Switch how you manage your Buy on Google returns (US only)

US only


When you set up your return configuration you’ll choose which method of return shipping label generation is best for you: merchant-managed returns or Google-facilitated returns. 

How it works

Merchant-managed returns

If you choose not to provide Google with your carrier account info, you’ll be responsible for providing return shipping labels for all return requests. 

When a customer decides to return a product, Google will let you know in your Merchant Center account and via daily summary emails. Then, you’ll be able to either provide a return shipping label directly in your Merchant Center account.

Google-facilitated returns

To have Google generate return labels automatically, you’ll need to link your supported common carrier for return shipping. Then, when a customer initiates a return, Google will generate return labels on your behalf and you’ll be billed directly by your carrier.

Regardless of which way you choose to manage your returns, if you want to manage your own returns for just a subset of their Buy on Google inventory, you may mark these products as “special processing returns” by creating a return rule.

  Requirements Works best if Not ideal if
Merchant-managed returns (Default)
  • Adhere to return label generation SLAs
  • Labels have to be uploaded to your Merchant Center account in PDF format
  • You expect low return volume
  • You'd like to use different return carriers accounts on a case by case basis
  • High return management cost
  • High liability of return management performance
Google-facilitated returns Link your existing account with supported carrier
  • Access via Google to automated return label generation of labels saves time 
  • Will save return management effort and hence time
  • Providing best customer experience
All of your products require special instructions to be shared with customers before return initiation


Merchant-managed returns (default)

Choose this option if you’d like to upload a label for every return request you receive. If you don’t provide a label within 2 business days, the customer may be issued a refund. Frequent defaults may impact your Retailer Standard rating.

Google-facilitated returns 

Choose this option if you want Google to automatically generate return labels for  your returns. You’ll share your existing carrier account details with Google, then when a customer decides to return a product, Google will automatically generate return labels for customers using your carrier account. 


Google will use the shipping dimensions, weight and zones you share for automatic return label generation. If you don't provide these, Google will use a default. For merchants selling in Buy on Google United States, the defaults for each product are mentioned below:

  • Shipping Weight: 5.0 lbs
  • Shipping Dimension: Height = 4”, Width = 12”, Length = 12”, 

Special processing returns

Keep in mind that if you want to manage returns for only some of the products you sell on Buy on Google and let Google generate return shipment labels for the rest, you’ll have the option to do so using the Special Processing Return Rule. Special processing returns, that are valid for both Google-facilitated and merchant-managed returns, also allow you to directly interact with your customer. Learn more about special return processing

Keep in mind

For both merchant-managed and Google-facilitated returns:

  • Prepaid return shipping labels in the shipment are not supported.
  • A packing slip will be auto generated by Google and sent to the customer (with the label).


To use Google’s integration with shipping carriers (currently USPS, FedEx and UPS are supported and more carriers will be added in the future) to automatically generate return labels from your carrier account, you'll need to link your carrier account into Merchant Center.  You can only add one carrier for return label generation.

Linking your USPS account requires you to additionally share your mailer ID apart from your account ID. If you need help finding your mailer ID, contact USPS.

Link your accounts

  1. Log in to your Merchant Center account.
  2. From the “Settings” menu, click Linked accounts.
  3. Click the Platforms tab.
  4. Click the plus button to choose a platform that you want to link to your Merchant Center account. 
  5. The carriers supported will be listed with the capability to “Create return shipping label”. Select the carrier of your choice.
  6. The next screen, enter your carrier account number, sometimes referred to as the shipper number.
    1. Note: Your carrier account number appears in your carrier invoice.
  7. Click Add carrier
  8. Check the “Status” column to see if your accounts have been successfully linked.

Remove a link

  1. Sign in to your Merchant Center account.
  2. From the “Settings” menu, click Linked accounts.
  3. Click the Platforms tab.
  4. In the "Actions" column, click Remove.

Related links


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