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Google Free Listings — Organic Google Shopping

The Ecwid E-commerce Show hosts Jesse and Tim discuss the new program from Google that shows products in the Shopping tab for free. What does this mean for your business? Free exposure to millions of shoppers who use Google. Listen to our new podcast to find out how to activate free product listings for your Ecwid store.

Show Notes:

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Tim: Welcome back, Internet. A lot of people have been talking about this free, organic Google Shopping, and they are excited about it. And so today I thought what would be awesome is if I brought into one of our Ecwid Google experts to talk about what this thing is, why someone would want to do it, how it differs from other things that Google has on the market and maybe give you some quick how-tos on how to get started. So I would like to welcome my favorite colleague, Jesse Ness. Jesse, welcome.

Jesse: Tim, it is a pleasure. Always. You’re one of my favorite colleagues. Maybe not the top, close to the top, but I am an expert, so I really appreciate that intro. So, yeah, we’re going to talk about Google Shopping and the free Google Organic Shopping. It’s a little bit of a mouthful, and it’s a little odd because Google threw this out. They’ve had Google Shopping for like ten years. It used to be free. Then it was paid. Now it’s free again. There’s a lot to sort out here. That’s why we’re doing this. We’re still in quarantine. So we’re not together to make fun of each other in person. We’re gonna have to do it over a call. This is how we do it these days.

Tim: Tell me just again what free organic Google shopping is?

Jesse: All right, Tim, so free Google organic shopping is when you google stuff…

Tim: Wait, wait. I’m gonna stop you right there. Make it sound exciting. Make me excited about free organic Google shopping.

Jesse: Wow. To make you excited about it, I should probably not say free Google organic shopping because it does not roll off the tongue.

Tim: All right. I think that’s incredibly compelling.

Jesse: All right. Free traffic from Google. Tim, this is what we’re talking about. Google Shopping is a little tab inside of Google, where it’s just product photos. So a little area. It’s got all the images, prices, name of the product. All right. So it’s a very specific area where you mentioned earlier about Google Smart Shopping, what Google Shopping used to be as of like a couple of weeks ago, it was all the ads. So when you google things, and you see the images and the prices up top, that’s Google Shopping. But that’s powered by advertising, which is also great. But that’s not here. We’re talking about the free organic Google Shopping.

Tim: Jesse, can you walk us through an example, maybe show us what the Google Shopping feeds look like and how that differs from Google shopping tools that our viewers might already be aware of?

Jesse: Tim, I would love to. Why not? Let’s turn on the Google machine and see, let’s let her rip. I’m going to google “garden gnomes.” All right. Nice little fancy product there. The top of this is what you consider the old Google Shopping. Okay. So we’re talking about this little shopping tab there. You click into the Google Shopping tab. This is the area where this is now free. This used to all be paid. You can only get there through paid ads. And as you can see from the top, these are all product photos, descriptions, prices and everything. You need to sell some garden gnomes. These are pretty. Yeah. We didn’t realize they were… I don’t know what I was getting into here. This is good.

Tim: Yeah. Disclaimer, don’t google “garden gnomes” on the shopping tab. Yeah. There are some weird ones out there.

Jesse: All right. Why did we go to garden gnomes? Inappropriate gnomes aside, this whole Google Shopping area is free. If you’re in the garden gnome business or any other e-commerce business, you want to get your products here because it’s free. Using garden gnomes, assuming that there are not too many Ecwid stores out there that we’re stepping on your feet here, which you can see here. There’s a lot of product photos; there are descriptions; there are prices. All this stuff gets pulled through your product catalog. So that’s why if you listen to a podcast or videos before we talk about smartly labeling your products and putting descriptions in here, this is why. Because, at some day in the future, it was going to end up in some product feed. In this case, we’re in the Google Shopping feed, the free Google organic shopping even.

Tim: All right, Jesse. So let’s get to the real stuff. Why would someone want to use this new free, organic Google shopping?

Jesse: Well, Tim, I think the keyword there is free. So it is going to be free traffic from Google. And if you already have an e-commerce store, why not get some free traffic from Google? So we’re going to help you along the way. This isn’t probably the biggest traffic source at the moment. The little shopping tab isn’t like the main destination for people. But we know Google’s going to or we assume Google is going to start to feature this a little bit more. And beyond the free organic Google Shopping, getting your Google Merchant Center, also product feeds, and general unlocks a ton of other features. So it does unlock the ability to do the traditional Google Shopping, or the paid ads or Google Smart Shopping is kind of the current iteration of it. That allows this product feeds to show ads kind of all around the Internet, YouTube, Gmail. And then the top of the SERPs, which is kind of the main place for Google Shopping. So there’s a couple of reasons. And then, by the way, once you’ve figured out how to do a product feed for Google, you can also do a product feed, it’s basically the same process for Facebook, for Pinterest, for Snapchat, for all the other platforms out there. So it is worth investing the time to get this right because you can use it in a ton of other places as well.

Tim: Is this something that you expect will become more prevalent, more widely used in the future?

Jesse: Yeah, I think so. Let’s just talk with the advertising side first, because that’s what we know more of. This is kind of a new announcement from Google. But for e-commerce stores or for e-commerce advertising on Google, about half of the clicks, half of the dollars flow through Google Shopping Ads. So if you weren’t doing Google at Google Shopping Ads before, you probably should have. But now this is kind of an entry point, and it’s going to be free. No surprise. Google does want people to advertise. So this is a free way to get everybody started on the train to advertising. I don’t know. Spoiler alert, Google’s a public company. They do want people to advertise eventually. But this is free now. So why not get in on the free traffic now?

Tim: You just can’t argue with that logic. It’s just so sound.

Jesse: It is. I made it up. No notes here. We’re doing this live.

Tim: The furthest thing from live. All right, Jesse. We’ve talked about what it is. We’ve talked about why someone would do it. Now let’s talk about how you do it.

Jesse: All right, Tim. How do you do it? If you’re watching this video, if you’re listening to this podcast, there’s a very good chance you are an Ecwid merchant otherwise. I appreciate your dedication to listening this far, kudos to you. So, Tim, we’re going to walk through your store to show people how to set up the product feed from inside the store. You have a Control Panel. You can log into your Control Panel on the left-hand side. You’re going to see the All Sales Channel tab. You click into that. You go to the very appropriately named Google Shopping. So far, this is pretty easy, Tim. You’re going to scroll to the bottom of this page. You see this handy Generate Google Shopping feed. That’s where you generate the feed. So far, this is pretty simple. All it does is takes all the information from your products. The name, the price, the descriptions, and it creates this feed. But now is where you’re going to get into the Google side. You have to set up a Google Merchant Center Account. Setting up an account by itself, it’s not that hard. You just log in, you go to Google Merchant Center and create a login and password. That is where then you’re going to get to a little bit more the difficult part. It’s going to be a few challenges. You’re going to get some errors. Don’t freak out. It could be tax, could be the weight of your product or the SKU, or there are a million different things that can go wrong. Just know that when something goes wrong, we warned you. It’s going to happen. You fix it. You resubmit it, and you go through the process. This help page here is going to be helpful for you. Just follow the steps. You will get through this. We’re in this together, too.

Tim: If that sounds like something that’s a little too difficult for you, a little over your head, it’s okay, don’t stress out. If you can wait a little bit longer, if you feel you need to do it right now, I would encourage you to just hold tight, there’s an automated tool that’s coming. It will make this whole process a thousand times easier. But for those of you who do want to get started, set up that Google Shopping feed, that’s awesome, we just wanted to give you a quick video, to give you the tools to get started. I know it’s not comprehensive, it doesn’t give you everything you want to know, but hopefully, it’s given you enough information, you can get the ball rolling. If you need help, we’re here for you.

Jesse: We’ve seen some of the other announcements, and I haven’t seen anyone that actually has an automated way to do that yet, because it was just announced. Everybody else who’s doing this, you are still gonna have to do the same steps to get approved on Google. Hang in there. If you can do this, you got this. Otherwise, just wait.

Tim: Jesse, do you know what else?

Jesse: Talk to me.

Tim: That’s it. That is everything. Guys, everything that you and I have today.

Jesse: Did the list, answered the questions.

Tim: We went through all the notes. Don’t forget to subscribe, follow us on social media, and as always, check out our blog for even more tips and tricks. Don’t forget to check out the Ecwid E-commerce Show as well, an awesome podcast, full of information on digital marketing and all kinds of things to grow your business.

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