We have prepared this playbook to help you achieve the most ideal Google Ads data analytics setup on your Shopify store. We will also touch base on some of the most common problems & their solutions.
Google Ads Assets
You need to know some of Google Ads' assets and how they work together in order to make the correct setup. You can skip to the next section if you already know what these are. You will find the best methods to set them up for your Shopify store down below.
What product feed does is to provide information about your products to the Google Merchant Center, and creating one is an obligatory first step before you can set up your Product Ads. Make sure to keep your product data up to date for your ads to be relevant.
Google Merchant Center:
For your shop and products to be available for shopping ads, Google Merchant Center is the main tool that will help you upload your shop and product data to Google.
Remarketing Pixels (through gtag.js or GTM) send your visitors' data dynamically to Google Ads, such as:
- Visitor X visited Product A's product page,
- Visitor Y added Product B to the cart,
- Visitor Z purchased Product C.
Google Ads conversion tracking sends the purchase (and possibly other micro-conversions) related information to Google Ads so that you & Google's machine learning can identify the ads that bring purchases and optimize the Ads setup accordingly. Get more information on: Google Ads Conversion tracking on Shopify.
Google Ads Enhanced Conversions:
The new conversion tracking method for Google Ads. You can learn more about it in this article.
Best Practices & Toolset
As a globally trusted analytics partner of Shopify merchants, we have completed over 500 data analytics setups within the last 10 months. Here is our recommended Shopify - Google Ads setup:
Official Google App (for Product Feed + Remarketing Events):
We strongly recommend using the official Google app for the Product Feed and Remarketing Events setup. Analyzify's setup is fully compatible with the official Google app setup. There are also alternative apps for Google Ads in the market if you don't want to use the official one.
Analyzify's Google Tag Manager Setup (for Conversion Tracking):
GTM renders the conversion tracking much better than the other methods. We strongly recommend using Analyzify's Conversion Tracking (through GTM) as a primary conversion source.
Manual Google Ads Enhanced Conversion Setup:
We do NOT recommend using enhanced conversions as the primary conversion because it is a new feature and it doesn't work as seamlessly. We recommend that you create a new secondary conversion for the Enhanced Conversion feature and set it up manually through this guide.
Google Analytics & Google Ads Integration (as a backup):
It is always great to have a backup - even multiple. We strongly recommend integrating your Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4 purchase tracking as a backup with your Google Ads conversion tracking. Don't forget to set these conversions as secondary conversions.
Shopify - Google Ads Setup Guide & Checklist
Make sure to follow Analyzify's Shopify & Google Ads setup guide and checklist. This interactive guide will help you set up all Google Ads assets properly and detect & fix any possible problems on your existing setup.
Common Mistakes & Errors
During the setups we have done, we have observed the following mistakes are most commonly done by Shopify merchants or their developers.
Missing or Duplicated Conversion Tracking:
You should make sure that you have proper conversion tracking in place and only have one primary conversion so that your conversions aren't counted twice.
Not Connecting Google Analytics with Google Ads:
You should connect both your Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics properties with Google Ads for the best results, and you should also make sure to import the purchase tracking as a secondary conversion. Check out this guide to learn how.
Product ID Mismatch:
You will receive an error if the product IDs on remarketing events don’t match with your product feed. Check out this guide to make sure you have everything on track.
Wrong Attribution Model:
Most Shopify merchants aren't aware of the attribution models - and they stay with the default “Last Click” option. Check out this guide to get more information and learn about how you can pick the best model for your store.
Conflict Between Native Integrations & GTM Tags:
You shouldn't use the GTM tags together with the native integrations for the same tags. As an example, if you are using the official Google App for remarketing events, Google Ads remarketing tags shouldn't be active on GTM.
You can also consider using one of the Shopify Google Ads Apps to have an accurate tracking.