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Will changing SKU numbers in Google Merchant have a negative impact?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

My clients products have different SKU numbers in their Google Merchant account compared to on their website and in Volo.


They want to make everything consistent and was wondering if changing the SKU's in Google Merchant will have any negative impact.


I believe this will not have a negative impact, am I correct?

2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Will changing SKU numbers in Google Merchant have a negative impact?

Rising Star
# 2
Rising Star
Hi Cherie,

Doing this will have a negative impact on your Shopping Campaigns. Changing a product ID is akin to changing a keyword in paid search; you are essentially deleting it and creating a new one. While not disclosed in the AdWords interface, Shopping Campaign products have a sort of quality score. The product ID is used to retain historical data on the performance of that product and thus important to the quality score. If the product ID is changed then much of that data is lost.

For example, say you had a product with a very high CTR but changed the product ID. Google would view this as a new product and not know that it will have a high CTR. Because of this you will pay higher CPCs for the same position until more data is accumulated on this "new" product.

Also note that your products would need to be reviewed again if the product ID is changed. This generally takes 2-4 business days to complete and means that you would not have any Shopping ads live during that period.

Hope this helps,
Jim Vaillancourt, AdWords Rising Star, LinkedIn
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Re: Will changing SKU numbers in Google Merchant have a negative impact?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor

in addition to the negative impacts of resetting quality (scores) and
triggering re-reviews, any id change may also require changes to the
shopping-campaign if any product-groups are based on id and will
reset per-item performance histories.

the id is designed to map an item to a physical

inventory item-offer, for each target-country.

also, if not done carefully, such an across-the-board id change may also
result in duplicate listings and trigger an automated policy violation --
generally, be certain to inspect all product-groups and delete all existing
items within the merchant-center first, before making such an id change
to all items.


a best-practice is to use a mix of letters and numbers for id
and never reuse any existing id during such an id change; e.g.


as an aside, if any id-related tags are used on the landing-page,
be certain that the id change is handled appropriately on the site,
especially if dynamic-remarketing-for-retail is being used.

Re: Will changing SKU numbers in Google Merchant have a negative impact?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thank you for the explanation.

I assume changing the SKU numbers in Volo and on their website would also have a negative affect else where.

What are the negative impacts of not having consistent SKU numbers across different platforms?

I would think that changing the Volo SKU's and the site SKU's to match the Google Shopping Merchant ones would beneficial and increase the shopping campaign quality?

Re: Will changing SKU numbers in Google Merchant have a negative impact?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
I have contacted Volo and they have advised the following:

So, we can change SKU’s within Volo, and echo these out onto the website, eBay and Amazon – however, it will involve manually updating the sku information in Volo, revising all items and custom labels on eBay, and downloading a products report from Amazon to map the ASIN’s to the new SKU’s. Overall it is not advised, as this can cause a ripple effect of errors whilst the data is being updated.