Ask a Marketer: When Should I use Google Demand Gen Campaigns vs Shopping Campaigns?

We use our expertise to answer your question.

Here’s the catch: We actually recommend running both Google Demand Gen and Shopping campaigns concurrently, rather than one versus the other. Here’s why.

Google Demand Gen campaigns, recently introduced as a new campaign type, has replaced and improved upon what was previously known as Discovery Ads. Demand Gen campaigns utilize more visually appealing, multi-format ads which serve across YouTube, Discover, and Gmail and offer advertisers the structural flexibility to achieve different marketing objectives. Because of this placement elasticity, you can:

  • Link the campaign to a feed in Google Merchant Center
  • Serve Product Listing Ads on YouTube
  • Use separate or combined ad groupings with visual elements, like images and videos

Given that Google Demand Gen serves on large visual platforms like YouTube, it’s recommended (for eCommerce marketers) to be utilized in conjunction with a brand awareness objective. This campaign type can be a great tool to build the upper funnel of your marketing approach. You can use them to:

  • Build newly acquired user audience lists to apply to Shopping campaigns
  • Help understand what assets and products resonate most with your audience
  • Apply those insights to further optimize within your Shopping campaigns

While the ability to focus on conversions exists within this campaign type, the last-click attribution for sales and the platforms on which it serves will always lag behind Shopping Campaigns delivering from the Google Search Network.

That’s why we recommend using both Google Demand Gen and Shopping campaign types in concurrence. Shopping should focus on maximizing performance-based KPIs such as revenue, cost, ROAS, profit, and contribution margin.

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