The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on both retailers and brands. As they adapt to new realities the need to connect with customers is even more important and marketplaces are proving to be a key channel to do this cost-effectively.

With brands and retailers currently facing unprecedented times, many are now accelerating their marketplace strategies as a way to diversify and get in front of more customers quickly. With shipping delays and heightened demand for certain goods, even the most loyal customers are having to turn to different channels to get what they need, making it more important than ever that retailers expand their product assortment and have products available where consumers are searching for items in order to meet customer expectations.

Diversifying sales and distribution channels can help retailers continue to generate online revenue and help mitigate future risk. A great opportunity for retailers and brands to do this was announced earlier this week by Google. They will open Google Shopping to allow free listings before the end of April 2020 for the US market expanding globally by the end of 2020.

Additionally, Google is launching a new kind of partnership with PayPal that can accelerate the onboarding process to Google Shopping by linking accounts and reducing the time needed to get up and running with free product listings.

Google says this move is an attempt to help “struggling businesses to reconnect with consumers as many cannot afford to do so at scale.” This is welcome news for businesses that have been impacted by the pandemic, and an opportunity to help make up for the loss in sales that many retailers and brands have seen over the last two-three months.

“For retailers, this change means free exposure to millions of people who come to Google every day for their shopping needs. For shoppers, it means more products from more stores, discoverable through the Google Shopping tab. For advertisers, this means paid campaigns can now be augmented with free listings.”

How to Get Started with Free Google Shopping Listings

Google’s intent is to provide a boost to the online retail ecosystem—while some essential product categories such as consumables and home goods have seen a rise in sales due to the increase of home-bound shoppers needing products delivered, many other categories have seen significant dips particularly in light of the closing of physical retail stores. The free Google Shopping listing program is a great opportunity for brands and sellers to sustain or revive flagging sales without an added cost barrier, and is a great way to augment an existing ecommerce strategy, and as Google’s Bill Ready says: “lay the groundwork for a healthier retail ecosystem in the future.”


The listings will begin appearing on the Google Shopping tab in search results starting in the next couple of weeks. No action is needed for existing merchants to join the program beyond ensuring that your Google account is opted-in for “Surfaces on Google,” which is required to appear in the Google Shopping tab. New merchants can apply any time after the launch with a faster onboarding process to help get new listings added and live in the tab quickly. Please NOTE: This free product listing program only applies to Google Shopping, not their Google Ads program or other advertising products.


Rithum Can Help you Optimize Free Google Shopping Listings

Even with the new program, it’s important to have a “retail ready” catalog to take advantage of the potential increased traffic and conversion. Whether you’re an existing seller or a new seller looking to launch your products in a timely manner on Google Shopping, Rithum can help. Contact our experts to learn how you can get up and running with optimized free Google Shopping listings today.

Interested in learning more about this exciting opportunity and all your marketplace options? Register for our upcoming webinar: Unlock Inventory and Drive Ecommerce Sales Now here.