[dropcap]T[/dropcap]hink you and your business are ready to start selling your products through Google Shopping? Think again…before setting up your product feed, make sure you are first in total compliance with Google’s terms and conditions or risk getting shut down from Google Merchant Center all-together for days, even weeks, mid-way through the setup process.
As a digital marketing agency heavily involved in pay per click, Google Shopping and PLAs, one thing we often see is clients getting disapproved from Merchant Center for no apparent reason other than not meeting Google’s terms and conditions. This process can be a major headache to deal with; for one thing it brings your Google Shopping setup process to a complete halt before it gets off the ground.
Secondly, figuring out exactly why your site has been disapproved is another process all on its own. Once your Merchant Center has been suspended it is often left solely to the merchant to figure out why the suspension has occurred in the first place before re-submitting for approval.
Lastly, once you do make the appropriate changes to align with Google’s terms it takes about 48 hours for Google to re-approve your site so you can continue setting up the product feed.
How do you avoid a Merchant Center Suspension? As it turns out, one very common thing that we have been seeing is that a lot of merchants are being suspended for not having clear billing and returns policies listed clearly on ALL checkout pages. Chances are there are links pointing to an entire page with your store’s terms and conditions and maybe you have even gotten away with this in Merchant Center in the past – not anymore. Google has started to enforce this policy, even explicitly stating that links to a Billing and Returns policy, even if on every checkout page, will not suffice.
So… before you set up your Google Shopping PLAs in AdWords, before you set your pay per click budget, and even before you upload your shopping feed, make sure you add ‘clear and concise’ billing and returns information to every single checkout page, as per Google, or risk a time consuming delay.