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Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

SMG Badged Google Partner
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# 1
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Our shopping campaigns in the US are performing phenomenally. Canada is not performing well at all, though the campaigns are similarly structured. The feed requirements for Canada are different and so the shopping feed is a lot thinner in terms of data; thinking that is the issue and we need to add more categories etc. to grab more impression share. Google reps say consumer behavior is simply different but I'm not buying it. 

 

Any one else experience a similar issue and figure out a solution?

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Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by MosheTLV (Top Contributor)
February 2016

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

currently, the google-canada domain does not have a

separate shopping venue to display product-listing-ads.

 

the submitted data (feed) and link landing-pages
do need to conform to the particular policies and
rules for each target-country.

 

for example, shipping and currency policies.

that sometimes means the titles and descriptions
need to change based on the individual differences
among countries; beyond a one-to-one translation
with respect to obvious language differences.


similarly, the bidding-strategies and product-groups
may need to change per target-country -- especially
if accumulated data shows differences; for example,
bidding higher or lower on certain categories of items,

during different seasons, holidays, or sporting events,
etc., depending on the types of items being sold.

however, in this particular case, one specific difference
between the u.s. and c.a. is that canada does not have
a separate google (shopping) domain to list product-listing-ads --
which tends to result in far greater competition for far
fewer advertising-slots; greater competition for fewer
ad-slots typically requires higher quality or higher bids
or some combination of both.

regardless -- not having a separate shopping-domain
would naturally result in far fewer impressions overall.

 

see also

https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/160637

https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/2704214

https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/1344057

https://support.google.com/merchants#topic=3404779

 

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

SMG Badged Google Partner
Badged Google Partner
# 3
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Thanks for the detailed response. Great point about Canada not having Google Shopping as a separate domain and therefore has limited slots. However, we cannot justify spending more money to purchase more IS given the low conversion rates.

Our US feed has both Categories and Product Types provided for each Item. The Canada feed only has Product Type since Category is not a required field in Canada. Is this hurting us?

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

Rising Star
# 4
Rising Star
I recommend adding as many attributes as possible as it will help Google define your products much better and might provide you with a better position.
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Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor

first, you're welcome.

 

the short answer is, quite possibly.

 

not being required and being recommended or an important quality factor,
are rather different -- not having a google_product_category or having an
irrelevant value with respect to the physical product, can certainly be an
important (negative) quality factor.

 

one caution is that, simply adding as many attributes as possible,
without regard to quality and relevancy, can actually lower quality
and adversely impact overall performance.

 

a low conversion-rate suggests that the bid strategy, dayparting, geo-targeting,
negative-words, or quality (site, feed, promotions, ratings), are not optimal --
especially with respect to a specific target-country.

 

generally, impressions must be highly relevant and landing-pages
must be highly optimized to result in higher conversion-rates.

 

before a new target-country is added, the entire site, all landing-pages,
e-commerce checkout, and all attributes (both required and recommended),
should be analyzed with respect to google's target-country requirements
and any unique characteristics of the target-country.

 

for example, automated machine language translation is not allowed.

 

for example, not all in stock inventory items are required to be submitted;
consider removing low-performing products from certain county (feeds) --
or adjusting their bid-strategies and quality factors accordingly.

 

importantly perhaps, some types of products, business-models,
or websites, may simply not be a good fit for all target-countries
or with respect to product-listing-ads.

 

however, there are other ad-formats and campaign-types that

are available and may be a better fit for advertising certain types
of products or advertising with respect to certain target-countries.

 

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

SMG Badged Google Partner
Badged Google Partner
# 6
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Will improving the feed have an effect on improving ad rank for Shopping Ads? Assume the ecommerce landing pages are well optimized; how can we improve impression share lost to rank in the Shopping Campaigns?

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 7
Top Contributor

the short answer is potentially yes.

there are only two ways to improve impression
share lost to rank in a shopping-campaign --
improve the bidding strategy or improve quality.

quality with respect to shopping-campaigns is mainly
centered around the submitted data (feed), promotions
via the merchant-promotions-program, the site details
and landing-page, and ratings and review information.

since canada does not currently offer promotions and
there are far fewer slots than on google-shopping,
product-listing-ads within canada typically require
either much higher bids or much higher quality or
some combination of both.

always take careful measurements
before, during, and after any change.

otherwise, consider dropping certain items from the feed,
using negative-words, a more complex bidding strategy,
or other campaign-types.

 

be certain the budget can cover the assigned bids.

generally, canada is very competitive with respect to the
product-listing-ads auctions and much more competitive
than most other target-countries for fewer ad-slots.

 

of course, posting a specific landing-page and feed entry

for both the u.s. and c.a. here within the public forums,

may allow forum-members to offer specific suggestions.

 

otherwise, recontacting google directly and asking for a merchant-center
product-listing-ads support-specialist for canada, may sometimes help.

 

Re: Why is Canada not performing as well as US?

SMG Badged Google Partner
Badged Google Partner
# 8
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You've been very helpful; thanks again!