It is Now Free to Sell Products on Google

Are you a merchant who regularly sells products on the Google Shopping tab? Has the fallout of COVID-19 left your sales diminished and your company struggling? The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 has caused challenges to the commerce industry. Physical stores have closed and digital commerce in all industries has become a lifeline for many retailers.

Today Google announced that before the end of April they will be making it free for merchants to sell on Google in the United States. Google plans on expanding this opportunity globally before the end of the year. This change will help merchants better connect with their consumers and provide them with better opportunities to buy from the merchant’s inventory.

What This Means for Advertisers

For advertisers, this update means paid campaigns can now be augmented with free listings. If you’re an existing user of Google’s Merchant Center and Shopping Ads, you will already be taking advantage of the free listings. For new users of Merchant Center, Google will continue to streamline the onboarding process and address challenges over the coming weeks and months.

Now is an important time for advertisers and retailers to make new customers and keep the current customers coming back to them. The fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has left many advertisers and digital marketers questioning how to maintain healthy sales and budgets. Read up on the recent webinar “COVID-19 Response Checklist for Digital Marketers,” where Intertwine’s Jake Renter and Wes MacLaggan of Marin Software answer questions related to the effect COVID-19 has had on the digital marketing industry.

 

What This Means for Retailers

For retailers, the change to Google’s Shopping tab means free exposure to millions of people who visit Google every day. To make your products more discoverable, you must opt your existing product feeds into the surfaces across Google program, which does not require Google Ads to use. The “surfaces across Google program” is an available program that allows shoppers to see product results from retail stores on various Google surfaces including Google Images, Google Lens, Google Search, and Google Shopping. Google is also kicking off a partnership with PayPal to allow merchants to link their accounts, which will speed up the onboarding process and help provide shoppers with the highest quality results.

 

What This Means for Shoppers

For shoppers, this update increases the number of products you can buy from more stores, all discoverable through the Google Shopping tab. For companies that in the past have depended on physical store locations as their main business channel, Google’s update will present them better opportunities to offer their products to shoppers for free.

 

Read Google’s original update article here.

Affiliate Summit West 2015

Intertwine Interactive had the pleasure of attending the annual conference again this year. Matt Davis (Director of Affiliate) and Angela Rasdal (Affiliate Manager) attended this year and learned a lot from the educational sessions and of course enjoyed the networking events.

There were approximately 6,000 attendees at Affiliate Summit West 2015.

 

Hit the Ground Running in 2014

As you know, 2013 held many updates in technology, social media, online optimization and more. If your business survived the many changes in the economy, you should take some time now to high-five your colleagues and congratulate them on their outstanding efforts. The next step is to jump into the new 2014 year with confidence and effective preparation:

Revise Your Business Plan
If you’ve been sitting on a business idea for the past year, here’s your chance to fully design and implement it into your business system. Evaluate the positives and negatives of your 2013 business efforts to establish a better business plan for 2014. Develop strict milestones to ensure the consistency of your revised business plan.

Reshape Your Marketing Efforts
How are you going to reach out to your new customers in the new year? Review the statistics of your customer traffic and sales, and then determine which efforts you will continue with or suspend. As technology and promotional methods evolve, you will want to make sure you keep your customers up-to-date on all the best devices and tools.

Assess Your Budget
Review every department’s 2013 budget details. If you had kept a comprehensive record of every company transaction, then this won’t take long. Then design a budget for 2014.

Prepare for Obstacles
Make a list of at least five obstacles that you could endure in the next year; then make a list of solutions for each obstacle. The earlier you prepare for potential obstacles, the more successful your recovery will be if the obstacles do occur.

Strengthen Your Relationships
Take advantage of the quiet start of the year by scheduling an out-of-office lunch or coffee meeting with your clients or partners. This will strengthen your relationship and give you a clearer look at goals for the new year.

Wrap Up the Loose Ends
If you ran out of time in 2013 to complete any small projects, use the December holiday break or beginning of 2014 to finish the projects. This will enable you to start fresh in 2014.

Clean Your Office
Whether or not your office is still showing signs of a wild holiday party, here’s your chance to clean up and unclutter the office. Separate and shred any unnecessary paperwork, and organize any piles of important documents you have laying around.

Celebrate a Successful 2013
Make some time to celebrate the year’s achievements and thank all employees for their excellent work. This will build confidence as you head into the new year.

Cashing In On Trends

Keeping an eye on trends is always a good business move. If you can jump in front of a wave, there is a lot of opportunity… but jumping in at any point in the wave can still turn out to be very powerful, even if you’re not at the very front of it.

A perfect example of a wave is within the firearms industry. Firearms have been a huge topic recently and with all the exposure comes a lot of opportunity. We have seen unprecedented growth in the industry the past few months and things are still flowing at a tremendous rate.

With this growth, the program’s affiliates are driving more sales than ever before, thus earning more commission than ever before. There is still a vast opportunity for affiliates to get in on the trend, though. Every time firearms are in the news, that presents another opportunity and another surge of customers.

Even trends that aren’t as eventful as firearms are something to keep an eye out for.

For example, we can see what’s happening in sports. We are in the middle of March Madness right now, but in a couple of weeks, the Masters in Augusta will be taking place. There will be a spike in searches for golf related products as well.

Take a look at the screenshot below to see an example. The blue line represents searches for “The Masters” and the red line indicates searches for “golf clubs.”

To jump on this trend, you can join Stonehouse Golf’s, Golf Affiliate Program. They offer you a unique option to offer to the golf market, with their great collection of professional golf photography.

Let’s get another example in here. What do tens of millions of people prep for every August? If you said “back to school” you know exactly where I am headed. Back to school means consumers spending a lot of money preparing for the new school year… and that means more money for you as an affiliate. Take a look at this next graph:

It shows the spike every August for “school supplies” and “backpacks.” This would be a great opportunity for you to promote something in the back to school realm. ReStockIt.com has a great offering in this area; take a look at their affiliate program here if you want to jump on this trend.

We’d love to help you jump on some trends with our affiliate program. Be sure to sign up for the programs above and get in touch if you need any help with your affiliate marketing campaigns!

E-commerce Sales Jump

U.S. e-commerce sales totaled $194.3 billion in 2011, up 16.1% from $167.3 billion in 2010, according to an estimate released today by the U.S. Commerce Department.

The estimate, not adjusted for seasonality, show that e-commerce is taking a bigger portion of overall retail sales in the United States. 4.6% of total retail spending took place online during 2011, up from 4.3% in 2010, according to the Commerce Department. When excluding sales in categories not commonly bought online—automobiles, fuel, grocery and foodservice sales—Internet Retailer calculates that e-commerce accounted for 8.6% of total retail sales during the year, up from 7.6% in 2010. Total retail sales, which includes e-commerce sales, increased 7.9% in 2011 and totaled $4.2 trillion, according to the Commerce Department.

Seasonally adjusted, 2011 e-commerce sales were $193.4 billion and represented 4.6% of total retail spending.

E-commerce’s strong fourth quarter helped drive this growth. Seasonally adjusted e-retail sales for the fourth quarter of 2011 totaled $51.4 billion, up 15.5% from $44.5 billion a year ago, the Commerce Department reports. In contrast, total retail sales increased 6.8% from the fourth quarter of 2010. E-commerce represented 4.8% of all retail spending during the fourth quarter of 2011, up from 4.4% a year ago.

Without the seasonal adjustment, e-retail sales in the fourth quarter of 2011 totaled $61.8 billion, up 16.1% from $53.2 billion a year ago. E-commerce represented 5.5% of total non-adjusted retail sales during the quarter. When excluding sales in categories not commonly bought online, Internet Retailer calculates that e-commerce accounted for 9.7% of non-adjusted total retail sales during the quarter, up from 8.5% in 2010.

The full-year and quarterly estimates from the Commerce Department are higher than those released earlier this month by comScore Inc. The web measurement firm reported total e-commerce sales increased 13% during 2011 to reach $161.5 billion, and 14% during the fourth quarter to reach $49.7 billion. ComScore draws on online purchase data from its panel of about 1 million U.S. online shoppers. Commerce Department estimates are based on a quarterly survey of more than 11,000 U.S. merchants.

Intertwine Announced as Leading Provider of Affiliate Marketing Services

Intertwine Interactive, an Omaha based Online Marketing Agency has been recognized for it’s Affiliate Marketing service by securing a spot on this month’s list of the top 10 Affiliate Marketing Agencies . The monthly rankings list published by TopSeos is a guide to the cream of the crop Online Marketing vendors in the industry.

“I’m pleased to hear we’ve been recognized as a top 10 provider of Affiliate Marketing services in the industry. We strive to provide best in class offerings in all of our Online Marketing solutions. We look forward to the continued success of our clients in 2012,” said Intertwine Interactive’s President, Jake Messerly.

 Intertwine Interactive is included in this list for its consistent performance and the superior services rendered to its clients.

 TopSeos seeks out the leading Agencies in the industry through a rigorous evaluation criteria that includes:

  • Competitive advantage
  • Superior services and pricing
  • Customer and technical support
  • Response to client problems
  • Innovations that set it apart from the competition
  • Overall efficiency
  • Overall performance

As part of the evaluation process, clients of Intertwine Interactive are asked to give feedback on general and project specific questions such as:

  • Rate your overall experience.
  • What type of needs analysis was conducted before work initiated?
  • How is keyword research performed to identify the keywords that will be targeted in the content?
  • How is keyword density used in relation to content creation?
  • What editing processes are put in place?

“The whole industry looks to us to identify reliable and accurate benchmarks and Intertwine Interactive has proven by its performance that they deserve to be on this coveted list”, shared Jeev Trika, partner at TopSeos.

About TopSeos
Since its introduction in 2002, TopSeos has been identified as an independent authority on vendors who supply Online Marketing products and services ranging from the best search engine optimization companies to the best pay per click management tools. In addition, TopSeos connects thousands of businesses each year that are looking for Online Marketing services with those who provide it.  With dedicated online presence in the US, UK, Canada and Australia, TopSeos continues to make a global impact in the Online Marketing arena.