Google has officially announced a series of new policies and updates that are effective immediately and forthcoming later this year. These updates aim to streamline operations for vendors, enhance user experience and maintain regulatory compliance across various regions.
New Shipping Requirements Effective from June 2023
Effective June 2023, Google expanded its shipping policy to cover multiple countries where the submission of shipping prices is mandatory. The new countries on this list include Denmark, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Slovakia, Greece, Hungary, Romania, Brazil, India, and New Zealand.
Vendors who observe sudden disapproval of their products due to missing shipping details can attribute this change to the recent policy update, which may not have been a concern earlier.
Certification Attribute for Electronic Goods Introduced
An update has also been launched for sellers offering electronic goods with an energy efficiency rating. A new attribute known as ‘certification‘ has been introduced, which must be included if the targeted selling country mandates this information. Notably, most EU countries are among those requiring this detail.
Mandatory Availability Attribute for Local Inventory Ads
In addition, the ‘availability’ attribute has become a requirement. This may not affect most vendors as it is already commonly included in local inventory feeds.
Clear Display of Pricing Information Required
Even though this has always been a requirement, Google is becoming stricter with website pricing information. It will disapprove or suspend listings if multiple prices are unclear. Google now necessitates that vendors distinctly outline each type of price – be it MRP, RRP, Members Only Price, Original Currency, etc.
The rule of thumb is always to display the price that customers are expected to pay first, followed by any other prices in equal or smaller font sizes. Every additional price must clearly state what it corresponds to, i.e., MRP, RRP, etc.
Expiry Date Extension for Offers – An Update to Look Forward to in July 2023
Shopify users who often face product expiration status due to the inability of their app to update or resubmit data can breathe a sigh of relief. This issue, particularly prominent with the Google & YouTube app, will be mitigated with a forthcoming update on 18th July 2023.
Once this update is live, Google will automatically extend the expiry date of your product every time it crawls your product landing page and finds the product is still active. This feature will save vendors the trouble of resubmitting their data every 28 days.
Stricter Enforcement of Availability Status Coming in September 2023
Starting 1st September 2023, Google will tighten its regulations around product availability. Any inaccuracies in product availability labeling, such as marking back-ordered items as ‘in stock’ or ‘out of stock,’ will result in product disapproval.
These policy updates indicate Google’s ongoing efforts to enhance transparency, accountability, and efficiency for vendors and customers.