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Local legal requirements and safety standards

As a merchant, you are always responsible for ensuring that you comply with all applicable laws and regulations, in addition to Google’s Shopping policies. The guidelines below are intended to help highlight some areas where we’ve seen merchants run afoul of legal requirements in the past. However, this is not an exhaustive list of legal issues you may need to consider, and you must do your own research regarding appropriate promotional practices for the place where your business operates, as well as for any other places where your listings are showing.

In cases where you are promoting products that appear to violate local laws or regulations, we may notify you that your listings appear to violate legal requirements and are therefore not serving. We generally err on the side of caution in applying this policy because we don’t want to allow content of questionable legality.

As with all violations of our Shopping policies, when we find content that violates these requirements, we may block it from appearing, and in cases of repeated or egregious violations, we may ban you from promoting products with us.

See below for some examples of areas where promotions may be in violation of local legal requirements:

  • Regulated products: A variety of restrictions may apply to your product depending on where in the world you promote or sell it. You should make sure you understand any restrictions that apply to the products you are promoting. Some examples include the following:
    • Infant food products in India
    • Radar detection products in France, Belgium, or Germany
    • Scientology in Germany or France
    • Gender determination in India
    • Information products with no age rating in Russia. Refer to the 'title' attribute in the feed specification for specific details on how to comply with this requirement.
  • Recalled products: Google may disapprove items that have been subject to recall by the manufacturer or these government agencies:
    • U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)
    • Rapid Alert System for non-food dangerous products (RAPEX)
    • Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

Safety standards restrictions

In addition to restricting regulated and recalled products, we also ban or limit certain kinds of products that might pose an unreasonable risk to health, safety, or property. For example, we have safety restrictions around the sale of hazardous materials and the transportation of live animals. We may disapprove items that violate health and safety standards or other regulatory standards.

What you can do

Here's more detail about each violation and what you can do if your item is disapproved or your Merchant Center account is warned or suspended:

Regulated and recalled products

Item disapproval

Items that don't comply with this policy may be disapproved. When an item is disapproved, it won't be eligible to serve on Google Shopping. If the item doesn't comply with Google Shopping policies, it should be removed from your product data.

In some instances, you’ll see the option to request a review of an item that has been disapproved for policy violations. If you believe that your item was incorrectly disapproved and would like to request a manual review, click "Why is this item disapproved" from the individual item page in the Products tab to initiate a review. Learn more about item disapprovals for policy violations and requesting a review.

Account disapproval

For most violations, we'll send you a warning email detailing the policy violation and give you 7 calendar days to update your product data.

  1. Read the policy above to see examples of local laws that you need to follow in order to run ads in those locations. Note that the list above is not exhaustive, so we urge you to do your own research on advertising practices for the places where your business operates and where your ads are showing. Here are some common areas to research:

    • Business or product registration: If required for your location, make sure that your business or product is registered with a local authority in order to be eligible to advertise. See some examples above of registration requirements that you need to know and follow.
    • Regulated products & services: Find out about any restrictions that may apply to your products or services depending on where in the world you promote or sell them. You can see some examples above of restrictions that you need to know and follow.

    You can either target a different location or remove the violating items from your product data.

  2. Target a different location. If your product data meets the basic policy requirements but not those for the countries that your campaign targets, you can choose to edit your location targeting to run your ads somewhere else where they do meet our requirements. Once you target your campaign only to acceptable locations, please request a review of your disapproved products, and we'll check if they can start running.
  3. Remove the violating items from your product data. You’ll receive an email with details about the violation, including examples from your product data. If you have additional items in your data that violate the same policy but aren't included in the email, you'll need to remove those too.
  4. Update your product data in Merchant Center.

    • If you created a schedule for automatic uploads, update your product data manually or wait for your product data to be automatically updated before requesting a review.
    • Product data that you’ve uploaded as a test won’t go live and isn’t considered during account reviews.
  5. Request a review of your account.
    • If your account is still within the warning period, it will automatically be reviewed again at the end of the warning period. Once the violating items are removed, you don't need to request an account review or take any additional action.
    • If your account is suspended, you’ll need to request an account review.

Most accounts are reviewed within 3 business days, but some can take longer if they need a more complex review. If we find that you've removed the violating items from your product data, we’ll remove the warning, or, in the case of account suspension, we'll approve your account to start running.

Safety standards restrictions

Item disapproval

Items that don't comply with this policy may be disapproved. When an item is disapproved, it won't be eligible to serve on Google Shopping. If the item doesn't comply with Google Shopping policies, it should be removed from your product data.

In some instances, you’ll see the option to request a review of an item that has been disapproved for policy violations. If you believe that your item was incorrectly disapproved and would like to request a manual review, click "Why is this item disapproved" from the individual item page in the Products tab to initiate a review. Learn more about item disapprovals for policy violations and requesting a review.

Account disapproval

For most violations, we'll send you a warning email detailing the policy violation and give you 7 calendar days to update your product data.

  1. Read the policy above to learn what we don't allow. Here are some examples:
    • Hazardous material: Make sure your product data doesn’t contain any of the examples listed in the policy above, including hazardous material and products that violate health & safety standards or other regulatory standards.
    • Live animals: Make sure your product data doesn’t contain any of the examples listed in the policy above, including live animals or transportation of live animals.
  2. Remove the violating items from your product data. You’ll receive an email with details about the violation, including examples from your product data. If you have additional items in your data that violate the same policy but aren't included in the email, you'll need to remove those too.
  3. Update your product data in Merchant Center.

    • If you created a schedule for automatic uploads, update your product data manually or wait for your product data to be automatically updated before requesting a review.
    • Product data that you’ve uploaded as a test won’t go live and isn’t considered during account reviews.
  4. Request a review of your account.
    • If your account is still within the warning period, it will automatically be reviewed again at the end of the warning period. Once the violating items are removed, you don't need to request an account review or take any additional action.
    • If your account is suspended, you’ll need to request an account review.

Most accounts are reviewed within 3 business days, but some can take longer if they need a more complex review. If we find that you've removed the violating items from your product data, we’ll remove the warning, or, in the case of account suspension, we'll approve your account to start running.

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