Changes are coming to Google Merchant Center over the next 18 months as Google begins introducing Google Merchant Center Next – the next iteration of the Google Merchant Center. Read on to find out what we know so far and how we think this is going to impact those running e-commerce campaigns with Google Ads.
In a significant announcement at Google Marketing Live 2023, Google revealed the launch of a simplified and automated version of Merchant Center – called Google Merchant Center Next.
This exciting development brings significant benefits for both technical and non-technical individuals. Less tech-savvy users will find relief from the complexities of managing feeds, while data-driven retailers can leverage valuable insights to make informed decisions and enhance their campaigns. So let’s dive in and see which changes we can expect.
Insights in The New Performance Tab
In order for retailers to get easy access to their performance data, Google has brought all the insight reports under the performance tab within GMC Next. This enhanced user interface offers comprehensive insights and encompasses crucial data points, including the number of products, competitor visibility, pricing, demand, store visibility on search and maps, and non-product website results. This consolidated view enables merchants to manage their product inventory in one convenient destination
Automated Product Feeds
Instead of manually setting up product feeds and inputting various assets, Merchant Center Next automatically detects and pulls this information from merchants’ websites. This update is ideal for advertisers and website owners who are less technically inclined.
It is important to understand the distinctions between Merchant Center and Merchant Center Next. While the former required manual setup of product feeds and the inputting of various assets such as pricing, imagery, keywords, and descriptions, the latter will automatically extract this information from merchants’ websites. However, users will still have the final say in approving and editing individual ads as this feature can also be turned off.
Another useful feature that will be hosted on the new GMC Next is Product Studio. This tool can easily create unique product images using AI. According to Google, “While many product offers on Google have just one image, we see an increase in both impressions (+76%) and clicks (+32%) for product offers that include more than one image.”
For this reason, Google has created this new product for smaller businesses that have fewer images to simply create multiple product photographs using generative AI.
The key features of the new product include:
Background removal – simply remove a background image and show your product on a clean, plain background
Increase resolution – simply increase the clarity of an image without having to reshoot
Custom product scenes – simply add a new background to a product image for a new season/campaign / AB test, with a click of a few buttons
What does Google Merchant Center Next mean for PPC?
With the limited information we have to hand at the minute only time will tell. However, Google Merchant Center is a complex product that was often too advanced for most merchants or DTC brand owners to fully utilise. Therefore, it makes sense that Google want to simplify this product. For example, the “Promotions” area was over-complicated and it makes sense for promotions to both be easier to add. manage and update and also that they are tied to Google Ads Promotions.
Launch Timeline for Google Merchant Center Next
Google assures us that the features of Merchant Center will not disappear entirely. The transition to Merchant Center Next will be implemented gradually with plans to complete the rollout for all users by late 2023. Many users have already witnessed the rollout of Merchant Center Next, while smaller businesses can look forward to upgrades in the coming months.
Have you been upgraded to Google Merchant Center Next yet? If so, share your thoughts on Twitter, or LinkedIn and let us know
At GlowMetrics, we pride ourselves on delivering exceptional results for our clients and ensuring a seamless transition to Google’s latest tools, including Merchant Center Next. Contact us today to explore how you can leverage the introduction of Merchant Center Next to maximise your advertising efforts across the Google network.
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