Changes for Google Product Search Merchants

Monday, March 14, 2011 | 2:26 PM

To help Google Product Search shoppers accurately compare prices and learn more about products they want to buy, we’re making some changes to our data requirements and our feed specification.  Please note that these changes will only affect Google Product Search listings and will not apply to Google Commerce Search or AdWords ad formats.

For Feeds Targeting the United States, United Kingdom, France and Germany

Unique Product Identifiers [required for most categories]: With user reviews, prices, related items, and videos, "product pages" (example: Canon S95) help users make decisions about what to buy. To help us match product listings to these pages, we ask merchants to provide “unique product identifiers.” Starting May 3, we will require unique identifiers for all products except apparel and one-of-a-kind items. Products without unique product identifiers may not be listed in Google Product Search, though the feed may not be disapproved. To learn more about these identifiers, please visit our Help Center.

Shipping Information [required] When shoppers are trying to find the best deal, online or offline, they need to know the full cost of an item - including the cost of shipping.  To help them accurately compare prices, we will begin requiring shipping information for Google Product Search on June 6th.  After that date, we may disapprove feeds from accounts that do not include this information.  Please visit this Help Center article to learn more about how to specify shipping costs either at the account or item level.

For Feeds Targeting the United States

Tax Information [required]: To ensure that shoppers have a seamless experience when they click through from Google Product Search to your site, we’re making tax information required for all feeds targeting the United States. As we’re doing with shipping cost information, we will be making this change on June 6th; after that date, product listings that do not include tax information at the account level, or in the “tax” attribute, may be rejected. You can learn more about providing tax information in this Help Center article. (Please note that feeds targeted to countries other than the United States already require inclusion of VAT in the “price” attribute.)

New Sale Price Attributes [recommended] Shoppers everywhere love sales. To help make sure your sale price is included in Google Product Search, and for the right duration, we’re adding two attributes to the United States Product Search feed specification, “sale price” and “sale price effective date.”  The attributes are recommended for the items that you have put on sale, but are not required.  If you do include these new attributes, you should continue to provide the “price” attribute with the non-sale price from your website.  You can learn more about these new attributes in our Help Center.