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Google Shopping Feed Specification and Product Taxonomy Updated

5:31 pm on Jun 10, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google has made changes for Shopping feed specifications and product taxonomy, so if you're a Google Shopping webmaster you'll need to make sure you've updated by the deadline of September 15, 2015. The only exception to that deadline is shipping.

Here's a summary of the changes.

Google Shopping Feed Specification

  • Units & Quantity attributes are now available for the US

  • We tightened guiding principles around the ID Attribute and GTINs

  • We disentangled Apparel and Variants attributes and expanded the requirements to Brazil. This revamped section is called: ‘Detailed Product Attributes and Item Groupings’

  • We are releasing stable numeric Google Product Category IDs that can also be provided as values for the Google Product Category attribute

  • We expanded the Shipping requirements to Switzerland, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain, and Japan to enable total price displays to users in these countries

Google Shopping Product Taxonomy

  • We simplified many Google Product Taxonomy paths by rolling up a number of categories to their parent nodes

  • Most of the categories under Activewear are now included with their non-active counterparts, for example, 'Active Skirts' will now be found under 'Skirts'

  • We added more categories to the verticals ‘Food, Beverages & Tobacco’ and ‘Mature’

  • Some verticals have undergone significant rework, and you may wish to revisit your provided Google Product Categories

Google Shopping Feed Specification and Product Taxonomy Updated [adwords.blogspot.com]
6:31 pm on June 10, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google know how much hassle this can be for people, hence their notice periods when changing things, why don't they put serious effort into the taxonomy so that they can give a guarantee as to how long it will be active for? Also, a tool for migration between versions of the taxonomy would help. Just telling people to look at the new taxonomy because is has changed is pretty poor, I have spent a lot of time mapping previous taxonomy changes by Google and others in many areas and it's clear that more effort needs to be put in at the start so that less change is required.

Remarkably, companies the size of Google have relied heavily on outdated taxonomies that already existed in the public domain. A prime example of this is the AdPlanner (now Display Planner) taxonomy, which clearly used DMOZ as the base for many parts of it - why rely on that when Google can afford to do much better.

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