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Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

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# 1
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Hi Forum!

 

What are the advantages and disadvantages of both supported file formats (Tab Delimited/XML) for Google Shopping Ads? 

 

Google does a good job explaining how to create each feed type but never really mentioned why or the benefits of using one?

https://support.google.com/merchants/answer/160567

 

Can some techie here explain why each format is good? is which situation would I use it? and the pros and cons of each type. Thanks!

 

 

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Accepted by topic author Boyang S
September 2015

Re: Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

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# 4
Top Contributor Alumni

Hi Boyang

 

I wouldn't be able to say for all shopping carts, however, the majority and more well known, I believe so. I have had dealings with many a shopping cart and all of those had an export of product database in either that of an xml, tab or csv file. You would need to check with the individual shopping cart to make sure. 

 

As for Google Shopping, I know of some that do and with great success, however, I am also aware of those that provide a very basic level of export, still called froogle (stopped being called that in approx 2007) which would be unable to meet product specifications at present without some serious modification.

 

If the shopping cart itself does not offer an export specifically for use with Google Shopping, sometimes there are plug-ins from third parties, or even that of the shopping cart itself, that can be purchased for this use. 

 

I would advise caution though as the success of these can vary greatly.

 

Tom Wilson
Freelance Adwords & Google Shopping Consultant

If you find this or another response helpful within the forum "please accept as solution" to further assist and direct others.

 

 

 

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Re: Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

Top Contributor Alumni
# 2
Top Contributor Alumni

Hi Boyang

 

Personally, I feel for the novice or non "techie" tab feeds are the way to go.

 

I have never found again, in my personal experience, one performing better than the other. Ultimately, you are simply providing the same data in an alternative form, hence in reality the same data to Google for their use in Google Shopping.

 

Some users will have the option to export from the shopping cart software an xml formatted feed, if so, I would advise them to go with this. However, if you are hand creating your feed, tab delimited feeds are usually quicker to create as the content of the attributes is all that is required, rather than having to also create tags for each line. 

 

Tom Wilson
Freelance Adwords & Google Shopping Consultant

If you find this or another response helpful within the forum "please accept as solution" to further assist and direct others.

Re: Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
# 3
Follower ✭ ✭ ☆
Hi Tom!
thanks for the quick reply
that was really helpful

one last thing
do most shopping carts software have the option to export XML files? I would imagine retailers with thousands of items to pull XMLs through shopping cart software?
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Boyang S
September 2015

Re: Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

Top Contributor Alumni
# 4
Top Contributor Alumni

Hi Boyang

 

I wouldn't be able to say for all shopping carts, however, the majority and more well known, I believe so. I have had dealings with many a shopping cart and all of those had an export of product database in either that of an xml, tab or csv file. You would need to check with the individual shopping cart to make sure. 

 

As for Google Shopping, I know of some that do and with great success, however, I am also aware of those that provide a very basic level of export, still called froogle (stopped being called that in approx 2007) which would be unable to meet product specifications at present without some serious modification.

 

If the shopping cart itself does not offer an export specifically for use with Google Shopping, sometimes there are plug-ins from third parties, or even that of the shopping cart itself, that can be purchased for this use. 

 

I would advise caution though as the success of these can vary greatly.

 

Tom Wilson
Freelance Adwords & Google Shopping Consultant

If you find this or another response helpful within the forum "please accept as solution" to further assist and direct others.

 

 

 

Re: Tab Delimited vs. XML Feeds

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# 5
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Thank you so much!