“In the past, I would just suggest, ‘Hey, just upload the products you actually want to advertise, it’s easier to manage,’” Kirk Williams, owner of ZATO Marketing, said in when referencing to what he would’ve advised clients before Google opened up its Shopping results to free listings, during the Google Shopping session of Live with Search Engine Land. “Now, I would reverse that and say ‘upload and manage your entire catalog because you could get free clicks,’” Williams advised.
Kirk shared an anecdote about a client of his who he was managing ads for on a specific category of their products, even though their entire catalog was uploaded onto Google Merchant Center previously.
“What we realized then is, ‘Hey surfaces across Google is still showing free listings for their entire catalog,’ even though [the client], at this moment, only wanted us to invest money in a specific category,” Williams said. He added that this is a benefit to having your entire product catalog added into Merchant Center.
“The vast majority of our accounts seem to be in that 3–4% range,” he said regarding the ratio of clicks on free Google Shopping listings compared to paid listings. This figure seems to have stabilized from the higher ratios he was witnessing in mid-April when Google announced free product listings in Shopping.