On May 3rd 2011 Google shopping will be requiring product identifiers on all non-clothing and non-custom made goods. I’m sure most of our sellers are aware of this because we’ve had a note at the top of the Offeritem sell an item form for weeks. This reminder was added because many categories required product identifiers even in the past. Product identifiers also help sellers gain better visibility. For more information on gaining greater visibility in Google shopping, please see Google shopping optimization.
Since Google is very good at generating sales for merchants by driving traffic to stores, it is recommended that sellers focus more on adding the required product identifiers.
When listing your items, if you sell media items such as music, movies or video games, please add the UPC number in the UPC field. UPC numbers are usually found below the barcode. Please see the picture on the left.
If selling books, please add the ISBN-10 or ISBN-13 in the ISBN field. The ISBN number can usually be found on the back of the cover where the barcode is located. Please see the picture to the left for a better idea of what to look for. Please also note that some books may not have ISBN numbers and Google is well aware of this. If this is the case, please don’t worry about adding the ISBN.
On all other categories, please add at least 2 of the following 3 identifiers, brand, MPN or UPC. Of course it wouldn’t hurt to add all 3 identifiers to your listings if you have all this information.
If you no longer have the packaging that your item came in, you may be able find the product identifiers on Wikipedia or Google shopping.
When searching Google shopping, you basically have to look for items that have been added to the Google shopping catalogue. For example, I searched for wbr-1310 (which is the model number of a router) and Google returned 188 results. The items that are within the catalogue have a compare button located to the right of the listing as shown in the picture below.
Click the compare button and you will be taken to the listing page where you can easily find the MPN for your item. Please see the highlighted area in the picture below for more information on finding the MPN (manufacturer part numbers) and UPC numbers.
Google is requesting this additional information because they are focusing on grouping more items together as shown in the pictures above. This will help reduce clutter and make search results more relevant. Ultimately, this will help shoppers find things a lot faster. While this may seem like an inconvenience to some sellers, I honestly believe that this move will increase traffic and sales.