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Google Product Category and Product Type attributes


How to set Google Product Category

You have four options for setting Google Product Category values in your feed. Here is a summary.

Option 1: Leave it blank and let Google auto-categorize
Google automatically categorizes your products if you leave google_product_category blank. Their system does a good job for common products, so this is a good option to consider.
Option 2: Set a default value for all items
You can configure a default value that applies to all items in your feed where no other google_product_category value is available. This option is typically used in addition to Option 3 or Option 4. Refer to the How to set a Default Value for Google Product Category section later in this article for specific instructions.
Option 3: Map to a field in your catalog
If you have google_product_category values in your product catalog already, you can map your Catalog field to the 'google_product_category' field in the feed from the Manage Feed > Define Fields page.
Option 4: Use our Categorization Service
For a one-time setup fee and small monthly fee, we can categorize your products for you by mapping each of your categories to a closely matching Google product category. See google_product_category Categorization Service for details.

How to set a Default Value for Google Product Category

Use the instructions below to add a default Google product category value for your data feed.

  1. Go to the Manage Feed > Define Fields page.
  2. Click Edit for the google_product_category field.
  3. Look up the appropriate category by going to Manage Feed > Taxonomy Search page (The official list is here: Google Product Taxonomy)
  4. Enter the category in the Default Value box without double-quotes, and click the Update button. You can only choose one category.
  5. Resubmit your data feed.

How to map a Catalog Field for Google Product Category

Your feed may be pre-configured to use an appropriate Catalog field from your store catalog. To change or add that setting, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the Manage Feed > Define Fields page.
  2. Click Edit for the google_product_category field.
  3. Enter the field name from your store catalog in the Field Name setting, and click the Update button.
  4. Resubmit your data feed.

Google Product Category Tips

The quotation marks around the category are optional, and we recommend leaving them out for clarity.

Google may accept categories with altered spacing, but our system is more strict and expects the spacing to be exactly like it is in Google's official taxonomy.

Incorrect Spacing:

Electronics>GPS >  Sport GPS

Correct Spacing:

Electronics > GPS > Sport GPS

Google changes the taxonomy from time to time, and you need to update your categories when they do that.

If you have missing or invalid categories, you can find out in the Google Validation report in your account.

If you have a large number of items, start out by specifying a top-level category, like Electronics or Home & Garden, just so the items can be listed. Later, you can go back and put in more detailed categories for better results.

Product Type

product_type is a recommended field and you can provide your own, merchant-specific category in this field. The feeds are pre-configured to put in your merchant category or path in this field.

product_type is a very important field for two reasons. First, it is one of the few fields that is used as a source of keywords for searching. Second, you can set up product groups by product_type in your Shopping Campaign to optimize your bids by category.

You have the option of overriding this pre-configured value with the value from any of the fields in your store catalog. You can also set a Default Value that will be used for any items without any other product type. You can configure this field by going to Manage Feed > Define Fields > Edit product_type.