Portlanders know how to mix the urban (killer coffee, music and art) and the small-town (easy walking, biking and socializing). There’s no end to the city’s great restaurants, coffee shops and hot spots, and the locals are more than willing to explore. That’s why, when we started planning the Google Offers beta trial, we knew Portland was the ideal place to get it all kicked off.

Today, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt and VP of Commerce Stephanie Tilenius announced at the D9 Conference that we’re launching Google Offers beta in Portland, Ore. tomorrow.

Our first Google Offer will be from beloved local java shop Floyd’s Coffee. Husband-and-wife team Jack Inglis and Cris Chapman opened Floyd’s seven years ago, offering up espresso, coffee, breakfast burritos and more. They now have two convenient locations—one cozy, brick-lined shop in Old Town and another Stumptown watering-hole in Buckman.

With Google Offers, we’re working with great local businesses like Floyd’s Coffee, Le Bistro Montage, Powell’s Books and Ground Kontrol Classic Arcade to help them reach more Portlanders. We hope to bring Google Offers to other cities soon, with New York City and the San Francisco Bay area as our next stops.

You can learn more about Google Offers and sign up at If you’re a business interested in participating in Google Offers, you can let us know too. Finally, if you’re at the Portland Rose Festival this Saturday, visit our Google booth at CityFair to say hello to our team and learn more about Google Offers.

Posted by Kyle Harrison, Product Manager, Google Offers

As we shared last month, Google’s Online to Store research shows that online marketing campaigns are effective in significantly increasing in-store sales. In other words, digital ads influence shopping decisions made in physical store aisles as well as those made in front of computer screens.

This week, we’ll take a closer look at the individual Online to Store study results of technology company Hewlett-Packard (HP). HP collaborated with Google and Applied Predictive Technologies (APT) to quantify the impact of online search ads on in-store purchases. They conducted a four-week long study in which users were exposed to HP search ads co-branded with a leading national electronics retailer. Would a significant number of users who clicked on a co-branded HP/retailer ad after searching on keywords such as “hp laptop” and “laptop computer” then purchase a product at the physical retail location, generating incremental in-store sales?

The answer, the study showed, was yes. The online campaign resulted in a 530% overall return on advertising spend (ROAS) for computers, with a 1,090% ROAS in the top 25% of markets based on specific store attributes for the computing category. Furthermore, HP found that ads for higher-end models and ads in more prominent positions on the searchresults page were correlated with an even higher increase in physical store sales. This suggests that some users who conduct research online may be more comfortable purchasing higher-end items at a local store, and also highlights the importance of ad rank in influencing users.

To learn more about this and other studies, visit Google’s new Think Insights site.

Posted by Emily Parker, The Google Tech Team

At an event in New York City today, we announced Google Wallet, an app that will turn shoppers’ phones into their wallets. Google Wallet will enable consumers to store their credit cards, coupons, loyalty and gift cards securely on their phone, so they can pay, redeem offers, and earn loyalty points - all with a single tap of their phone. It is in a field test now and will be available to all consumers this summer.

A key benefit to retailers will be the integration of coupons, or offers, into Google Wallet. We’ve been testing a variety of offers - from discounts directly within search ads to check-in offers to offers in Google Places. Over time, consumers will be able to save each of these offers directly to their Google Wallet. That means consumers will get the benefit of carrying their offers with them at all times, bringing retailers targeted foot traffic.

The integration of offers into Google Wallet will enable merchants to close the loop by directly connecting their online and mobile advertising with offline purchases. In addition, Google Wallet provides merchants with a way to engage with customers in-store, enhancing the customer experience. Many leading merchants are integrating Google Wallet into their stores.

From the outset, Google Wallet will be compatible with more than a hundred thousand merchants nationwide that are part of the MasterCard PayPass network - a merchant point of sale service that enables consumers to tap to pay.

We’re also working with leading retailers and point of sale systems companies to integrate Google Wallet into their physical store experience. Participating retailers include: American Eagle Outfitters, Bloomingdale’s, Champs Sports, The Container Store, Duane Reade, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Foot Locker, Guess, Jamba Juice, Macy’s, Noah's Bagels, Peet’s Coffee & Tea, RadioShack, Subway, Toys“R”Us and Walgreens.

Google Wallet is currently being field tested, and we plan to release it soon. In the meantime, we encourage you to learn more at our website:

Posted by: Spencer Spinnell, Director of Commerce Partnerships

With the rainy spring this year, vacations are top of mind for most Americans right now, and this trend is expected to last through July. According to a recent USA Today study, more than six in ten Americans say it’s important that they get away from home this year.

Unfortunately, getting away from home might be more of a financial challenge than expected due to the high gas prices. As such, stay-cations are on the rise this year, with consumers placing an increased importance on staying local and decreasing spend. Among Americans who report making major changes to their lives to deal with gas prices, 32% said they will drive less or stay home more.

With more people remaining within their local communities, Retailers should focus on promoting seasonal products that are easy to transport or even use in your own backyard. Here’s a few helpful tips to keep in mind:

Use Display Ads to Drive Interest:
Show ads alongside relevant articles and content related to the rising gas trends or fun summer activities using eye-catching banner ads. Text ads are easier to create, but banner ads may have a longer-lasting impact. E-Marketer reported that use of standard banner ads grew 23.1% from 2009 to 2010. With the growth of display and increasing emphasis on local, relevant deals, display ads are a great way to supplement your text ads. Don’t forget to include all ad sizes!

Expand Your Reach Locally:
Explore ideas for new keywords with Google’s Contextual Targeting Tool to ensure you have as many potential keyword themes as possible. Type in a local attraction and let the system do the heavy lifting. Also remember to make as many tightly-themed display ad groups as possible.

Remember the Essentials:
Gas grills and tents are on the rise, so gear up and get ready for the camping trip and bonfire! Promoting outdoor accessories will be helpful for the last-minute camper looking to get away for a nice weekend.

It’s not too late to capture these growing trends and plan for local summer promotions. Remember to stay relevant and communicate the value of your offer through display advertising!

Posted by Nicole Poppe, The Google Retail Team

Editors note: is America’s largest and fastest growing, accredited online pharmacy, which boasts an inventory of over 4,000 unique prescription drugs. The company was recently featured in Consumer Reports as one of the top drugstores in the United States. We’ve invited today’s guest blogger, Marston Alfred, Director of E-commerce at, to share why HealthWarehouse implemented Google Commerce Search. To read more, download the case study.

HealthWarehouse isn’t your typical pharmacy. Instead of physical stores, we rely on a website where we sell and ship medications to tens of thousands of customers throughout the country. And while an online-only presence allows us to save on typical infrastructure and personnel costs, it also presents some unique challenges.

From the beginning, implementing quality e-commerce search was critical to our business. Medication names are complicated and difficult for pharmacists to spell – let alone the consumer (amlodipine benazepril as an example) – so it’s necessary that we have a search and navigation experience that can interpret customer intent as well as a pharmacist could. But as we quickly found, e-commerce search can be very complicated.

To tackle the search problem we evaluated several third-party e-commerce solutions, but these providers would have required us to manually register thousands of common medication misspellings and synonyms – which wasn’t feasible or scalable, and would have required constant fine-tuning. Providing relevant results for our audience was also an issue. In search, our customers demand the expertise and intuition of a pharmacist, and you can imagine how this would be difficult to provide without reams of historical data related to medicine and our business. Enter Google.

Google Commerce Search utilizes the same underlying spellchecker and thesaurus of (tried and tested on over one billion queries across every imaginable category each day) to automate the display of results on retail websites. Google Commerce Search uses these signals to provide a search and discovery solution that performs phenomenally out-of-the-box, and only gets better the more people use it.

We implemented Google Commerce Search, and results for complicated prescription names were instantly more accurate, providing a 40% decrease in call-center volume (literally overnight). Clearly, visitors are now finding and discovering products much better on their own. In line with this unexpected drop in customer support calls, actual searches increased 85%, unique visitors and page views doubled, and conversions rose 19%. Search became a much more valuable component of our website.

Switching to Google Commerce Search not only increased our revenues, but also allowed us to focus and scale our core business (which, believe it or not is affordable medication and not IT). More importantly, Google’s search and navigation solution has significantly improved product discovery, putting affordable medication into the hands of more people.

If you’re a retailer, you've probably seen the shopping results on and Google Product Search. These results are generally based on product feeds that retailers submit, for free, to the Google Merchant Center.

There are four key benefits for retailers who upload product feeds:

Free, Qualified Traffic through Google Product Search, a shopping search engine that helps consumers discover product information, compare prices and find a retailer from whom they can make a purchase. This is free traffic to your retail website, which you can only benefit from by submitting a product feed.

Richer AdWords Formats such as product extensions use the product feed to automatically display your products within AdWords ads where relevant.

Improve On-Site Conversion with Google Commerce Search. Commerce Search leverages your product feed and innovations of to deliver a powerful search and discovery experience on your e-commerce site. Among other things, Google Commerce Search provides an interactive shopping experience - which includes features like automated promotions and instant results - found only on the top retail websites, as well as a powerful merchandising suite that helps you integrate business goals and adapt to market dynamics.

Reach Mobile Shoppers through Google Shopper, our shopping application for Android and iPhone, Shopping for Mobile, our shopping website, and Google Commerce Search on your mobile website. On-the-go shoppers will be able to discover goods you submit in your product feed.

To take advantage of the unique features associated with the merchant feed, first submit your product data feed at the Google Merchant Center and then explore the hyperlinks listed above.

Think it’s too late to launch an online campaign to drive sales this Memorial Day weekend? Think again! With Memorial Day less than two weeks away, now is the time to really hunker down and make sure your campaigns are ready for the first long weekend of the summer! Here are a few points to consider:

While this could easily be the topic of another post entirely, it’s worth pointing out that on big holiday weekends, consumers are looking to take advantage of the extra time off and do some shopping. If your business is offering Memorial Day weekend promotions, it’s never too late to get the word out about those deals! Don’t have time to create new ad copy? Consider leveraging sitelinks within your campaigns to highlight Memorial Day sales, printable coupons or even special online-to-store pickup and return policies! Using Google Insights for Search, we can see that the search volume for [printable coupons] experienced a bump around Memorial Day in 2010, and is expected to do the same again this year:

Big Ticket Items
Big ticket items, such as furniture, mattresses, and appliances aren’t usually purchased on a whim. Due to the large financial commitment, these purchases are often the result of a joint decision making process. With routinely busy schedules, what better time to plan a family shopping trip than a long weekend? Google search trends back this up. Take the term [mattress sales], for instance. In 2010 this term experienced the greatest search volume in the days leading up to Memorial Day weekend, Labor Day weekend and Black Friday, as illustrated here:

The same holds true for [furniture sales]:

If you’re a retailer in this space, make sure to capitalize on this opportunity! Whether or not you have brick and mortar locations, now is the time to get your deals in front of potential customers!

After you’ve spruced up your campaigns for the long weekend, sit back, relax and have a cold glass of lemonade in honor of our soldiers past and present. Happy Memorial Day!

Posted by Erin Maddens, The Google Retail Team

For the past 18 months, retailers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Japan, and France have benefited from a better search and browse experience on their e-commerce sites, powered by Google. Retailers such as,, and implemented Google Commerce Search on their respective websites. As a result, Woodcraft increased search revenues 34%, BabyAge increased site searches 64% and HealthWarehouse saw online conversions increase 19%—and all have reported an increase in customer satisfaction. Similarly, many prominent global retailers like L’Occitane en Provence and Forever 21 have pre-announced their implementation of Google Commerce Search or recently gone live with GCS on their mobile websites.

We’re delighted to be expanding our international presence by announcing that Google Commerce Search is now available in Spain, Italy, and the Netherlands. Key benefits include:
  • A rich shopping experience: Provide the same interactive shopping experience found on only the top retail websites. Google Commerce Search includes features such as instant results that display with every keystroke, automated product recommendations, spell-checker, synonyms and many enhancements to come.
  • The most effective merchandising: Automate promotion of cross-sells and up-sells across your site and highlight related content without the need for an entire engineering team to manually tweak and optimize your shopping experience.
  • A powerful management suite: Our all-encompassing customization tools enable flexibility and control so that your business can adapt to changing requirements more quickly and at lower cost.
  • Mobile compatibility: Provide a fast, relevant and mobile-friendly shopping experience from any device.
If you’re a global retailer already using Google Commerce Search, the full capabilities of our product are immediately available for your Italian, Spanish, and Dutch language websites. If you’re a retailer who would like to take advantage of capabilities like the ones mentioned above, visit

Posted by Erik De Muinck Keizer, Head of Enterprise


I am so incredibly impressed with the rapid evolution of advertising and marketing possibilities around us. Offline, online, social-- there are so many things to do, and so little time (and budget!).

One of the absolute delights of online marketing (regardless of type) is the amount of accountability you can bring to your marketing budgets. How many people looked at your ad in a magazine and took action? You can measure this for your digital display ads. How many potential customers how were actively looking for cars, saw your ad on TV, and then went to your destination? You can measure this for your search ads. How often do prospects listen to your radio ads completely and then take engage with you? You can measure this for your YouTube ads.

I could keep going. It is so exciting what we can measure, regardless of the online channels we use, or the measurement tools in which we have access.

And yet, it is heartbreaking how little we bring all this awesomeness to bear upon our digital efforts. So much of our marketing is simply replicating our offline advertising online. And what is particularly heartbreaking to me, the author of two books on web analytics, is how we bring our low expectations of offline measurement to our online efforts.

So let's change this. Together.

On May 19th I am conducting a webinar that will share my point of view on three stages of digital marketing and measurement. [Sign up for the webinar here. Seats are limited!]

Here are three three phases of accountability and awesomeness...

The toddler phase: Here most of our measurement is based on simply response based metrics. This is far more accountable than other channels, but there is so much more we can do and with such little actual effort. We'll cover conversion tracking (simple one page tagged and you get so much!) and how a couple clicks get you the joy of call tracking data for your mobile search advertising campaigns.

The rebellious youth phase: CTR? Sure. CPC? No problem. CPA? Done! (If you don't know what these are we'll cover them, too!) But how about a holistic understanding of the impact on your business of all your online marketing? No, not just the one big conversion, but all the micro-conversions? This is such a delight. You develop the complete impact of your acquisition strategy and are better able to balance your marketing portfolio. Trust me, you want to do this. Every day.

The digital ninja phase: Macro and micro conversions? Check. Revenue? Yep. Economic value? When you hear OMG, know that it was created for this concept. The most glorious thing any Marketer can do, and the CMO and VP get, is a robust understanding of not just the activity (clicks, conversions et. al.), but also the value created for the business (including revenue). This is how the good get to the great (and we'll cover the approaches you can use to get there!)

So come join us on May 19th for an incredible hour and half where we’ll talk digital marketing, measurement, and strategies to kick things up a notch. And yes, bring awesomeness to everything we do.

See you there.

In case you were unable to attend the webinar on this topic last week, here is the recording of what was discussed. Look for more webinars in the coming months on topics such as campaign attribution, mobile metrics, and branding metrics, to name a few!

Posted by Avinash Kaushik

Memorial Day is officially known as the time for remembering all those who have died serving our country.

Unofficially though, it also marks the beginning of the summer. The beginning of sundresses and white shoes, sandals and bikinis, and of course, those DIY projects the winter months prevented us from tackling.

According to Tod Marks, senior project editor for Consumer Reports, stores in 2009 were overwhelmed with products, especially apparel, due, in large part, to the recession and the demand for lower prices. As a result, large chains have been cutting prices left and right in order to offer consumers larger-than-life discounts. Query trends from 2010 confirm this continued interest in sales as the term “Memorial Day Sales” rose over 56% from 2009 to 2010.

Another trend we’re seeing around Memorial Day is price cuts on home improvement items. Whether it’s building a new deck or replacing old appliances, home improvement stores are offering up deals that can help kick start your latest project. You can expect to see the biggest markdowns on washers and dryers and other big-ticket items as consumers begin to spend more freely on items to fix up their homes. In the fourth quarter of 2010 alone, sales on big-ticket items rose nearly 10% at Home Depot and the trend is expected to continue.

Retailers are also beginning to mark down hot-ticket items such as TVs and video games that can help to complete the home enhancement transformation. Technology equipment tends to be marked down around Memorial Day as retailers are pushing to get customers spending. By offering the lowest price around on hot tech items, retailers are more likely to draw the in-store crowd they’re looking for and give the consumer the price they’ve been waiting for.

Lastly, keep in mind that many consumers will be comparison shopping in order to find the best deal around. Consider creating an online e-circular that highlights your best discounts and promotions. It’ll help consumers find all of their summer essentials without driving around town or breaking the bank.

Happy Memorial Day from all of us on the Google Retail Team!

Posted by Angela Cortese, The Google Retail Team

[cross-posted from the Lat Long Blog]

When I’m looking for a restaurant in San Francisco, I always browse photos to see if the ambiance is right for the occasion. With our Business Photos pilot, we’ve been photographing businesses, with their permission, to highlight the qualities that make their locations stand out. In addition to the photos that business owners can upload directly through Google Places, these photos help potential customers get a better view of the decor, merchandise, food, and more on each business’ Place page.

Gruhn Guitars Inc. in Nashville, Tennessee, United States

We’ve also been taking 360-degree photography to help businesses owners showcase their locations further, and starting today you can experience that panoramic perspective for select businesses in the United States, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.

This experience, using Street View technology, includes 360-degree imagery of the business interior and storefront. With this immersive imagery, potential customers can easily imagine themselves at the business and decide if they want to visit in person.

Tenkai, Kyoto, Japan

We’re now starting to make these images available through the Place pages of select businesses we’ve photographed. When 360-degree imagery of a business is available, you’ll see an arrow appear over the thumbnail Street View image on that business’ Place page. Press the arrow to preview the storefront or interior, then click on the thumbnail to see the image in Street View.

Storefront thumbnail for Susan Avery Flowers and Event Styling in Australia

With this pilot, you'll begin to see additional photo experiences on the Place pages of a growing number of businesses. As additional imagery becomes available for more locations in the coming months, you’ll also be able to enter the interior perspective of businesses directly from the Street View images of nearby roads on Google Maps.

We’re continuing this program with businesses in select cities in the United States, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, UK, South Korea, and France. If you would like to highlight your business to Google Maps users, please visit the Business Photos site to learn more and apply.

Posted by Gadi Royz, Product Manager, Google Maps


It’s one of our company’s guiding principles that data beats opinion. And as such, we’ve put a lot of effort into asking some interesting questions -- How do new mothers use the Internet? When do people really start their holiday shopping? What trends typify today’s Hispanic web user? -- and answering them with concrete information.

We’re now pleased to share this knowledge at Think Insights with Google, the website where we’ll be publishing our learnings and insights about digital marketing trends. From papers to case studies to videos, Think Insights' content represents the on-going work we’re doing to better understand how web users are embracing new media platforms, and how marketers are adapting to this changing terrain. 

We’ll be updating this site frequently, so if you'd like to keep up with our latest news, sign up here for your monthly Think Insights fix.

Enjoy and happy data-diving!

Posted by The Think Insights Team

[cross-posted on the Google Mobile Ads Blog]

With more than 165 million tablets expected to ship over the next two years, tablets are becoming a popular device with engaged, tech-savvy consumers. So we’re pleased to announce that we’re developing new targeting options to help you better connect with this audience. To give you greater control over your AdWords ads, we’re changing the way you can target tablet devices.

In the next couple of weeks, the “Networks and Devices” section of your Settings tab within your AdWords account will include a new targeting option titled “Tablets with full browsers.” While you’ve been able to specifically target Apple iPad devices in the past, the new capability will enable you to easily target your ads to the entire tablet device category. In addition, you'll be able to select more precisely the types of devices and operating systems on which your AdWords ads will show. For example, to display your ads on the Apple iPad, you’ll be able to choose “Tablets with full browsers” as your device targeting setting and “iOS” as your operating system setting. Tablet targeting will be available initially for Apple devices only, but we'll expand ad serving to other specific devices in the near future.

Once this capability is available in your account, your ads will automatically start running on tablet devices and no further action will be necessary on your part. If your campaigns were specifically targeting Apple iPad devices, you may notice an increase in impressions and costs as we include more tablets in our ad serving options. If you don't want your ads to appear on tablet devices, you’ll be able to specify this preference in your device targeting settings by following these step-by-step instructions.

For now, only standard text and image ads can be shown on tablet devices. So please make sure your landing page renders properly on tablet devices, as our system will automatically limit your ads from running on tablet devices if we detect that users will be led to a landing page containing a significant amount of Flash or other content that will not render properly. To learn more, please visit this Help Center article.

We’re constantly working to provide our advertisers with new targeting capabilities for their AdWords campaigns. We hope that these targeting options will enable you to successfully connect with your customers across a variety of devices and platforms.

Posted by Surojit Chatterjee, Google Mobile Ads Product Manager

As a member of Generation X, I like to think we’re much more tech savvy than our parents' generation. Younger generations grew up with technology at their fingertips and now spend most of their day making connections with friends and colleagues via our laptops and smartphones. We Tweet, Facebook, IM and text all day long. But the often ignored truth is that our parents are right there with us.

In fact, the Baby Boomer generation is much more tech savvy than we acknowledge. According to Nielsen, Boomers make up 1/3 of all online, social media and Twitter users.

However, once the primary target of Retail marketers, Baby Boomers are being left behind for a much younger, trendier audience. But there are 80 million Boomers currently in the United States, and they are extremely affluent. eMarketer suggests that this digitally-savvy generation, who are between 47-65 years old, “spend more time and money online than any other demographic.”

Pat McDonough, an SVP at Nielsen states, “Boomers should be as desirable for marketers as Millennials and Gen-Xers for years to come; they are the largest single group of consumers, and a valuable target audience. As the U.S. continues to age, reaching this group will continue to be critical for advertisers.”

So, how can Retail Advertisers regain the interest of Baby Boomers online?
  • Don’t Age Up Messaging. Baby Boomers are an active generation: working full-time, caring for their parents, travelling, staying on the move. They don’t want to be associated with being old or decrepit. Create ad messaging that appeals to all ages.
  • Keep it Simple. Because Boomers joined the online world later in life, they may not be quite as tech savvy as younger generations. Ensure ad copy and landing pages are as clear and concise as possible. Create a quick and painless checkout experience where consumer privacy and security is clearly stated.
  • Connect via Mobile. Keep up with this fast-paced group by targeting them on their mobile devices. eMarketer estimates that more than 86% of Boomers have a mobile phone. By 2012, more than 25 million Baby Boomers will be accessing the Internet via their mobile device. This mobile ad messaging should stay simple, relevant and mirror offline advertising. Retailers should keep landing page easy to read. Another consideration is to ensure pricing in mobile ads are compelling and location specific. While many Baby Boomers are relatively affluent, a large percentage have had to delay their retirement due to the economy, and are interested in getting the best price available.

Posted by Susan Minniear, Google Retail Team

The days of handmade coupon books for Mother’s Day (think, “this coupon is good for 1 breakfast in bed”) are dwindling as consumers are using online retailer coupons to spoil mom this year.

FTD promoted a floral deal through LivingSocial, and is selling Kindles with a bonus gift card to the site. Online photo companies are offering discounts on cards and photo books, and other retailers across the web are following suit with deals of their own. Even vacation destinations are in on the action with special weekend getaways for mom.

Over the past several years, consumer interest in Mother’s Day coupons and deals has steadily increased every May.

And consumers have learned that discounts on great gifts await them when they search online -- 21.5% of online shoppers plan to purchase their Mother’s Day gifts online this year*

There’s still time to reach those last-minute Mother’s Day shoppers when they’re online hunting for the latest deals for mom, as not everyone has gifts wrapped and ready to go. Last year, for example, ecommerce apparel sales were up 14% the week before Mother’s Day vs. the same week in 2009. ** Help mom celebrate in style with your special Mother’s Day offers.

*BIGresearch®, Consumer Intentions & Actions® Survey, April 2011
**MasterCard SpendingPulse

Posted by Jennifer Glare, The Google Retail Team

The retail landscape is evolving as new technologies provide additional ways to discover and purchase products. Mobile devices, for example, are fundamentally changing how consumers shop by facilitating product discovery, the reading of reviews, and more – all on the fly. Online shopping is also expanding as a result of technologies like Google Product Search and the Shopper mobile app, two of many new channels which drive traffic to both desktop and mobile sites.

In a March 2011 research study conducted by ROI Research, 49% of mobile searchers made a mobile purchase in the past six months, with 82% of respondents using mobile search to find an online retailer. Understandably, more and more retailers are not only improving their desktop site, but also creating distinct mobile experiences.

Join us tomorrow for a special look at innovations in e-commerce like the ones mentioned above. We’ll share our observations and a few ways you can increase conversion by bringing the latest in online retailing to your site.

When: Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 11:00 AM PT/2:00PM ET
Who: Nitin Mangtani, Group Product Manager for Google Commerce
Nancy Miller, VP of Internet and Development for Woodcraft Supply
Register now

We hope you'll join us, and also check out some of the other retail events we’re hosting in Santa Monica and New York.

I can hear Pomp and Circumstance playing as I think of all the high school and college students marching across the stage to receive their diplomas this month. While these students throw their caps into the air and embark on their journey into the “real world”, retailers are hard at work making sure they are involved every step of the way.

Here are some tips on how retailers can engage the graduates and their families this year.

Be well dressed.
Finding the perfect outfit for the ceremony and post-graduation celebrations can be a chore. Make it easy for consumers to find white dresses and suits by correlating ad copy with specific landing pages. Graduation dress shoppers historically search online for graduation dresses through the end of May. Time advertising according to interest to be in the consideration set.

Don’t forget to suggest matching shoes and accessories for the big day to increase shopping basket size.

Bring gifts.
Graduation is a key gifting period. Relatives spoil graduates with gifts of all shapes and sizes. Be visible to consumers looking for graduation gift ideas and offer suggestions of appropriate gifts. Personalized items are popular for graduation, so if you sell these items, broadcast it across multiple media platforms.

Don’t miss the party.
Graduation day usually entails a well-deserved celebration with family and friends. Advertising on terms such as [graduation party ideas], [graduation decorations], [graduation favors] and [graduation party invitations] enhances the chances of engages converting party planning purchasers.

Pose for photos.
This is a day where students become celebrities, as family acts like the paparazzi, capturing a chronological account of the last moments of the teenage years. Retailers that process photos or offer digital photo memory products have the opportunity to increase sales by targeting graduates and their parents this month. Be sure to open bids and budget to account for additional traffic.

We wish all the graduates out there luck in their endeavors, and hope you have the time of your life at your graduation celebration!

Posted by Keri Overman, The Google Retail Team