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In this help center, you can find content for both Merchant Center Next and the classic Merchant Center experience. Look for the logo at the top of each article to make sure you're using the article for the Merchant Center version that applies to you. 

Free listings for products

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If you're looking for information about free listings in the classic Merchant Center experience, click here.

Free listings are a great way to generate traffic to your online store and promote your business without having to pay for advertising.

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How it works

With a free listing, the products you sell can appear at no cost on Google Search, Google Maps, YouTube, the Shopping tab, Google Images, and Google Lens. Free listings for products helps your product pages appear in search results, not other pages like homepages, shipping and return policies, or product category pages.

In most cases, the Free listings feature is turned on by default for you, and you can view and change the status on the Free listings page in Merchant Center Next. Free listings apply for both online and in-store products.

If you're a Marketplace MCA, you can turn on free listings for all of your sub-accounts in the Free Listing tab. Any changes you make will have an impact on all your sub-accounts. However, if the setting is edited at the sub-account level, this setting is the one that takes priority over the one chosen in the Marketplace MCA.

Note: The status on the Free listings page controls permission to show products for free across Google, but doesn't guarantee that your products will be shown to customers. We rely on the data that you provide to us to match your products with what customers might be searching for.

Eligibility

Requirements

  • Follow our policies for showing products for free across Google.
  • Add your return policy information to your website to show information about returns next to your products. Your return policy may affect whether or not a customer decides to purchase a product from you.
    • We recommend adding your return policy in Merchant Center.
  • Set up “Shipping” settings or add shipping costs using the shipping [shipping] attribute to product data. This gives customers access to important information about shipping for the products they may want to purchase from you.

Note: You’re required to set up “Shipping” settings or add shipping costs using the shipping [shipping] attribute in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czechia, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Poland, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Recommendations

It’s important to keep your Merchant Center account up to date and provide high-quality information so that your customers have a positive experience. These can affect if your products show up for free on Google.

  • The most important factor of a free listing is creating high-quality content that your audience will find valuable. Create content that is informative, engaging, and relevant to your audience.
  • Use relevant keywords and phrases throughout your content so that it'll be more likely to show up in search results. Follow our SEO guidelines to improve the visibility of your website on Google and to provide a good customer experience.
  • If you work with a third-party platform to show, promote, or sell your products across Google, link your Merchant Center account with the third-party platform.
  • If applicable, link your Merchant Center account to your existing Business Profile.
  • Match your product data in Merchant Center with your online store to ensure customers view the same information, such as prices, across both.
Note: Your products aren’t guaranteed to show across Google, as we rely on the data you provide to us to match your products with what customers might be searching for.

Add your product details

New accounts

When you create a new Merchant Center account, you're opted in to free listings by default. View the section below about providing the required product attributes.

Existing accounts

If you already have an existing Merchant Center account with product data uploaded, you may already be showing products for free on Google. You can confirm by checking the Free listings page in Merchant Center:

  1. In your Merchant Center account, under the “Marketing method” section, click Free listings in the left navigation menu.
  2. Check your current status.

Partners

If your account was created through a partner, then your product data was added to your Merchant Center using the Content API. Any changes with your product data will need to be done through your partner portal or discussed with your partner.


Other ways your product details are used when showing your products for free on Google

Google may still show the following information across Google, even if you turn off a free listing:

  • Content from your online store: Products and their details that have been crawled on your online store can show up on Google. This can occur even if the information hasn’t been marked up using schema.org or added in Merchant Center. This is done to ensure that customers are able to view a wide variety of products from a broad group of retailers when they search for information on Google. You can control how your products appear and stop showing them at any time by implementing crawl and indexing controls.
  • Content from Merchant Center: Google may still use and display certain products and their details you add, for example, titles and images, as described in the Merchant Center terms of service.

Provide the required product attributes

The product details you add using these attributes is our foundation for showing your products for free on Google. You can reference the "Needs attention" tab on the "Products" page in Merchant Center to identify any issues with the product details you add. Learn more about Product data specification.

Note: If you’re using structured data markup on your online store, click into each attribute in the table below to find the corresponding schema.org attribute name. For troubleshooting, check the errors in Search Console to make sure you’ve added the markup correctly.

Most of the following attributes are required to show your products for free on Google:

Attribute Additional details
Id [id]

Required

For all products.
Title [title]

Required

For all products.
Link [link]

Required

For all products.
Image link [image_link]

Required

For all products.

Ensure that the image is large enough and doesn’t contain promotional content to avoid disapproval.

Price [price]

Required

For all products.

If you include specific prices for the price attribute, any price drops based on the running historical average of your product’s pricing may appear in your listings. Learn more about the price [price] attribute.

Description [description]

Required

For all products.
Availability [availability]

Required

For all products.
Condition [condition]

Required

For each used or refurbished product.
Brand [brand]

Required

For each product with a clearly associated brand or manufacturer.
Gtin [gtin]

Required

For all products with a GTIN assigned by the manufacturer.

Match your product information with the most relevant queries. Learn more about unique product identifiers.

Mpn [mpn]

Required

For all products without a GTIN.

Match your product information with the most relevant queries. Learn more about unique product identifiers.
Multipack [multipack]

Required

If your product is a multipack.

Indicate if your product consists of multiple, identical products grouped as one product (“10 pairs of white cotton socks”).

Bundle [is_bundle]

Required

If your product is a bundle.
Color [color]

Required

For Apparel & Accessories

Submit the primary color of your product. If your product has variations by color, use the Item group ID [item_group_id] attribute to submit each of your variants by color.
Size [size]

Required

For Apparel & Accessories

Specify the standardized size of your product. If your product has variations by size, use the Item group ID [item_group_id] attribute to submit each of your variants by size.
Age group [age_group]

Required

For Apparel & Accessories

Indicate which demographic your product is designed for. This attribute is used in combination with the gender [gender] attribute to help ensure customers view the correct size information.
Gender [gender]

Required

For Apparel & Accessories

Specify which gender your product is designed for, or submit “unisex” if no gender is specified. We use gender in combination with size [size] and age group [age_group] attributes to standardize sizing and departments that are shown to customers (for example, a t-shirt with “male” and “kids” indicated for the gender and age group could be used to display a “boys t-shirt”).
Item group ID [item_group_id]

Required

For product variants.

Use this attribute to group product variants together in your data.

Shipping [shipping]

Required

For overriding your account shipping settings in Merchant Center.

Learn how to Manage your shipping settings.
Tax [tax]

Required

For overriding your account tax settings in Merchant Center.
Pattern [pattern]

Recommended only for Apparel & Accessories

Use this to describe the pattern or graphic print on your product. If your product has variations by pattern, use the item group ID attribute to submit each of your variants by pattern.

Material [material]

Recommended only for Apparel & Accessories

Indicate the primary materials used in your product, as customers often search for products by material (for example, “leather jackets”).

Additional image link [additional_image_link]

Recommended

Provide up to 10 additional images per product to help customers see different views of your product, in addition to the required image link [image_link] attribute.
Size type [size_type]

Size system [size_system]

Recommended only for Apparel & Accessories

Further specify the standardized size of your product in addition to size [size].
Link in Google Search Index [canonical_link] Recommended for all products
Help Google match your product data with user queries by associating your products with the correct URL in Google’s Search index. If not used, the URL provided in the link [link] or mobile link [mobile_link] feed attribute may be indexed.

Track your results

It's important to track the results of your free listing efforts so that you can check what works and what doesn't. You can do this easily on the Performance page in Merchant Center by filtering results for free listings. Learn how you can track your performance in Merchant Center.

Marketing methods where free listings appear

Marketing methods (previously known as Destinations) refer to how and where your products are shown on Google to potential customers. 

If your products are eligible for free listings, they may appear in the following places across Google.

The Shopping tab (shopping.google.com)

Your free listings can appear on the Shopping tab, offering visual experiences for customers who are searching for products like yours. Customers are directed to your online site to complete the purchase flow.

Note: The Shopping tab is located at google.com/shopping. Shopping ads will continue to appear in ad slots on the Shopping tab.
  • The Shopping tab is available on mobile and desktop in all countries where free listings are live on the Shopping tab.
  • Your in-store products may appear in free local listings on the Shopping tab if you’ve opted in. Free local listings let customers know that the product they’re searching for is available at your nearby retail store. Your free local listing could include store hours, directions, phone number, product price, product availability, and approximate distance from the customer. The Shopping tab is available in most countries where the Shopping tab is live.

An example free listing for Google Phones on Google Shopping.

Google Search (google.com)

Rich results

Rich results can show alongside a search result when customers come to Google Search to find information about products, retailers, and brands. It appears as a few lines of text with product information (price, availability, product reviews) to provide customers with more useful information.

  • Available on mobile and desktop globally.

An ad example of rich snippets in web results on mobile and desktop.

Popular Products (apparel and accessories)

When customers use Google Search to shop for apparel and accessories, they often want to view more visual results. Your popular products in the Apparel & Accessories category can be eligible to show in more visual listings, such as a product list carousel that matches the category and is relevant to the user’s query. Customers can explore products offered by many brands and retailers, with links to retailer and brand sites to learn more.

  • Available on mobile in the US only.

An example of baseball hats, as free listings, in the Popular Products section.

Shopping Knowledge Panel

The Shopping Knowledge Panel is a search box that organizes information for a specific product. Shopping Knowledge Panel includes product details, offers from retailers who sell the product, and product reviews. If your product data feed includes the product being searched, your product may be eligible to appear in Shopping Knowledge Panel experience.

  • Available on mobile and desktop in the US, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Colombia, Argentina, India, Chile, Australia, and South Africa.
Note: Provide strong product identifiers (GTIN, MPN+Brand) for your products to be added correctly into the knowledge panel.

An animated GIF demonstrating a free listing for Tea Kettles on the Shopping Knowledge Panel.

Google Images (images.google.com)

When customers look for products and brands on Google Images, they may view  images with a “Product” label. Google Images signals that the product in the image can be purchased. Customers will view  rich product snippets (including price, availability, ratings, and brand) under the image after they interact with it.

  • Available on mobile and desktop globally.

An example free listing of nest thermostats on Google Images.

  • Google Lens feature: Customers can also tap on the lens icon within an image to view  a list of similar products. These product results can also contain rich product snippets (like availability) and a “Product” label to signify the product can be purchased. Google Lens is available on mobile and desktop globally.

An example product image demonstrating the Google Lens feature for free listings on Google Images.

YouTube (youtube.com)

When customers are watching a video on YouTube, they may view a list of products that can be purchased directly next to the video. Additionally, if a customer searches for a specific retail product in YouTube they may view matching products in their YouTube search results. If your product data includes the product being viewed or searched, your products may be eligible to appear in these formats. Learn more about Shopping on YouTube.

  • Available on mobile and desktop in limited countries as a free listing with strong trust signals.

An example free listing for Google Phones displayed on YouTube.

Related links

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