A guide to Buy on Google

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Customers expect commerce to be effortless — they shop where they choose to on any device.

That means for merchants and retailers to capture every selling opportunity, you need to be where your customers are. You must reduce friction to meet your customer’s demands of a convenient buying journey — and that’s where Buy on Google enters the picture.

Google continues to evolve in an effort to help merchants keep up with the demands of consumers. Meet your customers where they’re asking questions, browsing, and shopping with Buy on Google (BoG). 

With Buy on Google, online merchants can choose the products they want to sell and expand their customer base to extend the reach of those products. Using BoG, Merchants can reduce barriers to conversion by enabling shoppers to purchase the products they’re searching for directly on Google. 

Linnworks now integrates with Buy on Google to help merchants increase sales, reach new audiences, and extend the reach of existing product lines, managed seamlessly alongside other selling channels in Linnworks.

Watch on demand: Expanding your multichannel and marketplace strategy with Linnworks & Buy on Google.

What is Buy on Google?

Buy on Google is a commission-free and budget-friendly checkout experience that allows shoppers to purchase products directly from retailers on Google.

Merchants list and describe the products they sell. Return policies, shipping services, and payment details are automated and set up in the Google Merchant Center ahead of time. Then, as shoppers find products while searching Google, they can conveniently checkout as they browse by clicking the Google shopping cart and pay using the payment information they’ve stored on Google — without ever leaving the platform. 

The benefits of Buy on Google

Consumers go to Google when searching for a product. Incorporating Buy on Google into your selling strategy can help you reach a broader audience where customers are already spending their time searching for products, reducing barriers to conversion. As Buy on Google is commission-free and budget-friendly, testing the products you want to sell is a low-risk way to determine if adding BoG to your selling strategy is profitable for your brand.

In addition, you have complete control over what you sell on Buy on Google. This customization allows you to determine which products you want to list. Google also provides merchants with insights detailing product competitiveness against other retailers, which can help you improve your listings for each specific product to sell more. 

For many companies, Buy on Google is the data-driven, low-risk solution for getting higher product visibility and maximizing profit. If you’re looking for another growth opportunity for your brand, keep reading to understand more about navigating BoG as a selling channel and how to make the most of your performance.

Google offers a variety of listing types for products. To understand why BoG may be a good option for your business, it’s vital to understand each of the listings Google offers. 

Free Listings: Free inventory listings that organically redirect customers to your website based on their search efforts through Google Lens, Image, Shopping (for enhanced listings only), and Search.

Shopping Ads: Paid ads that redirect shoppers to your website based on your advertising campaigns. 

Buy on Google: List and sell products directly on Google. With BoG, customers can instantly purchase the products listed by your brand without being redirected to another website. Products are available across Google on Google Lens, Image, Shopping, and Search. BoG also offers the option to choose your third-party inventory management and payment providers. 

How to get started with Buy on Google

According to this onboarding guide from Google, there are a few steps you need to take to get started selling with BoG, but before you begin, you need to set up a Google Merchant Center account. (As a note, to do this, you need a Google account.) You can learn how to set up your Merchant Center account here

After you set up a Merchant Center account, it’s time to get started with BoG.

1. Add your business information and customer service email address

  • Sign in to your Merchant Center account
  • Click on the tools icon, followed by the settings menu gear icon. Then select “Business Information.”
  • Click “About your business” and enter the address where your business is registered.
  • After that, beneath “Tools” under the same tool icon, select “Buy on Google setup.”
  • Locate “Program settings” and enter your customer service contact email.

2. Add your products

Google offers an in-depth guide for adding products to BoG. However, before you get started, ensure that you have the specific product information required by BoG highlighted below. 

  • Price and availability: This includes product limits, stock availability, and any additional fees associated with your product (such as government-imposed recycling fees or copyright fees). 
  • Detailed product descriptions: This includes product warnings, energy labels, and any other required regulatory information.
  • Returns: Any signature on delivery policy for particular items.

3. Set up your shipping settings

BoG uses the shipping service listed in your Merchant Center Account. Follow the instructions below to set up your Merchant Center shipping settings (and, in turn, your BoG shipping.) 

  • Sign into your Merchant Center account.
  • Click the tools gear icon, then select “Shipping and returns” under “Tools“.
  • Next, from the “Shipping services” tab, click the “plus” button to create a shipping service.

4. Create a customer return policy.

4.1. Sign in to your Merchant Center account.

4.2. Click the tools gear icon, then select “Shipping and returns” under “Tools.” 

4.3. Click the “Return policies” tab.

4.4. Click the “plus” button to create your return policy. 

4.5. Enter your policy settings, reason for return fees, and seasonal overrides.

5. Link your payment service provider.

5.1. Sign in to your Merchant Center account.

5.2. Click “Payments” on the navigation panel.

5.3 Under “Configuration,” enter your business information.

5.4 Click the Payment accounts tab, and then click “Add payment method.”

5.5. Enter the details for your chosen payment method

You also have the option to:

  • Add your branding assets
  • Establish your user roles
  • Provide promotion information

Maximize Visibility and Sell More

According to Google, there are several adjustments you can make to your BoG channel to increase product sales by enhancing visibility.

1. Maintain Accurate Product Listings: 

  • Make sure that all of your product listings are active and approved. Doing this maximizes the number of products your customers can see (and in return purchase). 
  • Regularly check your BoG diagnostics to find (and resolve) any product issues such as active, expired, or pending listings.

2. Improve Your Product Feed:

  • Provide detailed product data to improve visibility. (For example, if you’re selling pre-made table centerpieces for weddings, including the color and sizes in the product description will help boost visibility.) 
  • Use only high-quality images (and alternate images).
  • Display any product variants. 

3. Update Your Shipping and Price Settings:

  • Consider offering free shipping. In fact, the Google Shopping tab has a highly visible badge for brands that offer fast delivery or free shipping. 
  • Let your customers know estimated shipping and delivery times before they hit the “buy” button. According to recent research on the effortless economy, 62% of consumers expect clear and transparent communication throughout the shipping and delivery process (and prioritize buying from a merchant who provides this information).
  • Allow Google to calculate custom delivery estimates automatically.
  • Set automated pricing rules that allow Google to make price adjustments to match your competition automatically. 

4. Offer Promotions:

Set up promotions to increase sales and visibility. You can do this in your Merchant Center account under the “Marketing” tab. Below are some examples of promotions you can offer your customers to help guide you:

  • Amount Off
  • Percent Off
  • Free Gift
  • Free Shipping 

5. Offer Customer Reviews

Reviews help your customers to see the quality of your brand and adding them on BoG free. In addition to providing your customers with valuable information, adding reviews also allows Google to collect insights on your performance. 

Metrics for success

Knowing how your products and brand are performing is essential to ecommerce success. Tracking metrics is one way to determine what you’re doing correctly, what products are selling the most, and what needs work. 

BoG offers reports and segmented data that can help you monitor your operations. Analytics that track your sales and orders, operations, and returns will help you monitor your performance and get the most of your BoG experience. 

Get started with Buy on Google and Linnworks

Now that you understand the basics of BoG, it’s time to get started. Learn how our Buy on Google integration can help you reach more shoppers and create seamless customer experiences.