Goodbye Merchant Center, hello Merchant Center Next.
Today at Google Marketing Live, Google officially unveiled a new, simplified version of Merchant Center, called Merchant Center Next.
More than just the look and feel of Merchant Center Next will change. For example, products can be automatically populated from a merchant’s website.
Why we care. This new change should remove the headaches from less technical folks struggling with feeds while also bringing better insights for those data-hungry retailers. The Insights within the Performance tab look promising, especially for those prioritizing product error fixes.
Merchant Center Next vs. Merchant Center. Merchant Center has been a manual process consisting of setting up a product feed along with all required products, pricing, imagery, descriptions and more.
Merchant Center Next will detect all of this from your website and pull it in automatically. There’s good news, though: merchants can edit said products or turn the feature off entirely.
While the experience is dubbed as a “simplified one,” according to Google, “the features of Merchant Center that larger retailers know and love won’t be going anywhere either.”
Google is “committed to rolling out the new version at a responsible pace that brings users over when they can expect feature parity that meets their expectations.”
Better Insights. One significant change will be to the user interface. A streamlined view will bring insight reports directly into the Performance tab.
This appears to contain more data with new tabs shown that include:
- Products (existed previously)
- Competitive visibility
- Store on Search and Maps
- Non-product website results
Merchant Center Next will show all those merchants with online and brick-and-mortar locations all products in one view to help manage online and in-store product inventory in one destination, according to Google.
New insights will also be displayed on the benefits of fixing product errors within Merchant Center Next.
When Merchant Center Next will replace Merchant Center. The plan is for the rollout to be completed in 2024. Merchants will be notified when Merchant Center Next is ready for them.
Many new users have already seen Merchant Center Next rolled out to them. Smaller businesses will be upgraded in the coming months.
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