Anyone can upload their product to Google. Doing it correctly and getting it found is the trick, followed by getting it seen before your competition’s items. So, as a small or micro-seller what can you do to improve your ranking?
First, the obvious
- Title - use key phrases, this is organic search. “Suggested maximum length of 70 characters”. For example the angel Christmas ornament shown below was listed for a long time as “Repro Victorian Die Cut Embossed Christmas Angel Ornament” all of which are good accurate describing words, but many do not rank high on searched words. I am hoping that using “Christmas Ornament Swedish Angel Tree Candle” will do better.
- Price - lower ranks higher among comparables
- Description - 150 characters and spaces will be your ‘hook’, what appears in the Google Shopping search. Use the key words and phrases you couldn’t get into your title, do not repeat within the first 100 characters and spaces. Bullets seem to gain brownie points. As an example here are the first 150 characters and spaces in my ad. “Large angel or Saint Lucia carrying a lighted candle and a Christmas tree This is a beautiful old fashioned paper ornament reproduced from an antique” note that I have eliminated commas and periods to be able to get in the word “antique”. Rules for Google Checkout Buy Now buttons are a little different, you put your 100 character description into the button maker so what you write next to the picture has very little weight.
No duplication: this is a new Google rule. You may list the same product on many venues, your website etc. but Google will reject the listing, even with different price, description, title etc. The policy is very clear.
“We do not permit duplicate products in the same account or between multiple accounts. If products are available on multiple sites under the same ownership, one site must be chosen to exclusively submit those products. For example, if you own two websites that sell the same product, you may not submit that product for both sites, regardless of pricing or promotional differences.”
Attributes are simply data written in a form Google can access and translate.
Here is where it gets tricky. Google has very strict rules and they are (oddly) not very good at making them easy to find. Here is a complete list of all attributes defined by Google Product Search in the new Merchant Center.
Some attributes are required, leave them out and your product is out. If you are selling on a Marketplace venue that submits feeds to Google they should, if they know what they are doing, submit the information you have included in your listing.
- condition - choose from new, used or refurbished
- description - Google says “Text, up to a maximum length of 10,000 characters. Ideally greater than 15 characters and 3 words. Do not include promotional or boilerplate text, such as “Free shipping!” or “Click here now!”
- id - A unique alphanumeric identifier for the item i.e your SKU If you sell on Bonanzle the site allocates an identifier if you do not.
- link - The URL of the web page associated with the item. This should not forward to another URL; it must point directly to the target page.
- price - fixed price only, use this format 4.95 or 20.00, free items do not appear in Google Product Search.
- title - Google does not like all CAPS, non relevant symbols like exclamation points, asterisks, more information is found in Editorial Guidelines
The not so secret search boosters
- Offer Google Checkout; this should not come as a surprise. The argument that you only offer PayPal because it is required on eBay will cost you ranking on your website items.
- Use the optional payment_accepted and payment_notes attributes in your website feed. On Bonanzle, which does xml feeds, add this at the bottom of your listing. [[ payment_accepted:Visa payment_accepted:Cash payment_accepted:Mastercard payment_notes:Google Checkout]] Be sure to leave no space on either side between the colon and the attribute but do leave a space between multiple attributes, which (on Bonanzle) must all be enclosed in the one set of brackets.
- Reviews - Think of Google Checkout Reviews as Google Feedback. As Bonanzle sellers we all need to get into the habit of completing Google Checkout reviews on our eligible purchases on the site. They carry an incredible amount of ranking weight. The more sellers with positive reviews we have on Bonanzle the better we will all do.
To enable reviews on purchases check off the review box when you make a payment. Google will email you a review form after you have had time to receive the purchased item. To make reviews on past Google Checkout purchases and learn more about the Google seller review process click here.
Christmas Ornament Swedish Angel with Tree and Candle $5.00
Large angel or Saint Lucia carrying a lighted candle and a Christmas tree This is a beautiful old fashioned paper ornament reproduced from an antique. A complex die cut (with interior cuts, not just around the outside) she is printed on both sides, embossed, and has a gold hanging cord.
Shipping to anywhere in the USA is included in the price.
Size approximately 5-3/4′ tall and 4″ across