Comparison shopping engines, also known as price comparison websites, showcase similar products or offerings from multiple retailers on the same page so consumers can evaluate the options side by side. Shoppers on these sites – like PriceGrabber, Bizrate and Shopzilla – are actively looking for a good deal, so brands list their products and pricing alongside competitors’ items to give buyers a clear apples-to-apples perspective.
For advertisers, this means they can upload product data feeds and set their bids by product or product category. Because most comparison shopping engines operate on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis, the advertiser doesn’t pay unless a user clicks on their product listing.
Once a user clicks on your ad on a comparison shopping engine, they’re sent directly to your website to complete the purchase. However on most online shopping marketplaces, the purchase takes place on the marketplace’s website.
Because comparison shopping engines rely on the brand’s product feed, advertisers must have a well-organized inventory system and data feed already set up. Each site will have different feed specifications, so it’s crucial that you monitor your feed regularly and ensure it stays up-to-date with the engine’s requirements.
In addition, advertisers must have online shopping capabilities already set up on their website since the final purchase will take place there. This means you should optimize your site’s mobile layout, page load times and checkout processes to prevent cart abandonment.