SEO News You Can Use: Move Over Amazon, Google Shopping Now Offering Free Product Listings |

SEO News You Can Use: Move Over Amazon, Google Shopping Now Offering Free Product Listings

SEO News You Can Use

eCommerce dominates the retail industry and will likely continue its stranglehold of the sector well after this coronavirus pandemic has subsided. Brick-and-mortar stores probably won’t be a part of the new world order. So in a bold (but necessary) move, Google has opened up its shopping tab to free product listings.

For many industries, “returning to normal” post-pandemic is just a fantasy. Shopping outlets and malls are a prime example of a sector that may not survive the fallout of COVID-19. Retailers are forced to pivot and embrace the eCommerce game if they hope to outlast this recession.

Google Shopping making this change to its product search offering is a big deal. Unpaid product listings optimized and identified by Google’s algorithm will dominate the results on the search engine’s shopping tab. Google Shopping used to offer free listings but moved to only paid product listings in 2012. The reason for the move to paid only products had to do with quality control concerns and an inability to ensure the product feed information matched the data on the site.

Bill Ready, president of Google’s commerce division, has openly stated in a blog post that COVID-19 is the reason behind this move. Google Shopping is making an effort to support struggling retailers during this time — that’s nice. However, it’s no secret, advertisers have no budgets and Amazon is taking over the world — two major problems that threaten Google from a business perspective.

No one can shy away from the fact that digital marketing spend is at an all-time low and online advertising budgets are slashed, but online shopping has simultaneously experienced a massive upsurge. Jeff Bezos has reportedly enjoyed adding a cool $24 billion to his personal wealth. With this in mind, it makes sense that Google chose to make a strategic move to recoup the enormous loss of many companies’ marketing budgets.

Taking advantage of this free listings option is simple for SEOs and eCommerce aficionados who’ve previously engaged in eCommerce optimization on Amazon or the like. And, if you want to ensure you remain ahead of your competitors, you can continue to make use of the paid option. If you need more assistance or are new to eCommerce, Google will help you out. Check out its help center piece explaining the steps to take.

Google claims this change will be fully operational before the end of April throughout the U.S. and will be available globally before the end of the year.

More SEO News You Can Use

Google Helps You Choose What to Watch: Being stuck in lockdown gives you the time to catch up on the list of movies and series you’ve been meaning to watch. Google is preventing you from being overwhelmed by offering you Watchlist, connected to your Google account. Here’s the full story.

Does Your Gender Matter in the SEO Industry? This is the topic raised by Jessica Foster of Search Engine Journal in her most recent article. Sexism is a tricky topic to unpack, but in the SEO industry, it seems to be a subject in need of addressing. Check out her article here, where she speaks of both her positive and negative experiences as a woman in the SEO space.

If There Are No Great Search Results to Meet Your Query, Google Will Let You Know: In a tiny update to Google’s algorithm, the search engine will now let you know if it can’t find high-quality and relevant search results to your query. It will also give you tips on how to refine your search so you can find the answers you need. Here’s the full article and a bunch of tips on smart searching from Search Engine Journal.

Lift the Shroud of Mystery Around Content Syndication and Learn How to Use It: Ahrefs’ recently published article on content syndication is comprehensive and answers all the questions around this content marketing practice. You will learn what to do and how to do it so your content works harder for you. Certainly that’s advice all marketers should heed during these times.

This Latest Workfront Whitepaper is Packed With 6 Great Martech Ideas: Workfront has crafted a whitepaper that offers insights into creating the best martech strategy to meet your business needs and marketing goals. It focuses on six actionable steps that will help your business remain flexible when your industry is in flux. Get your free downloaded copy here.

Editor’s Note: “SEO News You Can Use” is a weekly blog post posted every Monday morning only on, rounding up all the top SEO news from around the world. Our goal is to make a one-stop-shop for everyone looking for SEO news, education and for hiring an SEO expert with our comprehensive SEO agency directory.

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