Google announced this week that it has launched a new shipping configuration tool in Merchant Center aimed at making it easier to configure shipping rates. The idea is that this will help merchants' prices remain consistent with what Google shows users.
"Imagine a shopper has searched for a product on Google Shopping and found the perfect offer at the perfect total price inclusive of shipping," explain Angelika Rohrer and Sven Herschel of the Google Shopping Team. "They reach checkout on the merchant’s site only to realize that the final price differs from what they’ve seen on Google due to inaccurate shipping costs. Our users consistently tell us this is a primary source of frustration."
The tool lets you select from more shipping methods, including customizable methods based on a hierarchical set of rules. You can differentiate between various shipping methods (like ground versus express) for the same country. This lets Google display the lowest possible price to the user.
It also lets you configure rates based on shipping destination using countries, states, or cities. You can indicate when products don't shop to certain regions, and create a repository of shipping methods to reuse across configurations.
The company also added a new shipping attribute to assign a shipping label to specific products.
"You can configure shipping rates based on this label," the team says. "For example, you could apply a label like 'perishable' or 'bulky' to a group of products requiring special shipping rates or a label specific for promotional items. After adding this attribute to a group of items, you may manage or configure the custom rate in shipping settings in Merchant Center."
Google says it has already migrated current shipping settings to the new tool, and it doesn't require any updates.
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