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In our last post, we talked about the importance of being precise with category matching. Today, the subject is how to optimize product titles.
” What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”
– William Shakespeare, Romeo & Juliet
This may have been true for young star-crossed lovers, but in e-commerce, the importance of good product titles can’t be over-emphasized. If Romeo were shopping online to find roses for delivery to Juliet, for example, e-merchants who specialize in delivering roses would need to know their buyer intent well enough to choose a title that matches it. (“Fresh Rose Delivery, Verona” for example, vs “Rose Gardens, Verona”)
Given, each industry and each customer are different. The key is to understand the intent of the people looking for your products, and anticipating the words and phrases they are most likely to use in a query.
Product title is one of those feed attributes which, when enhanced, can have an immediate impact on ad performance.
Several years ago, Search Engine Land presented a case study that showed the importance of optimized titles. Products were divided into three groups; one control group with original titles, and two more groups with enriched titles that included category information, additional attributes and search terms.
The optimized product titles saw a CTR uplift of 18 percent. The CTR increase on the exact query match for the keywords added to the title was 88 percent!
Requirements for product titles on Google
While you’re optimizing your product titles, you also have to keep in mind the rules, limitations, and style standards required by Google.
Pay attention to character length limits.
Your title might get truncated, so you need to pay attention that your titles don’t exceed the character length allowed: 150 characters, but in most cases, only 70 characters will be displayed.
Therefore, always make sure you put the most compelling information at the beginning of the titles in case the tail end gets cut off.
All-caps text is common in spam and untrustworthy ads. Use capitalization only when it’s needed for proper grammar and punctuation. That said, it’s okay to use for abbreviations, phone numbers or countries.
Don’t include promotional text.
The Title field is not the place for entering information such as price, sale price, sale dates, shipping, delivery date, other time-related information, or your company’s name. That information is reserved for other attributes.
Distinguish between variants.
Be specific and add the distinguishing details of each variant. If your product comes in different colors or sizes, include these attributes in the title (and remember to use your variant images).
Requirements for product titles on Amazon
Amazon has several requirements about how to use titles for products other than media:
- No promotional keywords and phrases. For example, “free shipping”, “100% quality guaranteed”
- No non-readable characters, such as HTML characters
- Title length must not exceed 200 characters. (Titles are frequently truncated to 60 characters displayed.)
- Must have product identifying information, for example: “athletic shoe”, or “umbrella.”
How keywords work in product titles
Google uses the attributes of your titles as a proxy for keywords, so optimizing them and other feed data is crucial to improving the campaign’s performance. Because Shopping algorithms use a form of SEO, putting the most important words in the product title is crucial.
If you know your industry well and you have analyzed the path customers use to get to your product listing pages, you will be able to identify your ideal search terms.
If most of them search by brand name, then use your brand name first in the title. Conversely, if your brand is largely unknown or you are selling unbranded items, it is best to start with descriptive words.
Sometimes, though, they search by category or maybe by a product’s UPI (as in the case of electronic devices). The main task is to fully understand the intent of your customer and find applicable keywords to boost the title.
The order of keywords matters, because Google puts the most weight on keywords placed at the beginning of the title. While choosing keywords and their order, try some A/B testing using multiple title formulas and keywords.
What does an optimized product title look like?
Structure vs. Important Information
The structure of the title is just as important as the information included in it. Those are two separate components that don’t clash but instead complement one another
To figure out which attributes should be added, first, you need to understand how Google’s algorithm chooses products to be displayed to the searcher.
Mainly it considers the words at the beginning of the product title as the most significant to select ads relevant to the search query. So the order also matters.
Advertise Product Variations Efficiently
If you’re selling a product in multiple variations, each color, size, material, and pattern must be submitted as a unique item with the unique title.
This is when you have to decide if you want to advertise only a “parent” product or all of its variants. Pay attention to this detail, because it’s easy to overlook.
Summary: How to Optimize Product Titles
- Use the most important words first in your title. The first 20 characters of the product title are critical because that is where you capture attention. It doesn’t have to mention the brand; it can be “Hoodie Sweatshirt” or “Patio Lounger.”
- Utilize top queries from PLA and search at the front of your titles to maximize traffic, such as using “Record Player” instead of “Turntable” or vice versa.
- Use an item’s full title.
- Do include the brand name, size and color.
- If you’re selling parts, you may want to include technical manufacturer part numbers because that is how many customers begin their searches.
Tip: Ensure that your feed has correct GTINs, because it increases the chance of your products appearing in product cards. These can lead to higher conversions and engagement.
My mission at Shoppingfeed is explaining how to leverage e-commerce platforms and SaaS technology to e-merchants who just want to run their business and make more money.
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