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Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi there. We trade branded pc hardware and mobile phone accessories. All our goods are authentic, purchased through official/licensed distribution channels and we have a working relationship with the brands we carry, so this is of great surprise to us. 

 

The suspension notification occurred on Thursday, we contacted google 10 mins after receiving the email but we didn't even find out what it was for until Monday as we had different people in different departments stating different facts. The first guy said counterfeit issue, the second said feed issues, the third said something else etc. We have no idea how this has occurred, whether it be coming from a customer, brand or competitor.

 

We have supplied all our supplier invoices to google (all stock purchased through licensed distribution or from the brand directly so no qualms about authenticity). The problem we're facing is that every time we speak to google (at least once a day) they just say it can take another 24-72h working hours, and we are losing around £3000 / day in revenue and could go insolvent, have to lay off our staff etc.

 

We have tried everything we can think of but I think we have exhausted every method of approach. Does anyone have any ideas? 

3 Expert replyverified_user
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Accepted Solutions
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by MosheTLV (Top Contributor)
May 2017

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

counterfeit-goods, misrepresentation, is a rather serious policy flag and
generally relates to both how items are represented and supply-chains
of all items submitted or on the website -- if the brand details, how that
product and brand is represented, and their supply-chain details, do not
meet all google-shopping-ad policies, or cannot be verified by someone
at google then, the flag is usually permanent and nothing can be done.

 

of course, one disapproval or suspension may be triggered by multiple issues.

 

however, forum-members cannot look into any account or submitted data --
posting the specific website url and one or two specific items with all
attributes and values that were submitted, may allow others to offer

more specific suggestions.

 

otherwise, the best likely course would be
to continue working directly with google --

google is the final arbiter of all policies

 

View solution in original post

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by MosheTLV (Top Contributor)
May 2017

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

counterfeit-goods, misrepresentation, is a rather serious policy flag and
generally relates to both how items are represented and supply-chains
of all items submitted or on the website -- if the brand details, how that
product and brand is represented, and their supply-chain details, do not
meet all google-shopping-ad policies, or cannot be verified by someone
at google then, the flag is usually permanent and nothing can be done.

 

of course, one disapproval or suspension may be triggered by multiple issues.

 

however, forum-members cannot look into any account or submitted data --
posting the specific website url and one or two specific items with all
attributes and values that were submitted, may allow others to offer

more specific suggestions.

 

otherwise, the best likely course would be
to continue working directly with google --

google is the final arbiter of all policies

 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Rising Star
# 3
Rising Star

If your products are authentic, and Google thinks maybe they are not, I'm wondering if you have accurate GTINs in the feed?

 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Rob, 

For the most part yes. There are a lot of data issues on google shopping though, it is quite common to get 3 or 4 listings just for the same product. The only difference being a variation in listed mpn and GTIN. Some products have up to 10 different GTINs associated with them I assume from google's inputted merchant data. To counteract this we have duplicated a few products (only about 5% of the feed) and changed the GTIN and MPN to match those already listed on google in order to maximise traffic. 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Rising Star
# 5
Rising Star

Submitting duplicate products, ie : the same product more than once is a policy violation. I recommend to remove any duplicates asap. Before your account gets suspended.

 

As this is taking unfair advantage and abuse of advertising network.

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Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Emmanuel, 

Thanks for your input. I will do that now - although most sellers in my industry have multiple listings for the same product and they are still online, so perhaps they are doing it in a different way or have slightly amended their product descriptions / titles to make them appear unique. Unfortunately the problem of Google accusing us of selling counterfeit goods when we are not (and have gone out of our way to ensure we have not) still remains. 

 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Rising Star
# 7
Rising Star

I know it is not a good thing, I recommend to continue to talk to a Google Adwords rep, I have found them always to be super helpful. My tip is to always be friendly and give them examples of the issue. And explain that you do not sell counterfeits and ask advice what to do. If you work with an Adwords manager ask him if he could also talk to the rep.

 

Regarding other merchants serving duplicates, I recommend reporting them in this link : https://support.google.com/merchants/contact/policy?hl=en&p=shop

 

Hope it helps

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Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 8
Top Contributor

changing the title and description, to appear different, for the

same physical item submitted multiple times, is still a severe

policy violation for misrepresenting the product and is grounds

for disapproval or a (permanent) suspension from the program,

at any time.

the same physical inventory item may only be submitted once.

submitting duplicate content or duplicate
physical items are both policy violations.

any global-trade-data (brand, mpn, gtin) submitted for a physical inventory
item is determined by the manufacturer, not the merchant; brand, gtin, mpn
that have been assigned by the manufacturer, to an exact, physical, item-offer
being sold, are typically stamped on the product itself, at the factory, by the
manufacturer -- check the physical item for the exact valid data to submit.

submitting invalid or inaccurate global-trade-data is a policy violation
and grounds for items to be removed from all listings or disapproved,

or a (permanent) suspension from the program, at any time.

google compares violations to the current policies -- not other sellers;
as was indicated, if other merchants seem to be violating the policies,
they may be reported directly to google.

 

any one severe policy violation, too many policy violations, too frequent
policy violations, or any such policy violation that is not fixed within
a timely manner, may trigger more severe policy-flags such as a
permanent disapproval of the flagged items, removal from the ad

auctions, or permanent suspension from the program, at any time.

 

a best practice is to hand-inspect supply-chains, physical inventory details,
all submitted data and image details, all landing-page details, the website
as a whole, and any related business-practices, against all current policies,
and fix any potential issues to come into compliance -- rather than waiting
for google to flag the item, image, site, or business.

 

otherwise, as was indicated, working directly with google is best --

google is the final arbiter of all policies.


see also
http://www.gs1.org/barcodes/ean-upc

https://support.google.com/merchants#topic=3404778

https://support.google.com/merchants#topic=3404779

 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Feed was enabled today. Took about 30 hours of emailing, calling and about £30k in lost revenue. It was triggered because a lot of my titles had the word 'original' in it. 

 

The only reason why we got this sorted was because we did not stop calling until we found a customer services agent who could and would actually help. 

Merchant Centre Suspension - Counterfeit Goods

Rising Star
# 10
Rising Star

Chris,

 

Obviously the suspension was something you couldn't have predicted, and it wasn't your fault. But given your dependency on Google Shopping, going forward I would be extremely vigilant to make sure that every single product abides by every policy.