Google expanded eligibility for Merchant Listing search experiences and product snippets through the use of structured data. This change affects merchants, product review sites and product information aggregator sites.
Merchant Center feeds are no longer necessary to be eligible for product rich results.
There are also two new reports in Google search console.
Google’s announcement stated:
“Initially, product snippets in Google search results were primarily powered by schema.org Product structured data, and merchant listing experiences were primarily powered by product details supplied via a Google Merchant Center feed.
Now merchants can be eligible for merchant listing experiences by providing product data on web pages without a Google Merchant Center account.
This improved eligibility has in part been made possible by recent extensions to product-related properties and types in schema.org for areas such as apparel sizing and energy efficiency ratings.”
Enhanced Product Experiences in Search
Enhanced experiences, sometimes referred to as rich results, are search features that can show images and provide more information than a regular search snippet.
When merchants use the appropriate structured data they will become eligible to have their products displayed for sale directly from the search results.
Google highlighted two product related search experiences:
- Popular Products
- Product Snippet
The popular products search experience displays images of the products right in the search results.
Google published an example of a popular products in search:
The other kind of rich result that has expanded eligibility is called a product snippet.
Example of a Product Snippet
New Search Console Reports
Google also announced that it is removing from Search Console the Product structured data report and replacing it with two new reports.
The new reports that are viewable within Search Console are:
Merchants that sell products should use the merchant listing report. This report shows structured data issues related to the free listing experiences.
Sites that publish product reviews or don’t sell products but use product structured data should use this report.
This report shows structured data problems related to product snippets in search.
The product snippets report absorbs the old product structured data report. The data from the old report is now available within this new report.
Free Product Listing Experiences Documentation
Google updated the documentation for the Free Listing Experiences.
The updated documentation now features more information related to how merchants can qualify for free listing rich results through the use of product structured data.
Google’s announcement of expanded merchant listings eligibility
Google Product structured data documentation
Featured image by Shutterstock/Ljupco Smokovski
Screenshots by Author