The Google Shopping Actions program has been around since 2018 but in 2019 how does it work and what can you expect as an advertiser and seller?

Are you taking advantage of Amazon Prime for your business? Now there is a program with a similar idea but structured like a mix between a referral program and a marketplace. 

Meet Google Shopping Actions. 

What is Google Shopping Actions?

The Shopping Actions program provides a way for customers to add items to their Google Express shopping cart via:

  • Google Search
  • Google Shopping
  • Google Assistant

Google suggests the main benefits for retailers of the Google Shopping Actions Program are:

  • Acquiring new Customers
  • Increasing Sales & Loyalty
  • Elevating your Brand

What Countries do Shopping Actions Support?

The Google Shopping Actions program is currently only supported in the US and France. There is no clear timeline on when it will be supported in other countries.

What are the Criteria to Participate in the Program?

There are different criteria for the US and France. Read what retailers need to know to participate in Shopping Actions for both countries.

US

To participate in Shopping Actions US, you’ll need to meet the following participation criteria:

  • Availability in the US. You’ll need to have a US fulfilment and returns operations and a legally registered business in the US.
    Inventory free of restricted products and services. A selected number of product categories are not supported on Shopping Actions at this time.
  • Meet returns and customer support standards and policies.
  • Compliance with all other Shopping Actions policies.
  • Compliance with all other Shopping ads policies.

You’ll need to adhere to Shopping ads policies, with a Shopping ads account free of violations and with good product health.

France

To participate in Shopping Actions France, you’ll need to meet the following participation criteria:

  • Availability and payments in France. You’ll need to deliver to all of mainland France and fulfil from locations within France. You must accept and disburse payments using a French bank account.
  • Meet data quality criteria. Your product data will need to pass Shopping Actions France’s data quality tests.
  • Meet return standards. Accept returns for at least 14 days after delivery.
  • Meet delivery requirements:
  • Deliver in fewer than 5 business days after receiving an order.
  • Don’t charge restocking fees.
  • Don’t require special shipping services, such as freight or scheduled delivery, for Inventory you intend to sell through Shopping Actions.
  • Compliance with all other Shopping Actions policies.
  • Compliance with all other Shopping ads policies.

To qualify for Shopping Actions, retailers should adhere to Shopping ads policies, with a Shopping ads account free of violations and with good product health.

How do you use Shopping Actions?

The purpose of Shopping Ads is to drive customers to your website to check-out.

The purpose of Shopping Actions is to provide a seamless Google experience and purchase products directly on Google Express.

Google-Express-Home-Screen

Google explains that merchants using Google Shopping Actions should use it as complementary advertising to their Product Listing Ads.

Here is how you get your products listed:

  • Set up your Google Merchant Account if you don’t have one already.
  • Upload your Product Data feed to your Account.
  • Create a Google Shopping Campaign. Select Shopping Actions from the navigation panel.

Once you start the integration process, you’ll be guided through each step.

What is Google’s Shopping Actions Marketplace?

The Google Actions Marketplace offers customers a seamless shopping experience that allows them to purchase, return, and receive customer support directly from Google.

Google-Shopping-

The experience is different in the United States and France but essentially shoppers can buy products on Google, backed by Google.

If you shoppers don’t get what they were expecting, their order is late, or they need to get a refund, Google offers a similar guarantee to Amazon on products purchased on Google.

Why use Shopping Actions?

Google advises marketers that “Shopping Actions is complementary to your existing Google Shopping campaigns. It increases your overall presence on Google to drive incremental traffic, conversions and sales on top of what you’re getting today with shopping ads.”

To simplify the buying cycle Shopping Actions uses:

  • a shareable list
  • universal shopping cart
  • instant checkout

 

Unlike Amazon which actually sells products on its platform, Google acts as a referral and advertising source but they are not technically a seller. This means retailers can contact the buyer directly through the mail once the purchase has been made. Unfortunately, the seller only has access to the customer’s shipping information because their email address and other contact information remains private based on Google’s privacy policies.

If you’re a retailer in the United States or France looking to offer a seamless experience to your customers across multiple Google platforms, this program is for you!

What does the Program Cost?

Shopping Actions offers a commission from a retailer’s sale of products sold on Shopping Actions. Google sends Shopping Actions retailers a commission once a month based on referrals.

How do you Format a Shopping Actions Data Feed?

Below are the proper format your Google Shopping Data Feed directly from Google’s feed guidelines.

 

Attribute: consumer_notice

Country: US

Format: 

Required for products with consumer warning labels

Provide legally required warnings or disclosures

Example: US_CA_PROP_65

Syntax

Max 1000 characters

consumer_notice uses 2 sub-attributes:

  • notice_type (required)
  • The type of notice, one of “US_CA_PROP_65”, “safety_warning”, “legal_disclaimer
  • notice_message  (required)

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Add this attribute to display consumer warning or disclosure messages with your product, for example, indicating  the presence of dangerous chemicals.
  • The attribute can only contain  text characters and the html tags <b>, <i>, and <br>.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: product_detail

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

Technical specifications or additional details of your product

Example: 

General:Product

Type:Digital player

Syntax

product_detail uses 3 sub-attributes:

  • section_name: Max 140 characters
  • attribute_nameMax 140 characters
  • attribute_value: Max 1000 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Each product_detail requires 3 sub-attributes: section_name, attribute_name, and attribute_value.
  • Don’t add information covered in other attributes or promotion text, or list keywords or search terms.
  • Don’t add information such as price, sale price, sale dates, shipping, delivery date, other time-related information, or your company’s name.
  • Only provide an attribute name and value when the value is confirmed. For example, for a food product only provide “Vegetarian=False” if it is confirmed the product is indeed not vegetarian, and not just because False is the default value for Boolean attributes.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: product_highlight

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

The most relevant highlights of your products

Example: Supports thousands of apps, including Netflix, YouTube, and HBO Now

Syntax

Max 150 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Use between 2 and 10 product highlights.
  • Describe only the product itself.
  • Don’t use words from foreign languages, unless they’re well understood, such as a product with a foreign name or title.
  • Don’t include references to categorization systems.
  • Don’t include links to your store or other websites.
  • Don’t use capital letters for emphasis.
  • Don’t include promotional text.
  • Don’t list keywords or search terms.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: consumer_datasheet

Country: France

Format: 

Required for products with regulatory consumer information such as energy consumption data

Regulatory product data

Examples: 

Annual energy consumption:176 kWh/annum

Drying efficiency index:B

Water consumption:9900 l/annum

Syntax

Consumer_datasheet uses 2 sub-attributes:

  • attribute_name: Max 140 characters
  • Aattribute_value: Max 1000 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Use this attribute to provide regulatory product data such as, for example, energy labels.
  • Don’t use this attribute for anything other than the required regulatory information.
  • Provide the exact data, in the right order, as required by the applicable regulations.
  • Provide a name, identifying a regulatory data point, and a value. Both of these inputs are required and must be in plain text only.
  • For example “Annual energy consumption: 176 kWh/annum

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: energy_label_image_link

Country: France

Format: 

Required for products with an energy efficiency label.

When users click on the energy efficiency class, this image will be displayed.

Example: http://www.example.com /image1.jpg

Syntax

Max 2000 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: product_fee

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

Additional fees related to the product.

Example: FR éco-participation DEEE:8.99 EUR

Syntax

product_fee uses 2 sub-attributes:

  • type (required) The type of fee, for example: “FR éco-participation DEEE”,  “FR éco-participation DEA”, or “FR copie privée”
  • amount (required) ISO 4217, the total fee amount.

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Use this attribute to provide additional fees that must be paid when purchasing your product, for example government-imposed recycling fees or copyright fees.
  • Make sure you still include the price attribute with the total price for the product

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: purchase_quantity_limit

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

The limit on the number of items your customers can buy in a single order

Example: 4

Syntax

Any positive integer, 1 or greater

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Only provide this attribute when there is a realistic limit on how many items your consumers can purchase in one order.
  • Must be 1 or more

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: sell_on_google_quantity

Country: US, France

Format:

Optional

The total number of items available to sell on Google

Example: 50

Syntax

Any positive integer, 1 or greater

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • This attribute helps you specify the quantity available in stock for a given product, allowing you to control the risk of out of stock.
  • Google will take this value into account and decrement it with each order.
  • Update this attribute as frequently as possible by making calls to the Inventory set API or through a supplemental feed.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: return_address_label

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

Specify the identifier of a specific return address for certain products

Example: my_label

Syntax

Max 100 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • If you only have one return address (the default address), you do not need to make any updates to your feed.
  • If you create multiple return addresses, you will need to add the return_address_label column to your feed.
  • If the default address applies, keep this column blank.
  • If a non-default return address applies, add the label name for that address.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: return_policy_label

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

Apply a non-standard return policy for specific products.

Example: my_label

Syntax

Max 100 characters

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Use this attribute if your product has a non-standard return policy.
  • If no value is provided your default configured return policy will be applied.

_____________________________________________________________________

 

Attribute: google_funded_promotion_eligibility

Country: US, France

Format: 

Optional

Eligibility for participating in Google’s promotions.

Example: all

Supported values

  • all: The product is eligible for all Google funded promotions
  • none: The product will be excluded from all Google funded promotions

Minimum requirements at a glance:

  • Use this attribute to control eligibility of your products to participate in Google-funded promotions.

Next Steps

To ask questions or get more information on setting up your Google Shopping Actions feed contact Highstreet.io.