Engineers at Adlucent built the platform on its software as a service (SaaS) BuyerPath product. Now it's being tested in more than 20 online trials with retailers. One company, Wasserstrom, averages a 125% monthly increase in revenue.
Google PLAs in Shopping are just the beginning. "We can already see Google attaching promotions to PLAs for individual products," said Michael Griffin, Adlucent founder and CEO.
The BuyerPath feature taps into analytics, heuristics and automation to manage the complexity of PLAs. The automation allows retailers to promote hundreds of thousands of individual products and pull the ad from Google Shopping if the product sells out. It also sends an alert and recommendation to the buyer of the product to procure more physical inventory before reposting the ad.
Griffin said the company plans to build out a suite of SaaS products based on BuyerPath technology. When asked whether the company will integrate the feature with Amazon PLAs, he said it's unlikely because data suggests that the conversion rates on the site continue to fall and the PLAs are serving up less often.
The Rimm-Kaufman Group reported in Q2 that its clients generated 33% of paid-search clicks at an average cost per click (CPCs) 10% lower than non-brand text ads in PLAs. The agency said PLAs drive substantial growth in retail, with some sites seeing between 50% and 60% of their Google spend invested in the format.
RKG accounted for 3% of total PLAs for most of 2012, according to analyst firm Jefferies. Digital agency Adlucent came in at No. 6 in the study, accounting for about 2% of total PLA ads. The top-3 PLA advertisers were digital marketing companies running ads for third-party retail clients, with Kenshoo taking the No. 1 spot.