Google Merchant Center Next: What is it and what’s new?

Google Merchant Center Next Merchant Center Next

Hello, ecommerce businesses! We all have various strategies and techniques that have helped us enhance and run our businesses successfully. But one prominent tool that has streamlined operations for nearly all companies worldwide is Google Merchant Center (GMC).

Followed by the platform’s wide usage and popularity, Google announced further developments for GMC at its 2023 Marketing Live event: Merchant Center Next. An updated version of Google Merchant Center, Merchant Center Next is a simplified marketplace for ecommerce business owners to improve their online presence effectively.

Let’s dive into the most recent updates and features that Google Merchant Center Next has in store!

Why does your business need Google Merchant Center?

Product catalog management is an integral part of ecommerce business operations. A product catalog is like the aisles of your physical store where your products are displayed for your customers to view, compare, and shop as they please. Hence, maintaining your product list uniformly online is important to guide your customers to shop efficiently without chaos. This is where Google Merchant Center steps in to help.

The platform allows you to add your products along with appropriate images, descriptions, and product details to reflect your credibility to customers. You can also update and remove products and product details as needed. By listing products, your business appears in the customer’s search when they look for items or services similar to yours, improving your visibility among others. The customers also get your business under their recommendations improving their chance to choose you.

Additionally, the platform also provides you with the tools and analytics necessary to study your customers’ shopping patterns and behavior. This way, you can easily understand your costumers’ needs and make changes to bring in more traffic. With Google Merchant Center Next, you can manage all of these repetitive but significant tasks under one roof.

What is the Google Merchant Center Next?

Google Merchant Center Next is an ecommerce integration platform developed by Google to simplify catalog management processes for online businesses. The platform streamlines the monotonous tasks of updating, editing, and maintaining your product catalog uniformly, without errors. Additionally, with Merchant Center Next, you can promote your business across all Google platforms - Search, Business, Shopping, YouTube, and more. This improves the visibility of your business and products worldwide, helping customers shop with you effortlessly.

Significant features of Google Merchant Center Next

Google’s upgrade to Google Merchant Center ‘Next’ is more than just a change in the platform’s name. This version comes with several updates to make google product feed, data syndication and promotion quick and simple for businesses. Let’s take a glance through these exciting updates.

  • User-friendly interface

Data shows around 67% of online shoppers buy from a website with a good user interface, and 74% of them return to the website. Hence one major advancement in Google Merchant Center Next is its refurbished user interface. The platform has been revamped entirely with a quick and easy-to-use interface and workflow. This provides effortless navigation through the platform and enables you to add, edit, and delete product data easily. The upgraded interface aims to make operations simpler for businesses and shopping better for customers.

The new simplified Merchant Center Next

  • Automatic item updates

Are you spending hours and hours of your time on standardizing your product list? The automatic item update feature in Google Merchant Center Next draws data from your landing pages and websites and adds data to your product catalog without your intervention. The changes you make to your landing page are immediately reflected in the platform and other marketplaces you syndicate to through Merchant Center Next.

Further, the tool also checks for mismatches and errors in product data across platforms and rectifies them. Imagine one of your products is listed under cotton fabrics on your website and the same product is listed under polyester on Google’s platforms – the description on the platform is changed to cotton automatically. This way, the information about your products and services is consistent across the web, improving customer trust.

  • Automatic image improvements

While updating your product images online, Google doesn’t always acknowledge them. This happens when the quality of the image is bad, with poor lighting or promotional elements like watermarks on it. The automatic image improvements feature in Merchant Center Next reworks your images to match the product guidelines of Google and updates them to your product catalog, saving you time and resources.

Let's say you've just received a new collection of intricately designed handmade earrings. Using generative AI embedded in Google Merchant Center Next, you can easily experiment with different seasonal backgrounds, instantly transforming the earrings into eye-catching pieces tailored to the current trends.

Moreover, suppose you have product images with distracting backgrounds. In that case, the background removal feature comes to your rescue, seamlessly providing a clean and professional look to your handmade accessories.

This feature stands out as a particularly valuable resource for smaller businesses with limited budgets, offering an alternative to expensive photoshoots or editing software.

Googles Product Studio coming to a Merchant Center near you

  • Multi-channel selling

Today, customers no longer shop solely from your website or one particular marketplace. They browse through different ecommerce platforms trying to find the best deals. Hence, it is important for your business to be available to customers at many different ecommerce websites all at once.

By registering your business with Google Merchant Center Next, you are not just marketing yourself there, but also in the other platforms under Google, like YouTube, Google Business, Google Shopping, etc. According to reports, around 80% of online shoppers watch a product-related video on YouTube before they make a purchase. Further, Merchant Center Next offers product syndication with other popular ecommerce marketplaces, like Shopify, WooCommerce, and PrestaShop, improving your online presence and sales simultaneously.

  • Performance insights

Google Merchant Center Next offers personalized insights on the performance of your business and products online. For example, it has introduced a metric named 'Click Potential' (as shown below) that utilizes historical data to assess the likelihood of users clicking on your product listing ads. By comparing the performance of your products with others in your Merchant Center Next account, 'Click Potential' provides insights that can be harnessed for optimizing products with lower click potential, enhancing the overall effectiveness of your advertising strategy.

It includes data on the pattern of your customer’s purchase and shopping cart abandonment. With these tools, you can better analyze your sales to determine which products are best-selling and areas of improvement. You can further enhance the user demands and traffic to your business through the price-setting recommendations provided by the tool. It helps you to understand the market better and operate accordingly.

Nevertheless, Google says we are yet to witness the best in 2024! Are you excited for more upgrades in the Google Merchant Center Next features this year?

To learn more about Google Merchant Center, check out our detailed guide here. Or connect with us for a quick chat.

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