Google Shopping Product Type – The Rundown

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Organization and structure is an important component for Google Shopping success. You can improve performance on your Google Shopping campaigns when you know what types of products are performing the best.

To get a better understanding of Google Shopping Product Type, we organized this article based on the following:

  • What is Google Product Tye?
  • Where to Find Product Type
  • Difference Between Product Category and Product Type
  • How Product Type Organization Helps
  • Great Product Type Requires Great Product Knowledge
  • Adding Product to your Google Shopping Feed

Related Article: How to Leverage Variants for Google Shopping

What is Google Product Type?  

According to Google, Product Type allows for eCommerce store owners to include their own product categorization information. Unlike Google Product Category, you are not limited to pre-defined values.

The product type helps people who are conducting a Google search better understand what you’re selling. When Google better understands what you’re selling, they’ll serve more relevant ads, which should result in better performance.

The product type also helps you organize your Shopping campaigns, which is a perfect segway into the next section.

Where to Find Product Type 

You have the ability to subdivide your products within Google Shopping.

Rather than serving all your products in one campaign, you can further segment products based on what makes the most organizational sense for your eCommerce business. Follow the steps below so you can locate product type:

  1. Within your Google Ads account, find your Shopping Campaign.
  2. Go to “Product Groups” & hover over this section with your mouse. 
  3. Click into the Pencil Icon on “All Products,” which will allow you to edit subdivisions. 

     4. You will then be able to click into product type

Difference Between Product Category and Product Type

It’s important to know the different between Google’s Product Category vs. Product Type.

Product category comes from Google’s Product Taxonomy, which has limitations. The issue with product category is there are many instances when the category you want to associate with your product with isn’t available, so you have to choose the closest option.

For example, for our in-house eCommerce brand, DermWarehouse, a product we sell is Apothederm Hydrating Eye Cream. The taxonomy we had to choose for this eye cream product was the following:

  • Health & Beauty > Personal Care > Cosmetics > Skin Care

Unfortunately, there was no Google Product Taxonomy for Eye Cream, hence why we couldn’t go beyond > Skin Care.

For the product type, there are no limitations. This is why we made the product type “Eye Cream.”

How Product Type Organization Helps 

A client we recently helped with eCommerce marketing and their Google Shopping structure was a pet store. The category we’ll focus on for this example is dog treats. Based on Google’s Taxonomy, the following category was selected:

  • Animals & Pet Supplies > Pet Supplies > Dog Supplies > Dog Treats

This client sells hundreds of types of dog treats. We knew to find winners and losers within dog treats, we had to further segment by product type, which would allow us to bid up and bid down based on performance.

Below, you can see product how product type allowed for us to take a broad category like dog treats and further segment.  You can see how we’re able to see the number of products for each product type along with the number of clicks.

Below is how the structure looks within Google Ads, which reminds me of how ad groups are structured within a PPC campaign.

Since the campaign we’re using in the example is set-up with automatic bidding, you can’t edit the bids per product group. If the campaigns were set-up with manual bidding, you could adjust the bids based on which product type is performing the best and worst.

Even with automatic bidding, if biscuits and crunchy treats received 100 clicks without a conversion, you could pause the product group, which would allocate the budget more wisely to top performing product groups or product groups that we’re seeing the light of day because biscuits and crunchy treats were hogging the budget.

Great Product Types Require Great Product Knowledge

Continuing with our dog treat example. You can see in the screenshot below on the left hand side (underlined in red) how product type is leveraged on the website to help customers further filter into the exact type of dog treat they are seeking.

It’s important to realize that you can leverage the product type for more than just Google Shopping. If you properly utilize filters and the search navigation on your site, it can help your current or prospective customers more easily find the products they are looking for based on type.

Note: Coming up with the product type for the pet store client took several internal experts on their team providing us with this list. Be sure to leverage product experts to help populate the most accurate product type list.

Add Google Product Type Into Your Shopping Feed

Product type can be added to product information within each product page on your site.

Below is an example of the DermWarehouse product page for the eye cream product we previously referenced. You can see below how we simply entered the product type information on the designated field. This information would then get pulled into your Google Shopping feed if you enable product type.

If you need assistance creating a Google Shopping Feed, here is a great resource from Google.

Quick Tip

For DermWarehouse, we have over 1,500 products. Rather than going into each product page individually to add the product type (which would take a long, long time), we created a Google Doc. with the product type information (along with other important Google Shopping elements). Our development team did a mass upload from the Google Doc. to import all of necessary fields within the product page for Google Shopping.

If you are looking to expedite the product type upload process via a mass upload, contact The Media Captain.

In Closing

Nordstrom has a teen section called Brass Plum, geared towards females. They sell pants, shirts and tops, shorts and skirts (along with many other items). There are Google Product Taxonomy for many of these retail items:

  • Apparel & Accessories > Clothing > Pants
  • Apparel & Accessories > Clothing > Shirts & Tops
  • Apparel & Accessories > Clothing > Shorts
  • Apparel & Accessories > Clothing > Skirts

There’s no information within the Google Product Taxonomy for Teens. There’s also nothing for tank-tops, if they wanted to track the performance of just their tanks. This is an example of why product type is so important as the category lacks the needed depth to take performance to the next level.

Anyone who is managing a Google Shopping campaign with large inventory will need to report back as to what types of products are performing the best, which is exactly what Google Product Type is best for.

Jason Parks

Jason Parks started The Media Captain in 2010. He’s grown TMC into one of the largest digital agency’s in Ohio over the past decade.The Media Captain has worked with hundreds of small, medium and enterprise clients on digital marketing and development projects.The Columbus Based Digital Marketing Agency has received numerous accolades. TMC was named a Top 1% Agency in the U.S. by UpCity in 2019 and 2020. They also won the “Best PPC Campaign,” which was a national award from DashThis. They were also the recipient of the Top 10 Social Media Marketing Agencies in Ohio.

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