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In this Help Centre, 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 that you're using the article for the Merchant Center version that applies to you. 

Google product category [google_product_category]

A custom icon for Merchant Center Classic and Merchant Center Next.

All products are automatically assigned a product category from Google's continuously evolving product taxonomy. Providing high-quality, on-topic titles and descriptions, as well as accurate pricing, brand and GTIN information, will help make sure that your products are correctly categorised.

The Google product category [google_product_category] attribute can be used to override Google's automatic categorisation in specific cases.

In this article


When to use

Optional Optional for each product

Google will only accept a product category override in the following cases:

  1. Calculation of US taxes. For products sold in the US, you can override Google's automatic categorisation to make sure that the correct US tax rate is applied to your product.
  2. Enforcement of category-specific attribute requirements. Some product categories (such as Clothing & Accessories, Mobile Phones or Software) impose additional required fields. If Google incorrectly assigns your product to one of these categories, use this attribute to override the categorisation and remove the category-specific requirements.
  3. Targeting of Google Ads campaigns. If you've defined any of your ad campaigns based on Google's product categories, you can use this attribute to reassign products within your campaign structure.
  4. Alcohol. Alcoholic beverages must be categorised correctly. If the category of your product is incorrectly assigned, you can use the Google product category [google_product_category] attribute to override it and ensure that your product remains compliant. Learn more about our alcoholic beverages policy.

Format

Follow these formatting guidelines to make sure that Google understands the data that you're submitting.

Learn how to submit attributes and attribute values.

Supported values
  • Predefined Google product category: the ID or the full path of the product category. You may submit either the ID or the full path, but not both.
  • Download a list of all Google product categories:

To prevent garbled text in the .txt version: change your browser encoding to Unicode UTF-8.

  • To download this list in another language, you can select that language from the menu at the bottom of this page.
Limit 1 category per product
Repeated field No
File format Example entry
Text feeds

2271
or
Clothing & Accessories > Clothing > Dresses

XML feeds <g:google_product_category>2271</g:google_product_category>
or
<g:google_product_category>Clothing &amp; Accessories &gt; Clothing &gt; Dresses</g:google_product_category>

To format your data for Content API, see the Content API for Shopping resource.

Note: To ensure that this product data attribute is recognised by our system correctly, remember to submit your data feed file in a format that we support.

 

Minimum requirements

These are the requirements that you'll need to meet to show your product. If you don't follow these requirements, we'll disapprove your product and let you know in your Merchant Center account.

  • Use only a predefined Google product category. You can choose to submit either the ID or the full path of the product category, but not both. If no category matches the product, or if you want to submit your own product category, use the product type [product_type] attribute instead
  • If the taxonomy of product codes is not available in your language, use the English values or numeric ID.

Best practices

These best practices can help you to go beyond the basic requirements to optimise your product data for performance.

  • Use the one category that best describes your product. Choose the category based on your product's main function. For example, even though an MP3 player might have other functions, like a clock, its main function is as an MP3 player. So you would use the MP3 player category: Electronics > Audio > Audio Players & Recorders > MP3 Players (ID: 233)
  • Use the most specific category possible. For example, for an MP3 player charger, use the MP3 player accessories category: Electronics > Audio > Audio Accessories > MP3 Player Accessories (ID: 232). Don't just use: Electronics (ID: 222)
  • Use the latest categories. In Google Ads, bidding on Shopping campaigns is based on the latest categories. While you can submit any version of the categories published after August 2011, we'll translate these to the latest version. So if you use out-of-date categories, what you submit might not match what you see.

Additional guidelines

Review each section closely to determine whether the requirements apply to your country or product. If you don't follow requirements that apply to you, we'll disapprove your product and let you know in your Merchant Center account.

Products sold on Google
In the United States, Google will use any Google product category [google_product_category] values that you supply in your feed to help determine the tax rate for products you sell directly on Google in applicable states.
Shopping ads campaigns

In Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States, you can use the Google product category (displayed as 'Category') to help organise your product groups in your Shopping ads campaigns. For all other countries, you can only use the product type [product_type] attribute to help organise your product groups for bidding in your Shopping campaign.

Alcoholic beverages
  • Make sure that your product meets the alcoholic beverages policy.
  • Use the following Google product categories when submitting alcohol-related products:
    • Food, Beverages & Tobacco > Beverages > Alcoholic Beverages (ID: 499676) or any of its subcategories
    • Arts & Entertainment > Hobbies & Creative Arts > Homebrewing & Winemaking Supplies (ID: 3577) or any of its subcategories
Merchant-defined bundles
  • Use the Google product category that's most appropriate for your bundle of different products. If the bundle contains a main product, use the category of the main product. For example, for a digital camera bundled with a bag, use: Cameras and Optics > Cameras > Digital Cameras (ID: 152)
Mobile phones or tablets with a contract or instalment plans
  • Use the following Google product categories to let us know when you're submitting a mobile phone or tablet with a contract or an instalment plan:
    • Electronics > Communications > Telephony > Mobile Phones (ID: 267)
    • Electronics > Computers > Tablet Computers (ID: 4745)
  • For mobile phones sold with a contract, you may set the price [price] attribute to 0. If you submit a price of 0, you'll need to set the Google product category [google_product_category] attribute to: Electronics > Communications > Telephony > Mobile Phones (ID: 267).
Gift cards
  • Use the following Google product category to let us know when you're submitting a gift card:
    • Arts & Entertainment > Party & Celebration > Gift Giving > Gift Cards & Certificates (ID: 53)
Software subscriptions
  • Use the Software > Computer Software (ID: 313) category to let us know when you're submitting a software subscription, or use one of its subcategories. For example:
    • Software > Computer Software > Antivirus & Security Software (ID: 5299)

Examples

Clothing products

An illustration of a woman wearing a black dress

Product data for a black skater dress
Attribute Value

Title [title]

Skater dress – Black

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories > Clothing > Dresses

Google Malibu Sunglasses

Product data for a pair of brown Google Malibu sunglasses
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google Malibu sunglasses – Brown

Google product category

[google_product_category]

178
Coats and jackets

This illustration shows a Google branded men's zip-up jacket.

Product data for Google men's zip-up jacket
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google men's Performance full zip jacket – Black

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories > Clothing > Outerwear > Coats & Jackets

This illustration shows a Google branded performance pullover.

Product data for a Google performance sweatshirt
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google men's performance 1/4 zip sweatshirt – Heather/black

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories > Clothing > Outerwear

This illustration shows a Google branded hoodie.

Product data for a Google hoodie
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google tri-blend hoodie – Grey

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories > Clothing
Rings and jewellery

This illustration shows a gold wedding band.

Product data for a white gold wedding band
Attribute Value
Title [title] White gold wedding band – 14 C – 3 mm

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories> Jewellery > Rings
Colour [color] white gold
Material [material] white gold

This illustration shows a platinum-plated engagement ring.

Product data for a platinum-plated engagement ring
Attribute Value
Title [title] Round platinum-plated classic engagement ring

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories > Jewellery
Colour [color] silver
Material [material] platinum

This illustration shows a quartz multi-finger ring.

Product data for a quartz multi-finger ring
Attribute Value
Title [title] Silver quartz multi-finger ring

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Clothing & Accessories
Colour [color] silver
Material [material] silver/quartz
Mobile phones

An illustration with 3 different colors of one mobile phone

Product data for a Google Pixel 3
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google Pixel 3 – 32 GB – Midnight Blue – with contract

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Electronics > Communications > Telephony > Mobile phones
GTIN [gtin] 00723755006386
Brand [brand] Google
Software subscription

This illustration represents Google security software basic edition.

Product data for Google security software basic edition
Attribute Value
Title [title] Google Security Software Basic Edition (1-year subscription)
Price [price] 29.90 GBP

Google product category

[google_product_category]

Software > Computer Software > Antivirus & Security Software
Brand [brand] Google
GTIN [gtin] 1234567890123
Delivery [shipping] 0.00 GBP
Image link [image_link] https://www.example.com/logo.jpg

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