What To Know About the Latest Google Shopping Feed Specification Update

By August 6, 2014Google Shopping

The Latest Google Shopping Feed Specification Update for 2014

Some Google updates and changes come and go without little known impact to you. However, the 2014 Google Shopping Feed Specification update will directly impact online retailers. In fact, some of the updates will require you to change your current product data prior to Sept. 30, 2014. So, in order to ensure you’re in the know, let’s break down the update.

Mobility is key

Mobile, of course, is a big part of the update. As last year’s holiday sales indicated, people are feeling more and more comfortable shopping with their phones and tablets. In an effort to encourage this – and make the shoppers’ lives easier – this latest update allows online retailers to provide a separate mobile landing page easily, via a “mobile link” attribute.

A bundle of joy

Another helpful update coming around the bend is the expansion of Google’s merchant-defined bundles. To make it easier for merchants to sell their bundles as such, the new feed specs features the “is bundle” attribute, which should be used whenever you submit a merchant-defined bundle.

Simplifying your availability

Google’s redefining and simplifying the idea of “availability” by merging “in stock” with “available for order.” As a result, “available for order” will be entirely removed. Any item that can be shipped in a relatively timely manner can use the “in stock” values. Merchants will now also have the ability to provide an “availability date” attribute to items to let shoppers know when pre-ordered products will be ready for delivery.

Other notable updates from the 2014 Google Shopping Feed Specification update

Other updates that will help you and shoppers with the overall shopping experience include:

  • Image quality recommendation – Online merchants will now receive more details and tips on how to submit high quality images. Be sure not to gloss this area over, as any way to optimize your images is an opportunity to win over more customers.
  • Character usage – To make it easy for you to add the right amount of characters for each attribute, Google’s feed specification will now clearly state how many characters can be used.
  • Apparel articles – Apparel articles received a refresh to provide more examples and guidance. The changes also include a new age group, as well as two new size attributes to allow for more detailed description and filtering.
  • A new policy – There is now a new landing page content policy, in place of the destination URL policy. This latest policy gives you the most up-to-date tips and information on how to submit landing page URLs.

Make your changes sooner rather than later

Online merchants can start submitting their new attributes immediately. Google will begin to enforce these updated attributes on Sept. 30, 2014. After then, any non-compliant product listings will either be disapproved or will disappear from Google Shopping. Merchants are warned to review the warnings on the Data Feed summary section of their Merchant Center account to see what items may be impacted by these changes and enforcements.

This includes ensuring that you no longer use “available for order” after Sept. 30, and that you abide by the character limits of each attribute.

By not abiding by these changes, you risk costly consequences, which is why it’s vital you start incorporating these updates today. OperationROI can help. We’ll ensure your product feed is up to date and abides by all of Google’s latest updates. Call us at 1-888-277-5429 or fill out our contact form to learn how we can help.

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