Changing your Google Shopping Campaigns from losers to winners


With the country’s obsession with ‘The Last of Us’ I thought it might be a good time to talk about how Zombies affect digital marketing……………….. because we all already know how ‘clickers’ affect it, don’t we?

First off, you may be asking what the hell are Zombie SKUs?

Zombie SKUs refer to products or just their SKU’s that have not received any impressions in the last 28-day period. Therefore, they are perceived as being dead, however, it is ‘the bringing them back to life’ simile that truly gives them their namesake.

What causes them?

Several issues can cause a Zombie SKU, whatever the cause they all result in the same outcome; rightly or wrongly some products will be shown more in Shopping Ads due to the ever-secret algorithmic recipes of search engines.

In short, Zombie SKUs are products that do not get a chance to serve in Google shopping campaigns.

What can I do?

I hope you got it; Zombie SKUs are campaigns that are currently failing – not what you want to hear RIGHT? So what can you do about it?
Two choices…………………….

  1. Either stop promoting these products for the time being in favour of trying other produces. This should improve efficiencies in your account until such a time when you are ready to reintegrate these products.
  2. Generate Zombie SKUs – Boom, yes make my PPC Strategy pop!

How do I go about generating Zombie SKU’s?

You’re only 4 super simple steps away from generating Zombie SKUs and changing your Google Shopping Campaign from losers to winners:

Step 1.

  • Generate a list of SKUs that have had zero impressions in the last 28 days.
    You can find this out via a Google Ads script from a data automation solution such as Supermetrics and subsequently output to a Google Sheet

Step 2.

  • Next assign the identified SKUs with a custom label.
    We recommend using a scale of 0-4, depending on which ones are already being used and how much they are being used in your current campaigns.
    This should be done in a new column headed ‘Zombie Rating’

Step 3.

  • Setup the Google sheet as a supplemental feed in the Google Merchant Centre and make sure the columns are correct so that the SKUs can be matched via their ID. Set the data refresh to occur daily.

Step 4.

  • Create a new feed rule to assign custom label X (whatever you decided to call it in step 2) to the value from the supplemental feed you’ve just set up.

Once all set up, here’s how to run them

Create a new feed rule to assign the custom label to the value from the supplemental feed which you just set up. Congratulations, you will now have a custom label assigned to your “Zombie SKUs” which means you can now target these exclusively in your Shopping campaigns to give them a chance to perform.

Lastly but no means least here are the benefits of using Zombie SKUs:

Zombie SKUs give your underperforming products a chance to shine.
Without this data you will not know be able to give your products a fair opportunity to work their hardest and drive considerable revenue to your brand.

Getting Googles attention

By categorising these SKUs into a Zombie campaign, you are effectively flagging up your products to Google. Getting Google to pay greater attention to products that have not produced any results thus far. The clever old algorithm weaves its magic and hey presto, you start to see performance for previously dead products.

Get in Touch!

We would love to hear how you got on setting up your own Zombie SKU Campaigns, post below.
If you want guidance on SEO or PPC Strategy or want to talk through anything you are working on for some expert advice, we are always happy to help.

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