ROI Revolution recently analyzed its e-commerce clients using the AdWords and Bing networks to see what paid search trends and opportunities awaited e-commerce merchants in 2017. Today, we’ll take a look at their 2017 E-Commerce Paid Search Report.
E-Commerce Paid Search Metrics Across Devices and Ad Networks
When it comes to e-commerce, the devices your consumers use and the networks on which you advertise can make a world of difference. The following metrics compare mobile, desktop and tablets as well as advertising giants Google and Bing.
E-commerce growth is fueled by the rise in mobile devices (which have 47 percent of click share), and Google has a near-monopoly in the mobile space. Larger screens and mobile optimization contribute to positive e-commerce experiences that make users more comfortable buying on their phones and other devices.
Desktop clicks have held rather steady overall, however (see second graph below). Further, while it’s certainly wise to invest plenty in your mobile e-commerce strategy, such as Google Shopping (the dominant mobile search ad format), remember that mobile searches often lead to desktop purchases.
For a deeper understanding on mobile, paid search and e-commerce, check out our post on: How Mobile Has Changed the Way We View Search Results and Ads.
Optimizing Mobile for E-Commerce Paid Search
Mobile optimization for e-commerce goes well beyond website design – it takes more than fitting well on the screen to create a positive user experience. Even if you’ve created a mobile-friendly site, slow speeds and tedious checkouts can lead to higher rates of abandonment and lower rates of conversion.
In addition, slow load times can impact your Ad Rank, Quality Score and advertising costs on Google. If long wait times negatively affect overall user experience, they will negatively affect your ability to compete.
Optimize your customers’ mobile speed experience by shaving as little as one second off load time, and maybe even increase your conversion rate by up to 27 percent (according to Google’s data). Google also recommends integrating third-party mobile-optimized payment processors such as PayPal, Apple Pay and Amazon Payments. Test your speeds with a tool like WebPageTest, as your own page refreshes may not reflect how long things take for new and/or repeat visitors.
Keep in mind that, according to some data, consumers aren’t all that happy with mobile advertising, and poor loading is a reason stated by 48 percent of those asked. Speeding this up will not only help you out, but will be your contribution to improving the mobile advertising industry overall.
The Power of Google Shopping
Google Shopping ads bring in more than 50 percent of all Google paid search clicks across devices. Mobile is a driving force behind this strength. On desktop, however, text ads are still more powerful, with Shopping ads only bringing in 42 percent of clicks.
For text ads, success hinges on the entire process: keywords, ads, ad groups and landing pages. With Google Shopping ads, it’s about maintaining a great product feed.
Despite text ads still dominating, their click share has declined on desktops and tablets. On the other side of the coin, text ads have increased both of those metrics on mobile, yet are still second to Shopping ads in the mobile space.
For e-commerce retailers, it’s important to remember that the increasing sizes of both Shopping and text ads on mobile means less above-the-fold space for organic results.
Google vs Bing in Mobile E-Commerce
I mentioned earlier that Google rules mobile e-commerce space, and it does so with a 45 percent year-over-year click growth rate, even in the face of some slowed growth.
Bing and Yahoo cannot say the same. Their year-over-year click growth rates have declined on every device since 2015, mobile dropping from a more than 100 percent rate to negative click growth by the end of 2016. Computers and tablets have also seen negative click growth since 2015.
Finally, how are costs changing for e-commerce? CPCs have decreased for both text and Shopping ads, and seen negative growth on both desktops and tablets. Tablets have seen particularly negative CPC growth (-19 percent) since Google released tablet-specific bidding.
Mobile CPCs increased to 5 percent by the end of 2016 due to more aggressive bidding on Shopping campaigns to secure increasing traffic in the arena.
E-commerce merchants likely won’t be surprised that Google, and especially mobile, are ideal places to connect with consumers. Make 2017 a great year for your e-commerce with paid search!