As someone that has worked using Google Shopping for many years, for me, this is possibly the best change yet and a step in the right direction for a process that has caused much frustration in the past.
Keeping a feed updated can be challenging, especially if you are running a website with thousands of products.
Microdata can perform automatic updates to your feed by taking information directly from your website updating price and availability. This means accurate information, less chance for account suspension and prevented item disapprovals. Please see the following example taken from Google.
Example of Automatic Update taken from Google
In the image below, you can see when we update the price and availability of an item, using price information and a .txt data feed for this example. When you upload an item (green icon) with a price of $1, a Google Shopping user (blue icon) will see this price. If we find a price mismatch after your upload, we will update the price of the item automatically. In this example, we find a price of $2 on your website, which doesn’t match the price provided in your most recent data submission. From this point on, the user will see $2 as the price of the item. The next feed upload (time B) will overwrite this update and the user will now see a price of $3.
Microdata is a structured data markup schema that you can add to your existing web page. Google and other web platforms can use this metadata to extract information about your products directly from your website. You can implement microdata on your website by following the markup HTML available at schema.org and ensuring accessibility for Google’s crawler.
Price and availability appears to be just the start as there is clearly a lot of scope for micodata to be used in other areas of updating the shopping feed.
teclan are currently testing out the code with a view to rolling this out to our Digital Marketing clients over the next few months.