4 Reasons for Adding Shopping Engines to Your E-commerce Business

Mar 12, 2015

If you sell goods directly from your website, you may already be familiar with comparison shopping search engines. What you might not be aware of is the critical role shopping engines play in helping e-commerce businesses grow, and how your company might benefit by adding your product line to a shopping engine web feed.

use shopping engines to increase sales

Why are Comparison Shopping Engines Important?
The popularity of comparison shopping engines has gained a lot of momentum over the past few years for the simple reason that consumers are understandably interested in getting the best deal they can find on the products they want and need. Even if your e-commerce site is ranking at the top of the search results and attracting plenty of traffic, online shoppers who visit your site are likely to continue shopping online until they find the best possible deal.

Comparison shopping search engines offer consumers an easy shopping experience by displaying product and pricing information from a number of different retailers on a search results page based on the consumer’s search query for a given product.

Shopping search engines have become an important tool for online retailers because:

  • They are responsible for up to 20 percent of a typical e-commerce retailer’s website traffic in many industries.
  • A staggering 94 percent of all online shoppers comparison shop before they buy.
  • An estimated 65 percent of all online shoppers spend 15 minutes or more comparing product features and prices on shopping search engines before making a purchase.
  • Consumers are twice as likely to purchase after researching a product on a comparison shopping engine.

How Comparison Shopping Engines Work
Most shopping search engines operate in pretty much the same way. After deciding which products you want to display in the shopping search engine, you create a spreadsheet with your product details, save it to a CSV file, and upload it to the search engine’s website feed. Typical product information you’ll want to specify includes product title, product description, price, and location of relevant product images. Once your file is received and processed, your products will be added to the search engine’s index.

Your listing will be displayed in response to a specific product search query. When an online shopper clicks on your product listing, they’ll be directed to your e-commerce website, and the shopping search engine will charge you for each click made on your listing.

How to Get Started
Because the requirements for formatting your data feed information varies across the different shopping search engines, you’ll need to decide which search engine you want to work with before you prepare your files. Some of the top comparison search engines include Google Shopping, Shopzilla, PriceGrabber, Amazon Product Ads, eBay Commerce Network, Become, Nextag, Bing Product Ads, Pronto, and Amazon.com.

While getting your products displayed on a shopping search engine is relatively painless, there are a few things you need to know in order to reap the most benefit and keep your business moving forward.

  1. Make sure that your product feeds are optimized on a recurring basis. Product names and descriptions should be as detailed as possible.
  2. High-quality photos of your products are absolutely essential.
  3. Create a budget you can live with and plan your per-click bid strategy accordingly.
  4. Track your sales results and periodically review your bidding strategy. Revise your bids as necessary to improve your conversion rate.
  5. Keep an eye on your competitors and be prepared to adjust your strategy to match changes in the marketplace.