In response to COVID-19 which has led most retailers now relying upon online shopping as their lifeline, Google is making sales with Google Shopping free for merchants.
It comes as Google acknowledges that not all retailers have the resources to sell online at scale. There are hundreds of millions of shopping searches done each day, which now merchants will be able to tap into at a low cost. In return, shoppers will be able to see many more products.
From this week, search results on the Google Shopping tab will mostly feature free listings. Merchant products will be visible regardless of whether they advertise on Google.
For existing users of Merchant Center and Shopping ads, this change will be automatic. Advertisers can now augment paid campaigns with free listings. The above-mentioned changes will go live in the U.S. before the end of April and go globally before the end of the year.
In addition to that, Google is launching a partnership with PayPal to enable merchants to link their accounts. Existing partnerships include Shopify, WooCommerce, and Bigcommerce – e-commerce platforms favorited by many businesses.
Bill Ready, President of Google Commerce says:“As consumers increasingly shop online, they’re searching not just for essentials but also things like toys, apparel, and home goods. While this presents an opportunity for struggling businesses to reconnect with consumers, many cannot afford to do so at scale.”
Such tremendous and financially beneficial changes in these unprecedented times mean huge support from Google to its merchants. On the other hand, it is highly advantageous for Google too, as more sellers are on the marketplace, more choice customers have and thus more repeat and new purchases customers can make, thus tapping into the network effects paradigm. Also, it can be seen as a competitive move to strengthen Google’s position in product search, since Amazon had surpassed Google a few years ago and is the most used search engine by shoppers currently.
What this Means for Businesses
If your business is already advertising with Google Shopping – great news, now your paid campaigns can be adjusted with free listings. If you sell products and are new to Google Shopping – this is an excellent time to start selling on the marketplace – and we can help you do so.
Fill out our contact form to receive our specialist advice on how to adjust your strategy to maximize the benefit to your company from these market changes.