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This 32 message thread spans 2 pages: 32 ( [1] 2 > >     
Any Froogle Data Feed Questions?
Let's start discussing this area - which I feel is lacking.

 2:33 pm on Dec 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

With the little experience on the Froogle Data feed, I'd like to submit some kind of FAQs on the Data feed format itself. I am sure it would be useful to everybody here - so ask your questions away...everyone else & I can try and answer them. Let's then compile them to FAQs...



 7:50 pm on Dec 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

Dear Mervynj,
I'm still waiting for the instruction email (filled out the form already) - can you give us an abridged version of the email, with the feed creation/formula information?

I'd like to have a headstart creating it, so I can upload right away when I'm contacted.



 8:43 pm on Dec 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

Welcome to Webmasterworld bcolflesh! :)


 9:13 pm on Dec 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

Sure - no problem - is there any way I can upload the PDF file here?


 10:33 pm on Dec 31, 2002 (gmt 0)

how about posting a small sample of the feed code. If you read the pdf from them it makes sense but it would be nice to double check the format before upload.


 6:25 am on Jan 1, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi I have my instructions but need some guidance on how to set it up does any one have an example of the file they can post as a reference to check and see if Im doing it right before I upload? I have about 500 items so any help would save my typing all day for naught!


 9:33 am on Jan 8, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have received a note from Google saying that my Froogle data feed format is incorrect. A single record of the code I uploaded (with real details excluded) for one product looked like this :-

product_url name description price image_url category offer_id
[mydomain.com...] Product 1 Desciption The text here explaining about the product. 199

The note from Google included the following explanation :-

"For one product's ID, a description was in place instead
of a URL. And in some cases, you did not have a price field."

All the records in my file were in the same format as the example above. Anyone know where I'm going wrong?

Emma McCreary

 1:38 am on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

When I tried to upload my data-feed to their server, it wouldn't let me. It came up with an error message saying "Can't upload - Retry/Ignore/Abort". Retry resulted in same and Ignore made it seem like it was uploading but then nothing showed up. I emailed them and asked what was up but I haven't heard back. It's only been about 2 days though. Did anyone else have this problem?

I tried both a .txt file and a .zip file.

Also I have another question. I used Excel to set up my information and then saved it as a tab-deliniated file. The only problem is that if there is a comma in a field Excel will put quotes around it and escape the other quotes with a quote like it says to in the PDF manual if you want to quote things. The only problem is that it doesn't quote ALL the fields, just the ones with commas. So it's inconsistent. Is there a way to make Excel do one or the other? Or do people use a different program to make these files?


 2:10 am on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

Sorry - guys! Had gone out of town for a couple of days:


There is a small error in your listing. Price & Image URL need to have some values. In the same example. You just need to include a price and an URL for the image of the product.

Your problem seems new to me. Can you explain how you seem to get Abort/Retry/Ignore with more detail? Is it a problem with your FTP software?

Yes, Excel seems to be a bad choice for a larger number of products. I am not sure we have a lot of options though.:)


 2:32 am on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

"...For one product's ID, a description was in place instead of a URL. And in some cases, you did not have a price field."

All the records in my file were in the same format as the example above. Anyone know where I'm going wrong?


While I'm still waiting for my own confirmation that the google feed has been uploaded in the proper format, I have other experience with "parsing" tab delimited format files.

Usually, when this type of error occurs, it is due to "invisible" embedded formatting codes resulting from copying and pasting data from a webpage or other application. Hard spaces or hard returns might be embedded in your original spreadsheet, and you might not see this if you are using a program such as excel to format your text.

What I do when copying and pasting data? I have a temporary text document opened on my "desktop". I copy the information from a webpage, paste it into a pure text document, then copy it from the text document and paste it into the spreadsheet.

The embedded return marks will offset all of your subsequent data fields, which will cause some fields to appear with empty data, and others to appear with the wrong data.

If you examine your end tab-delimited .txt file with a text viewer, you might be able to visually see this if word wrap is turned off. Having been made aware of the potential problem, you might be able to examine your original spreadsheet and discover the embedded formatting. The end text document should not have any strange formatting marks.

I hope this helps!



 8:03 am on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)


You say ... "You just need to include a price and an URL for the image of the product"

In my example the price is given as 199. What has been omitted are values for "image_url", "category" and "offer_id". This was deliberate either because they are not relevant, or in the case of an image I hadn't decided which to use. Should I just put any value in for those fields, or should I remove the field names if not being used?


 8:26 am on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

JonnyWales, image_url is required if you have images on your website - you should insert a value there even if it points to a "image coming soon" image.

Has anyone had their list active on froogle without getting a confirmation by feed support? We have uploaded ours, asked for confirmation, but no answer or update for weeks now.


 1:50 pm on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes, FlashRed is right. Image not available - does not apply - kind of image too, helps. And you need to include the category that your product belongs to. I hear it speeds up your inclusion if you try to stick to Froogle's categories/category structure.


 4:12 pm on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

how long does it usually take for the fed Items to show up?
any one have that experience yet? :)

Emma McCreary

 7:57 pm on Jan 9, 2003 (gmt 0)


I use CuteFTP all the time to upload my websites and I've never gotten this error before. I just double-clicked the file or dragged it onto the upload error like normal, and it said "Can't upload file - retry/ignore/abort". And now, since I hit "Ignore", it just looks like it's uploading but then it isn't listed there when it's done.

I noticed when I log in it says "Access Restrictions Apply". I'm baffled.


 2:13 pm on Jan 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

We have a couple of static sites. One with about 20 items, the other with about 10. I will have to do the data feed file manually, and Excell looked like a good way to do it. That is untll I reread the instructions. The file is tab delimited, but the header and the lines for each item must end in a Carriage return or new line character.

I've submitted a couple of questions to Google about the feed, but it will be a week or two before they answer. I'll post them here in case anyone has already received answers to them.

I have a data sheet for each item. It includes a description, photo, link to order, and price information. It also includes more information, such as technical specigications, features, and typical applications. My data feed will include the description exactly as it appears on the data sheet, the url of the photo, and the price that appears on the data sheet. My question was, will the extra information on the data sheet cause them to reject my feed. In other words, do I have to have a page with JUST the decription, image, price and link to order?

My other questions had to do with multiple models of the same product. Lets say I was selling hard drives. The hard drives are all alike, except they have different capacities. I have them all on the same data sheet at the same url, with a single photo. The only difference is that each model has a different capacity and a different price, The guidelines seem to indicate, on page four, that you should not create a new line unless there is a different product_url and image_url. So what price do I put in the feed? Just the lowest one?



 2:52 pm on Jan 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

Wow! Snowbird these are great questions. I am sure many would have the same.

Ok. To answer your questions...
1. No you don't need your product page to have ONLY the information that you submit to Froogle. I don't think you EVEN need to include ALL what is in the Feed in your product pages. What you need to do (which is what you've already done) is keep the product page AND the feed consistent with the information about your products. This is what is important

2. I think multiple capacities are multiple products. For all practical purposes they are different products. It doesn't matter if they have the same price or the same URL or the same Image. Ultimately different products. So enter them as different products - but with the same URL.

I hope I've answered your questions.


 3:10 pm on Jan 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have the same question as trailex... If your feed is valid, how long does it take to show up in the listings?

In my case, I sent my first feed up on the 6th. As requested, I sent an email to feed-support telling them that I had sent up my first feed - I got an autoresponder back saying that I would hear something in ten days.

If I knew that everybody else's feeds were getting added to the index, then I would know that I have a format problem....(without waiting the 10 days for a response from feeds-support).


 3:36 pm on Jan 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

I used excel to set up my feed and went through and cleaned it up after words deleting unnecessary characters, I as wingslevel stated uploaded and posted a response to froogle support of my upload, I have looked for my products, in froogle and have found none from my feed, although I noticed google now has all of my products crawled and listed is this the same? and is it only a matter of time before they fall into froogle search results? :)

Keep the Adventure Alive!


[edited by: trailex at 3:38 pm (utc) on Jan. 10, 2003]


 3:37 pm on Jan 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

On an average it takes about a week to 10 days - but who's to say? :-).

Anyway, I hear it might be faster if you try to keep your category classification to Froogle's own. This makes sense as Froogle says that they spend some time in mapping your category structure to theirs.




 5:09 am on Jan 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

We received our email confirmation from froogle that our file (created using Excel txt tab delim) was properly formatted.

Froogle feed support did request that we use the largest images in the image_url link (we have two sizes for images to improve page load time, but users can view detailed pic if they wish).

This confirmation came after asking for a second time (with three weeks in between).

Remember this is beta, and so I suspect Froogle are far more concerned with getting searches working well rather than helping us get our results included ;).


 5:23 am on Jan 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Emma, froogle feeds can only be done once per day -- access restrictions in place include (i) no dir listing, (ii) cannot overwrite files, (iii) probably others...

MervynJ -- you are definitely correct in that people should conform to Froogle structure, though I suspect it will only be time before this is a prerequisit, and above all, good practice to help Froogle help their searches.


 2:50 pm on Jan 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

This is probably the right thread for the following:

I used WS_FTP. The right hand box though (ie: Froogle) is blank, even AFTER upload. Very strange, considering the upload seems to be accepted OK.

Any clues anyone? Is this common? Anyone rolling successfully with regular data feeds via WS-FTP?

I FTP'd the TXT file back on Dec 17th and also emailed Froogle asking them to check it. There is nothing in the index yet and no feedback. I wonder whether the latter is a good sign or not!


 4:14 pm on Jan 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

As FlashRed says the permissions say that there is no DIR listing, meaning you can't see the list of files at the FTP location of Froogle. Obviously this is so that one cannot view others' files(names). I know this could be a problem as it doesn't give us the feedback / confirmation that our upload was successful, but what's to be done - I guess we have to live with it.


Lawd Have Mercy

 11:18 pm on Jan 11, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi All,

I used WS_FTP and it worked fine. I made my first data feed and then waited for Google to okay it. They got back to me quickly and told me the only problem I had was putting a space before and after the ">" in the product catagory i.e. product > sub product > sub sub produuct.

I also asked about the descripption at that time and they quickly replyed:

"We prefer the full length product descriptions that appear on your product pages. Although the full text will not be displayed on our web page, we search the text of the description to help us provide better search

For all of you who are having problems with the feed I used a free online service that made my .txt file for me (because I sure couldn't do it myself!). Search under "Froogle".

Finally, I have something to offer the community! Yippee! :)



 5:09 am on Jan 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I finally received a confirmation from froogle on my submission there was an error quotations around my categories, I corrected this and they approved my feed yee haw! I used excel to create it, I did try mervyns froogle wizard worked great except the max products is 5! I have 300 anxiously awaiting an unlimited version, excel will do the trick for me for now though thanks for the input if I find any more or stumble on some other tips Ill be back! :)


 10:18 am on Jan 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have a one product site selling a particular business software product for which there are a number of different versions. For my Froogle submission what information should I supply for Category? Can I simply use somehing like "Business Software" and leave it at that?


 2:44 pm on Jan 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

Couple of things:
anxiously awaiting an unlimited version

Trailex - thanks for your comments. I am a little embarrassed...Anyway, I am working on it. It should be released very very soon.

I have a one product site selling a particular business software product for which there are a number of different versions. For my Froogle submission what information should I supply for Category? Can I simply use somehing like "Business Software" and leave it at that?

Yes, after thinking hard - I think you should just leave it at Business Software. You should (if you want) mention the version on the product name. That way when customers see a listing - they know what they are getting.


 2:33 pm on Jan 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

We recieved an email from Froogle letting us know our feed had been approved on 15th Jan, they have appeared today 17th Jan as they said -- there was a 2 day delay.

It seems a bit odd how Froogle is ranking products at this stage -- they have a long way to go.


 2:40 pm on Jan 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hey FlashRed, you got your notice that your feed was approved on the 15th....do you remember when you ftp'd it to them?

I sent mine on the 6th, and still nothing...

This 32 message thread spans 2 pages: 32 ( [1] 2 > >
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