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Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 1
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So I have been using google merchant center for about 4 years now and I usually get a notification via email my products are about to expire but seems that's not the case. But even if I did, I would probally not read it now as I have too much going on at moment.


March 16th my items expired and right now (march 22nd) I didn't even know that until i logged on (something kind of gave me a nudge inside to check).

 

Anyways following questions I have since all items have now expired. Before, I would use content api to renew, but now its all via google sheets.

 

1). Do I renew this by fetch now on the sheets? and does google products expire normally every 30 days?

 

2). If I do google fetch automatically too weekly, will this solve the problem of having to manually fetch each sheet?

 

3). I was gonna do monthly, but if I do monthly automatic fetch does that mean that when it expires and it automatic fetch it will be another 24-48 hours to be in system?

 

4). This brings me to my question related to #3. If i do automatically renew, does this mean that it will restart the product upload and will have to repeat the 24-48hr wait process? Or will that slide.....

So basically I'm trying to renew and avoid any 24-48 hr wait process and keep the products alive on google whole time.

3 Expert replyverified_user

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

It is really annoying. I do this every 28 days for two clients who use Sheets and their products/prices/availability never change. 

 

You just need to set your self a reminder and do it before the 30 days is up. Otherwise, you'll have that wait process.

 

How often you fetch it won't make any difference. Google tends to think in terms of big business, and it figures no changes in 30 days indicates it isn't up-to-date.

 

 

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 3
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Didn't want to hear that RobSkelton Smiley Sad

But, it could be worse! So basically automatic fetching every day, week, month has no effect in renewal right? Then should I just pause the fetches (unless some sheets do lot of changes that is. But for most part its always same price/availability/description etc..)

 

You stated "How often you fetch it won't make any difference. Google tends to think in terms of big business, and it figures no changes in 30 days indicates it isn't up-to-date."

 

What do you mean by this in terms of big business.....

 

Anyways, So i have roughly 300k items and so far only used 22k items up on google sheets that are split on 25 sheets (for organization purpose)...

So I will have to click fetch each time manually for all 25 sheets for renewal per 28 days? (As mentioned I have 300k items so that will be more as i upload more product sheets on google.. So I think if that's the case, I might have to consolidate the sheets.

 

To summarize, fetch now per 28 days will be ok to renew without the 24-48hr waiting period .. And automating fetch now (daily, weekly or even monthly) does nothing for renewal.

Thanks for your reply

 

 

 

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 4
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So you have 300K products that never change price/availability?

 

And why are you using Google Sheets? Is your backend custom and there is no other option?

 

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 5
Top Contributor

Automatic or manual fetching has the same effect. It will extend the expire date by 30 days. It is best to always setup an automatic schedule to 1 a day so that it never expires.

 

However I have to agree with Rob, 300k and your using a spreadsheet, does not look very effective. Are you drop shipping?

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Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

[ Edited ]
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# 6
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the expiration/freshness policies have been in place for quite some time.

all items must be resubmitted at least monthly,
or immediately, when a critical change to the
website or physical on-hand inventory occurs.

a best-practice is to resubmit a feed at least one-week before
its default 30-day expiration -- to account for any processing
or related issues and the crawl of images and landing-pages.

 

all items expire every 30-days by default, unless resubmitted --

all expired items are automatically removed from the listings.

 

all items submitted must also be kept up-to-date with respect

to both the website and physical inventory details, at all times --

or is otherwise a policy violation.

only physical items, that are currently in the merchant's on-hand,
in-stock, physical inventory, should be submitted; however, google
does not require that all physical inventory items be submitted --
for example, only physical variants may be submitted, but not all
variants currently in stock are required to be submitted.

generally, only one, single, primary-feed should be registered and used
for all physical inventory being submitted -- for example, to avoid any
such coordination issues; a single feed can handle about 100,000 items.

as was indicated, scheduled-fetch and manual-fetch have identical outcomes.

as was indicated, for very large inventory -- typically over 100,000
in-stock inventory items -- a spreadsheet or similar feed is likely

not the best solution.

rather, some combination of inventory-feeds, a merchant's inventory
database, server-side feed-data, structured-data-updates, and either
server-side ftp or google's content-api-for-shopping -- in some direct
coordination with the merchant's warehouse inventory-system, website
content-management-system, and e-commerce-system -- is more typical.

otherwise, simply submitting only a subset of current
physical inventory -- such as best-sellers, or certain
product categories, or some items from each category,

etc, totaling about 50,000-100,000 inventory items,

with only one, single, primary-feed, may be prudent.

 

as was also indicated, drop-shipping and related supply-chains

are generally not allowed for shopping-ads -- and is grounds for

a policy-flag, or a more permanent suspension from the program,

at any time.

 

 

 

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 7
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Price doesn't change and availability because usually I work with manufactures and when they change I change it as well.   So using shopify, they had a content api google app that was working fine for me as I had to tinker with the data to get it working flawlessly, but lot of the shopify customers were getting frustrated and they pulled the plug on it and limited the item quantity to 10k (used to be no limit). My options of google sheets was only way as I have method of extracting the right data for what google needs.

 

So I guess that is what you mean by backend being custom and I can't really configure it to just let google see my shop and extract everything they need? If that's something possible for shopify platform I love to know and would be great.

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 8
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Ok so I guess I was bit confused when RobSkeleton wrote "How often you fetch it won't make any difference. Google tends to think in terms of big business, and it figures no changes in 30 days indicates it isn't up-to-date."

 

So if I "enable" the feed and do "daily" fetch then I don't have to renew by manually fetching? Does the 24-48 wating period applies in any time of doing as I just want it consistently on google shopping instead of that waiting period

Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

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# 9
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You wrote

rather, some combination of inventory-feeds, a merchant's inventory
database, server-side feed-data, structured-data-updates, and either
server-side ftp or google's content-api-for-shopping -- in some direct
coordination with the merchant's warehouse inventory-system, website
content-management-system, and e-commerce-system -- is more typical.

 

So lot of the experts on here as well is mentioning to me that over 100k items etc sheets is not best solution and I would love to move away from this as well but the google shopping api app from shopify platform I use discontinued and only limits to 10k items now ... Do you have any suggestion on how to go about this if shopify has lot of backend already all customized? I saw some third party apps as well able to upload all these products but it was around 300-400 a month. (before the shopify app was free, just people complained about too many errors and bug. But I was able to tinker with it so that it worked well, and didn't like they pulled the plug on it)

Re: Google merchant center Expiration and Fetch via google sheets

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 10
Top Contributor

first, thank you for the feedback.

 

all items must be resubmitted at least every 30-days,
by default, per google's policies -- regardless if any
inventory or website data changes, or not.

no changes to price or availability does not change the freshness policies.

by default, all items expire automatically, every 30-days.

one reason behind the 30-day default expiration is likely that google
figures no changes in 30-days indicates the data is not up-to-date --
regardless of the reason, the 30-day default freshness policy exists,
and has not changed in quite some time.

items will be removed from the auctions if not resubmitted,
and fully processed, before the indicated expiration-date.

a best-practice is to resubmit the data (feed) at least one week before
the item/feed is scheduled to expire, especially for large inventory,
to take into account any processing delays or any processing issues.

one issue with submitting daily, for very large inventory,
if too much data is within any one single feed, is that full

processing may not end, before items are resubmitted,

again, which makes proper monitoring rather difficult.


there is always a wait-period for processing, assignment of status, and

crawling of images and website landing-pages, for the items submitted;
generally, the more items submitted in a feed the longer the wait period.

that is one reason why, either a server-side solution,
or reducing the inventory submitted, is recommended
for very large inventory -- when using spreadsheets,
an inventory size of about 10,000 items, submitted,
in total, across all feeds, is rather reasonable.

regardless, to renew and avoid any 24-72 hour waiting period interfering
with proper processing and keep products alive on google the whole time,
one possibility to consider --
(a) temporary stop/pause any and all scheduled-fetches for all feeds;
(b) use the largest spreadsheet, and issue a "fetch-now", directly
within the merchant-center-account, to fetch the sheet/data-feed;
(c) wait to see how long all items take to fully process -- by inspecting
the feed-processing-tab, and the products-lists-tab, by clicking on the
item's title, and verifying the expired-in-days have been updated, and
by carefully inspecting the products-diagnostics-tab for crawl issues;
(d) take that full-processing time -- to calculate an efficient
scheduled-fetch, for all feeds, staggered over that time frame.

for example, if the largest feed takes about 72-hours to fully

process, then schedule a weekly update; if that feed takes

3-hours or so, to fully process, then schedule a daily update.

also, be certain to also stagger the day and time, to avoid overlap;
e.g., for four feeds, choose monday, wednesday, friday, sunday,
and 12am, 6am, 12pm, 6pm, for their scheduled-fetches.

weekly is usually best for very large inventory --
careful, daily, monitoring, is usually required,

if there are multiple feeds.

for very large inventory, scheduling a monthly fetch is not recommended --
processing-time will almost always exceed the expiration-date and items
will begin to be removed.

of course, the above will not work for price or inventory stock changes;
in that case, either the optional automatic-item-updates feature
should be enabled and fully functioning in both the account and
on the website, or the entire sheet/feed, that contains that item,
must be resubmitted (fetch-now) immediately, after the change --

or both -- to avoid a policy-flag.

if a scheduled-fetch cannot be used to properly
submit items with respect to the freshness policies,
then the inventory size submitted must be reduced,
further, or a server-side solution is likely required,
to avoid policy issues.

otherwise, the best likely course would be to directly contact shopify.

see also
https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/1219255
https://support.google.com/merchants/topic/6386199
https://support.google.com/merchants/topic/3404780
https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/188493
https://www.shopify.com/contact