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20 October 2020 by Samantha Swanepoel

Google Merchant: What it is & Why you Should be Using it

Since the dawning of the Internet in 1991, there have been thousands of online developments which have made our lives more convenient. Time and time again we are reminded of how the wonders of technology have changed the course of our lives.

Need a new pair of shoes? What about that designer handbag? All you need to do is visit Takealot, Loot.co.za or an array of other e-commerce platforms and you can do your shopping conveniently from home, under a blanket, armed with your credit card information.

Not surprising, Amazon.com was one of the first e-commerce sites to start selling products online and since then thousands of businesses have followed suit. Can you imagine how different life would be without online shopping?

But, as technology would have it, there are constantly amazing technological developments to bring products and businesses closer to the consumer which brings us to our topic.

Google Merchant: one of the latest developments for e-commerce businesses.

Let’s find out how Google Shopping ties in with Google Merchant and why you should be using it for your e-commerce business.

Google Shopping

Most are familiar with Google AdWords and how it works. For those who may have missed this, Google AdWords refers to search and display ads which pop up in the Google SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages), in the case of search ads, and in Google partner sites in the form of images in the case of display ads.

The same way that these ads are triggered by keywords, or search terms, typed into the Google Search Bar, Google Shopping behaves in the same way. By paying for Google Shopping, businesses are able to allow their products to appear in a more prominent ad position increasing their overall product visibility.

If you type “External Hard drives near me” into the Search Bar then Google will spit out a bunch of external hard drives as a sponsored ad at the top of your SERPs. These results will show the price of the product as well as the retailer from which it can be purchased.

These results, and more, are also visible in the “Shopping” tab below the Search Bar where consumers are able to view and compare various products.

If you click on one of these ads it will direct you to the retailer’s e-commerce site where you can continue your shopping.

To use Google Shopping, retailers will need to use both Google AdWords and Google Merchant Center.

Google Adwords is where the participating retailers will run their shopping campaigns and is the platform in which they will be able to control and adjust budgets, bids, ad location and the ad scheduling.

Google Merchant Center

As seen by the name, Google Merchant Center is a place for the merchants aka the retailers. This is an online platform on which the retailer will update and store their product feed.

The product feed information includes the following product attributes among others:

  • Product description
  • Product image
  • Price
  • Product EAN/ISBN
  • Link to the retailer’s e-commerce site

Once you have set up your product feed it can be submitted to Google Merchant Center. The product feed needs to be updated monthly, however, it can be updated up to four times a day.

These changes can include adding new products, removing old products, indicating when products are out of stock or if a price has changed.

Keeping the product feed up to date is important as it helps keep consumers informed of current products and prices on offer providing a more competitive edge for the retailer.

To create Product Ads, you will need to link the Google Merchant Center account with your Google Ads account. Once this is done you are now officially a Google Shopping advertiser!

The Benefits of using Google Shopping

  1. Displays your products to a wider audience which can lead to more leads/sales
  2. Generates increased website traffic
  3. Provides analytics information to help improve product listings
  4. Help to build trust with potential buyers
  5. Compete with other e-commerce retailers on a digital platform

The Benefits of using Google Merchant Center

  1. Store all your product info in one helpful platform
  2. Easy to use and set up
  3. Enables the use of Google Shopping and the creation of Product Ads
  4. Submit comprehensive and accurate ads for your products
  5. Real-time editing for a greater competitive edge


Day by day it is becoming more apparent that digital marketing is the way to go. The Internet has become the digital brick and mortar of modern times and is the jungle where retailers, marketers and consumers roam.

Want to go digital? Keep your competitive edge and start marketing your business with Google Advertising. Contact the digital marketing team at Online Innovations for assistance with Google Ads marketing.

Call us on 041 365 4919, email [email protected], or visit our website at www.onlineinnovations.com to find out more.

Want to take your ecommerce business to the next level?

Keep your competitive edge and start marketing your business with Google Advertising. Contact the digital marketing team at Online Innovations for assistance with Google Ads marketing.

If you’re interested in our services, please give Bronwen a call or email her for more information.

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