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Weekly News: Google to enforce unique product identifiers on free merchant listings

Google to enforce unique product identifiers on free merchant listings

Google will start enforcing the requirements to have unique product identifiers on your product listing feeds with Google Merchant Center tomorrow, September 15, 2021, the search company announced.

What are unique product identifiers (UPIs). Google said a unique product identifier, also known as UPIs, are considered products that include Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs), Manufacturer Part Numbers (MPNs), and brand names in the product feed you submit to Google Merchant Center.

Enforcement begins tomorrow. Google said “in order to unify the enforcement of UPIs across programs, specifically the enforcement for multiple different products that use the same GTIN, we’re expanding this enforcement and applying it to products listed in free listings.”

This enforcement begins tomorrow, Google said, “beginning September 15, 2021, the following enforcement will apply to products shown in free listings.”

What enforcement will occur? Google said it may disapprove product feeds if they do not have UPIs. Google said “different products that use the same GTIN with the same variant attributes will be considered ambiguous and will be disapproved.” This includes “variant attributes” that include condition [condition] and multipack [multipack] for all products, as well as color [color] and [size] for apparel products, the company said. Also, Google said “if a group of products are identified as duplicates, only one will remain active and eligible to show in free listings.”

Read more: Google to enforce unique product identifiers on free merchant listings

How much of the market do you really own?

With 94,000 Google searches per second, search delivers very high intent traffic. By measuring your share of those intent signals, you can gain a reliable and predictive metric for brand share. 

With accurate share of search data, you can answer important questions about your overall market strategy. How does your brand performance compare to that of your competitors? How do different brands within your own portfolio stack up against one another? How much available demand are you actually capturing? 

A quick review of “share of”

Market share is the portion of a market controlled by a particular company or product. It’s usually calculated by dividing the total company sales by total industry sales. Relative market share indexes a brand’s market share against that of its leading competitor. Market concentration, a related metric, measures the degree to which a comparatively small number of firms account for a large proportion of the market.

Use cases for share of search

Les Binet, who has studied share of search extensively, has identified it as a good proxy for market share (or imminent market share growth) because people generally seek information on things they already have or are about to buy. 

That simple correlation is just the beginning. The array of use cases for the share of search metric is surprisingly broad because of the variety of ways you can set up which search terms to include.

Read more: How much of the market do you really own?

Messy SEO Part 2: The importance of canonicalization

This second installment for “Messy SEO” details my process of rectifying the canonicalization issues that arose following the MarTech website consolidation. In Part 1 we discussed fixes for duplicate content issues—redirects. Fixing these issues is expected to address our site’s issue with diluted rankings and a decreased crawl budget.

Proper page canonicalization ultimately serves the searcher in the long run. It makes it easier for them to find the content we’ve created that best meets their needs.

A crowd of canonicals

As mentioned in our introductory “Messy SEO” article, the new MarTech site was born from the consolidation of Marketing Land and MarTech Today. And between the hundreds of pages between each property, there was a large number of canonical URLs. What’s more, they were pointing to now non-existent pages.

Aligning 

In our site’s situation, the pages that used to be housed on Marketing Land and MarTech Today more often than not contained canonical tags pointing to their previous iterations. So, when Google and other search engines crawl these pages they will receive a signal stating that the canonical version of the content lies on non-existent domains. This won’t add more non-existent URLs into the index, but it will make it take longer to remove the versions that are still listed in the SERPS (of which there are many).

What happens to the old URLs?

So, we’ve decided what to do about the current canonical tags. We’re going to be replacing the MarTech Today and Marketing Land URLs with the newly consolidated MarTech URLs. This leaves many URLs out there, both in the SERPS and on the MarTech site itself. 

Read more: Messy SEO Part 2: The importance of canonicalization

Drive revenue and relationships in a buyer-first world

In this live webinar, marketing experts share how you can convert more leads to revenue with connected buying experiences.

Buyers are using a full range of channels to do their own research and make decisions quickly, so it’s up to marketers to play a larger role to support the full buyer’s process to provide the right information at the right time to nurture new and growing customers.

Read more: Drive revenue and relationships in a buyer-first world

Google to enforce unique product identifiers on free merchant listings

What are unique product identifiers (UPIs). Google said a unique product identifier, also known as UPIs, are considered products that include Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs), Manufacturer Part Numbers (MPNs), and brand names in the product feed you submit to Google Merchant Center.

Enforcement begins tomorrow. Google said “in order to unify the enforcement of UPIs across programs, specifically the enforcement for multiple different products that use the same GTIN, we’re expanding this enforcement and applying it to products listed in free listings.”

This enforcement begins tomorrow, Google said, “beginning September 15, 2021, the following enforcement will apply to products shown in free listings.”

What enforcement will occur? Google said it may disapprove product feeds if they do not have UPIs. Google said, “different products that use the same GTIN with the same variant attributes will be considered ambiguous and will be disapproved.” This includes “variant attributes” that include condition [condition] and multipack [multipack] for all products, as well as color [color] and [size] for apparel products, the company said. Also, Google said, “if a group of products is identified as duplicates, only one will remain active and eligible to show in free listings.”

Read more: Google to enforce unique product identifiers on free merchant listings

More news: Google News app will display non-AMP content

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