With the outbreak of COVID-19, the global economy is facing another major crisis. Many advertisers and marketers are thinking to make new strategies to survive their business through the global pandemic.

But Google has shared a helping hand towards the merchants by letting them allow to list products for free in the Google Shopping tab in search results. This also opens a new strategy for marketers focussing just on SEO and organic search, to add Google Products Ads in their toolkit. By the end of April, it has already started to take effect on the U.S. search engine results.

google free product listing

As we know, due to the panicky situation out most people are practising self-quarantine, leading to a huge influx of traffic on online shopping websites. People are shopping online more than ever and with Google’s latest update for merchants, you can grab a huge opportunity to save your business in the COVID-19 era.

Here what Google has to say:

“The retail sector has faced many threats over the years, which have only intensified during the coronavirus pandemic. In light of these challenges, we’re advancing our plans to make it free for merchants to sell on Google. With hundreds of millions of shopping searches on Google each day, we know that many retailers have the items people need in stock and ready to ship but are less discoverable online.”

How does Google Free Listings Will help?

This little change has created a win-win situation for everyone, I mean the retailers, advertisers, and shoppers. Let’s see how:

For Retailers

Free listings on Google will give the retailers free exposure to millions of people who search for products online every day.

For Shoppers

Shoppers will be catered with more options for the same product search in the Google Shopping Tab.

To be simple more listings mean more products which means more options.

For Advertisers

If you own an existing user of Merchant Center and Shopping ads you can simply augment your free listings.

Celebrate The New Partnership

Along with this colossal change Google has also announced a new partnership with Paypal. Google is knocking off this step to let the merchants link their accounts and speed up the onboarding process.

To add a cherry on top of the cake, Paypal is also joining hands with Google’s existing partners including various eCommerce platforms like Shopify, Bigcommerce, and WooCommerce.

Whether you are a small business owner or a big-time firm, Paypal’s partnership Google and its existing partners will make eCommerce more accessible.

Strategies That Retailers Can Adapt

Google has given retailers a huge opportunity to create a healthy retail ecosystem and provide a measure of relief. But this can only happen if you use this opportunity to its fullest potential.

So here are a few strategies that retailers can adapt to take full advantage of the update:

  1. Strategise Product Development And Customer Services

  2. The pandemic outbreak has changed everything for people. Their priorities are changing, their needs are changing. You need to understand that people are stuck in houses and are combating social distancing. Thus, your products should keep them engaged and deal with this together.

    To bring customers your products should resonate with their needs. The product development strategy should be in a manner that quenches the current needs of buyers. You can remove your current products that are no longer in demand and replace them with the more relevant ones.

    Also, your customer services should be more personalized and engaging. Make use of more live chats, phone calls, or emails to stay in close contact with your buyers virtually.

  3. Make Use Of Ecommerce Extensions

  4. Here’s another great news by Google for the small and medium-sized businesses:

    “We’re giving our SMB customers worldwide $340 million in ad credits, which can be used towards future ad spend, until the end of 2020 across our Google Ads platforms.”

    Google has taken this step to let the SMBs stay in touch with their customers in this challenging time. This means while maintaining the social distancing practice you need not to emotionally distance your customers.

    Thus, you can create special landing pages for your products based around COVID-19 and squeeze the maximum benefit from ad credits by boosting your products.

    You can take help of various extensions available with the eCommerce platforms of your choice to make your marketing efforts more effective. Extensions can let you efficiently market your products on Google Shopping, Google Search, YouTube, the Display Network, etc.

  5. Restructure Selling Strategies

  6. You need to restructure your current offers to make it relevant to the current situation. You can create COVID-19 themed offers, offer free shipping, and create special “stay home” product bundles.

    You can also partner with other businesses in order to work together and reach a broader customer base. Restructuring your selling strategies is the motivation behind letting you stay in business, and also show people that you’re with them. With your selling and marketing campaigns, you can convey the message to your audience that you understand the hardships that they are facing and willing to help them.

What Businesses Are Expected To Do

I’ve discussed with you what strategies you can undertake to if not increase then maintain your current customer pool. To take full advantage of Google’s free listing updates and Ads, this what businesses are expected to do:

  • Offer products that help people combat their hardships. People are locked down in houses and looking for products and services that can keep them physically and mentally engaged and beat boredom.
  • You can offer educational courses in your area of expertise to let people learn something new and upgrade their skills.
  • Offer easy money transaction methods. As almost everyone is working from home and are facing difficulties in accessing hard cash through banks, you can offer easy transition methods of money.
  • The unemployment rate has reached its all-time high and people are looking for methods to make money online. Provide them with relevant sources to prepare them for the future.

The list of expectations seems to be never-ending. After all, the motive of a buyer behind buying a product is that it provides a solution to a problem. Therefore as a business owner, your business is expected to develop and sell products that resonate with the current needs of the buyer.

Google has understood that the retail sector has been hit hard by the widespread of the novel coronavirus. As the physical stores have been shut people becoming more dependant on online retailers. Thus, in the limelight of the situation, Google has taken a huge step to lower the agony of the eCommerce store owners in the COVID-19 era.

Author's Bio: 

Abdul’s interest in digital marketing & changing Google algorithms helped him shape up his career as an SEO specialist at MakeWebBetter. His helpful inclination towards the marketers is clearly reflected through his regular updates on the latest news and technical stuff with an aim to provide solutions with ease.