Before you begin
When you agree with a merchant to place Shopping ads or free listings for them, you have the following options:
- Create a new Merchant Center account for that merchant in a multi-client account (MCA) that is associated with your CSS.
- Request to switch the merchant’s existing Merchant Center account from a different CSS to your CSS.
How to switch a merchant account to your CSS
If you decide to switch your merchant’s existing account, you can initiate an account switch by providing the Merchant Center account’s ID when you click “Add a merchant” on the “Overview“ page in CSS Center. You can specify if you want to associate the account directly with your CSS, or place the account under a specific MCA that is associated with your CSS.
- No valid Merchant Center account ID is provided.
- The switch request doesn’t meet all necessary requirements.
Reasons a switch request may fail include:
- The account to be switched is a primary CSS MCA.
- You’ve requested to place an MCA under another MCA.
- The account to be switched is a marketplace MCA sub-account.
- The account to be switched is in a grace period for another account switch.
- The CSS doesn’t have admin access to the MCA under which the account is to be placed.
After you’ve initiated an account switch, admins of the Merchant Center account are notified of your request, and can approve or decline the request in their Merchant Center account. After the switch has been approved by a Merchant Center account admin, the old CSS of that account is notified, and it will take a grace period of up to 14 days for the switch to take place. During the grace period, the merchant can still revert their decision and decide to stay with the old CSS instead. Note that the old CSS can decide to waive the grace period.
You can find the status of account switch requests in the ”Account switches” report in the “Reports” section in CSS Center. Completed switches can be viewed in the ”Account history” report.
How to switch a merchant account from your CSS
If a merchant decides to work with a different CSS and a Merchant Center admin approves a switch request from that CSS, you will be notified of this switch. The switch will take place following a 14-day grace period after it has been approved by the merchant. Keep in mind that a merchant could still cancel the switch during the grace period, but after that period the switch is final. You can decide to waive or shorten this 14-day grace period for merchants leaving your CSS on the “Business info“ page in CSS Center.
Notifications and steps for account switch
The following table describes the notifications and changes you can expect to see when a merchant account is switched from one CSS to another. (Note that "MSA" refers to the mandatory service announcements that may be sent to account users.)
|Action||New CSS admin user initiates switch in CSS Center||Admin user approves the change in Merchant Center||[Grace period]||Account switched to new CSS|
|MC account||Email sent to all admins of the MC account||Email sent to all admins of the MC account||Account set to switch (pending decline by MC account admin)||Email sent to all admins of the MC account|
|New CSS account||MC account shown as “pending” in CSS Center||Email sent to all CSS users opted into MSAs||MC account shown as “approved” in CSS Center||Email sent to all CSS users opted into MSAs||
MC account shown as “completed” in CSS Center
MC account visible in “Merchant accounts” and “Account history”
|Current CSS account||Email sent to all CSS users opted into MSAs||Email sent to all CSS users opted into MSAs||MC account removed from “Merchant accounts” and shown as “removed” in “Account history”|