Promotions feed formatting and attributes

This article provides answers to common questions about creating, submitting, and updating your promotions feed.

Your promotions feed tells Google which promotions to distribute on your Shopping ads on Google.com and Google Shopping.

What fields of the promotions feed (feed attributes) are required?

The following feed attributes are required:
  • promotion_id
  • product_applicability
  • offer_type
  • long_title
  • promotion_effective_dates
  • redemption_channel

Visit our promotions feed specification article for more details and guidelines.

Why am I getting a "server error" message when I'm uploading my promotions feed?

There are 2 main reasons for “server error” messages:

  1. The promotion_effective_date attribute value is incorrect. For detailed information about the format of promotion start and end times, visit the promotions feed specification article.
  2. The feed template is outdated. Use the current feed template.

How do I create a promotion?

Create a promotion with the promotion builder in the Promotions dashboard of your Merchant Center or with a promotions feed. For more information, see how to create and submit promotions. Your promotions feed must follow the Promotions feed specification, Editorial requirements, and Program policies.

How do I change a promotion?

Promotions that have not yet been approved can be edited in promotion builder or by uploading an updated promotions feed. Once a promotion has been approved, it is still possible to edit certain information using promotion builder. This article explains how to edit a promotion or change promotion status.

How do I add a budget and/or order limit to a promotion?

Limits and budgets allow you to limit the amount you want to spend on a promotion and prevent a promotion from being applied too many times. Adding a limit and a budget to your promotions is optional. Learn more about setting promotion limits and budgets.

How does Google use the attributes in the feed?

Some attributes, like the generic_redemption_code, are directly reflected in the display of your promotion. Other attributes work in the background to determine where your promotion should be displayed, like the promotion_effective_dates and product_applicability attributes. When you create and submit a feed, include the required attributes, plus any conditional attributes that apply to your promotions. See Promotions feed specifications for the specific functions of each attribute.

Can I include multiple promotions for the same product in my products feed?

Yes, you may submit multiple promotions for each product in your products feed. Submit the values separated by commas in a tab-delimited file or as unique rows within your XML file. See examples in the table below:

Feed type Instructions Example
.txt To add multiple promotion_id's to an item, submit the values separated by commas in the promotion_id column. See example. Replace "PROMO1," "PROMO2," and "PROMO3" with the actual promotion_id's. PROMO1,PROMO2,PROMO3
XML To add multiple promotion_id's to an item, insert multiple lines. See example. Replace "PROMO1" and "PROMO2" with the actual promotion_id's. <g:promotion_id>PROMO1</g:promotion_id>
<g:promotion_id>PROMO2</g:promotion_id>
API To add multiple promotion_id's to an item, insert multiple lines. See example. Replace "PROMO1" and "PROMO2" with the actual promotion_id's. <sc:attribute name="promotion_id">PROMO1</sc:attribute>
<sc:attribute name="promotion_id">PROMO2</sc:attribute>

How many promotions are displayed at one time?

Up to 10 promotion_ids can be mapped to one item in the products feed.
Shopping ads show up to 5 promotions per item. The order the promotions appear are organized by product_applicability: promotions with SPECIFIC_PRODUCTS product_applicability are prioritized before promotions with ALL_PRODUCTS product_applicability.
Google.com will only show one promotion, also prioritized by product_applicability.

Can I reuse a promotion_id?

If a promotion was rejected during policy review and not stopped, you can reuse the promotion_id. If the promotion is already approved for policy or is stopped, you can’t reuse the promotion_id.

When do I need to add a promotion_id to the products feed?

If the promotion applies to SPECIFIC_PRODUCTS, add the promotion_id to the promotion_id column in the products feed for each product to which the promotion applies. The promotion will be rejected if the promotion_id is not mapped in the products feed.
What is the difference between the promotion_effective_dates and promotion_display_dates attributes and why is it beneficial to use both?
  • promotion_display_dates: when the promotion is available to the public
  • promotion_effective_dates: when the promotion can be tested on your website

Use both attributes to allow your promotion to go through validation review in advance of its public display date.

Note: This is only possible when uploading your promotion using a promotions feed. The promotion_effective_dates attribute is not available when using promotion builder.

To use this method, specify a start time for the promotion_effective_dates attribute that’s earlier than the promotion_display_dates attribute. Google will start the test process on the date you specify in your promotion_effective_dates. The end date of promotion_effective_dates should match the end date of the promotion_display_dates. If your promotion is approved, it will go live when the promotion_display_dates start time begins.

Make sure your promotion can be tested and works on your website as described.

Was this helpful?
How can we improve it?