Google Shopping has begun to test a new feature that would allow local businesses to indicate that they can offer “curbside pickup” in a bid to help retailers to communicate with customers better during the coronavirus pandemic.
With physical stores closed around the world, Google has been updating its services to help local businesses adapt to the changes thrust upon the world. The search giant has been updating its messaging options and business listings within Google My Business to allow companies to note special opening hours and delivery options. Now, it is testing the curbside pickup badge for Local Inventory Ads.
The badge is aimed at those using the local inventory ads within Google Shopping and appears in black text above the photograph of the product. The test is in beta and only available to any advertisers who have finished the onboarding process for store pickup and have local inventory ads running.
What are Local Inventory Ads?
These ads are specifically designed for bricks and mortar retailers using Google Shopping. It allows these retailers to note whether the item in the ad is available at the physical store. These can be enabled by reviewing the qualifications within a Merchant Center account and enabling the feature. Once enabled, retailers then create a product feed similar to one used within the regular Google Shopping feed. There are some differences such as the need to specify store codes and quantities of stock of every item.
After the feed is uploaded, the merchant can designate a contact to work with Google to coordinate the inventory verification. Once verified, ads are then able to be run.
The feature will be available in locations where Local Inventory Ads have already been launched, including the UK, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany and the USA.
Businesses not running any local inventory ads are able to use their My Business Listing to highlight their pickup and delivery options. This can help a business to publicise the available options within both Search and Maps.
Google is helping businesses in every way it can to get through the coronavirus pandemic. At Engage Web, we can also help any business with its online presence during the crisis and beyond.