevant clusters (i.e. pick products that are highly affordable).
o In ad group, you can use all products or determine product groups organized by category, product type, item ID, brand, etc.
o Exclude product groups containing products you don’t want to show with your ad.

• Create an ad
o Header image (1080 x 566, JPG/PNG) – you can choose if you want to see the picture just in expanded ad or in both the collapsed and expanded ad.
o Headline (optional, 24 char. max.) – it will appear at the top of your expanded ad and below your image on the SERP
o Description (optional, 120 char. max.)
o Final URL – URL where the traffic is sent after clicking on the product
o Display URL – URL of the the website address that appears in your ad, only a URL of 25 characters can be shown on mobile and 35 characters on desktop.
o Ad name

Best practice

• Create several ad groups with different groups of products while using high quality images.
• Avoid having only one ad group with all the products.
• Pick affordable products with little competition.
• Use classic Shopping ads and Showcase ads together. Shopping Showcase ads won’t show as often and appear on broad, generic searches while Shopping Product ads will appear more often for product-specific searches.