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What is Google Merchant Center

Google Shopping Merchant Center

Google Shopping Merchant Center is a free platform by Google which allows user to upload their product catalog or listings to Google. These uploaded product listings can then be used in Google Shopping Ads to improve sales. Let us get started with setting up of Merchant Center.

How to set up Google Shopping Merchant Center?

Since Google Merchant Center is a platform of Google so one needs to have a Google id to log into it. Type in “Google Merchant Center” in your explorer address bar and reach at the login screen.

Sign in to Merchant Center and enter the following information:

    1. Business Information:

      1. Enter the country of your business operations.
      2. Type in the Business name.
      3. Mention your country’s Time Zone.
    2. Accept the terms of use and click on Continue. 
    3. Choose the purpose of your adding products to the Merchant Center and click on continue.
    4. Click on Create your account to get started.

You will taken to the Merchant Center Overview screen.

    1. Click on Tools and then Business information.
    2. Update your business information in detail in “About your business” section
    3. Enter the Website URL for your online store. Make sure you own the URL as you need to verify and claim it for product additions.
    4. Proceed further to claim your URL which can be done in multiple ways.
    5. Once done, click Verify URL to submit your URL to Google Search Console for verification and claim it.

Once website URL is verified and claimed, it can be used as the landing page for your Google Shopping ads. 

Go to Tools and then “linked accounts” to connect Google Ads account with the Merchant Center. It will enable pulling products in Google shopping type ads.

Move to your Google ads account to approve for connecting the Merchant Center to it.

How to add products in Google Merchant Center?

Go to Products option displaying on left side of the Merchant Center overview screen.

Products can be added manually on one-on-one basis or through product feed file / Google Shopping feed / Merchant Center feed. Adding products manually can be quite tiresome and there are multiple ways to get the products added quickly –

    1. Using product feed file which can be submitted using Google sheets or XML files.
    2. If product details are easily available in some tabular form, requisite details can be uploaded in a Google sheet. These details are then fetched in by the Merchant Center and thus products become available.
    3. There are multiple plug-ins available which helps exporting product details from the website or Woo-commerce in XML form. This XML file can then be used to upload products in the Merchant Center. “Product Feed Pro” is a popular plug-in available for WordPress sites which facilitates export of product details.

Thus we can run Google shopping ads for our products listed in Google Merchant account. It is a very useful tool for the businesses which have e-commerce stores and want to take advantage of Google Shopping ads to promote their products.

Tune in to my facebooktwitter and instagram account to know more about the digital marketing and how it can help scale your business to new heights.

You can read more about setting up of Google Shopping Merchant Center here or can reach out to me for any help. Best of luck and happy selling

Retargeting remarketing by ads

Retargeting by Ads

Do you wonder what caused similar products or services to show time and again even when you had just once visited the page? Yes, you guessed it right. This is retargeting by ads where a tag or pixel gets attached to your browser cookies. It causes similar product show again to the same visitors. 

The result is a sequence of online ads diligently following the potential customer, reminding them of the product or service and telling them to close the deal. Visitors can either be targeted by the Google ads or any of the social media ads like Facebook ads. 

What actually remarketing or retargeting means?

Marketing is the process of creating, communicating, delivering and exchanging your products or service offerings that has value for your customers and users. Similarly, retargeting by ads is the process of remarketing of your product or service to the target audience which has shown some intent in your offering. Customer intent may or may not have resulted in  sales or conversion.

Thus retargeting by ads would serve as a reminding process for –

  • A Customer who has not taken the desired action or converted as yet.
  • A Customer who had once got converted and more likely to visit and remain loyal to the seller / service provider.

Technicality behind Retargeting or Remarketing

Do you remember everytime you visit a new site, a prompt comes up saying the site uses cookies and you allow it to get to the site quickly. In fact, your intent or interest gets captured by the site. Basically, a tag or pixel is attached to the owner site so that whenever a visitor accepts the terms, his/her details are  captured and used for the remarketing purposes. Once a site has the details of the users / visitors to the site, this same audience details is used to retarget the audience through an ad. Its all about showing the products/ services to the same users who had once visited your site. 

Pros & Cons of retargeting by ads

  • Greatly improves brand recognition as target audience is the one which is already aware about your brand and service. They have already visited your page in search of their demands and often also termed as interested audience.
  • Conversion gets better as target audience already knows you better than the first time  visitor to your site.
  • Better ROI as the number of quality clicks increase resulting in lower spend to sales ratio (ACoS) or higher ROAS.
  • Gaining loyal customers of your brand. It causes repeat customers availing your service time and again. It immensely improves organic traffic in a longer run.
  • It may cause frustration to the audience as time and again same product is shown which sometimes get annoying.
  • What if the visitor has already availed your service and still being targeted with the same product? It becomes just waste of an ad.
  • Visitor may feel like being spied or whether any of his/her critical detail has been  leaked in the public domain.

So get started with the Google ads or any other Social Media Ads and make it more effective by the retargeting technique. It greatly enhances online business growth with improved profitability. Maintain a fine balance considering the pros and cons of retargeting by ads.

You can also scroll through my facebooktwitter and instagram channels for more insights on digital marketing.

Online business growth

Online Business Growth

Online presence of a business has now become a necessity. If one wants business growth, online marketing or digital marketing gives hosts of opportunities. Online or internet marketing is the medium that business need to cash upon to reach new heights. SEO helps the business grow online more speedily and profitably. 


This blog article intends to document the step-by-step journey for business growth through Digital marketing. So lets start and help build business online.

Know the Customer and Product:

Business is a profession to serve and satisfy needs of the user in exchange of some service or money. Thus, a business or a service which knows its customer and product the best, is bound to succeed in its endeavor to reach at the top.

Who is the Customer?

Assume yourself as a customer and try to figure out how the product or service is going to help you?

      • Who would be requiring the product?
      • Check for if the product or the service is going to serve some particular segment?
      • How it is meeting the user needs?

How the Product is going to serve the user?

      • What features a user would be looking for and what is the USP of the product?
      • How the product is different from the competitors?
      • What features of the product makes it a unique composition? 

Once one knows the product or service inside out, better the position he/she is in to judge and know the target audience. It would help build a clear view of the future business plan and marketing strategies for business growth

Current state of the Business operations and its management:

Before one gets down to have online marketing plan for the business, it is very critical to know the current functioning of the business operations.

    • What all processes are being followed to get the desired business results?
    • Are their any different entities involved in running the business operations? 
    • Did the business apply any traditional marketing practices for the promotion of the business?
    • How effective were the marketing strategies if any applied in the past? What were the results of such promotions?
    • Where the customers for the business are coming from? Does the  business pitches in new offers and promotions to its customer base?
    • What is the brand & perception value of the business?

Online Business Growth Plan & Digital Marketing Strategy Framework:

Once we know the current state of the business, now is the time to look for expansion and growth of business through digital marketing. One need to make good use of the following steps to achieve the success. Here is the step wise journey to the business growth plan –

Phase 1: Initial setup

    1. Look for the domain name and its availability on the internet. Domain name should clearly signify the business and what it is for.
    2. Search for the highly relevant keywords for the business which one wants the site to rank upon. Keywords should absolutely resonate with the customer and product / service being offered.
    3. Create business site & use high-quality content in terms of text, images, info-graphics and videos to showcase the business. 
    4. Optimize the website content as per search engine requirements (SEO) to see it rank and come on top of the search engine result page (SERP).
    5. Businesses which are already set up, riding on the traditional marketing strategies and have healthy customer base should make use of –
      1. Testimonials given by users.
      2. Customer reviews and feedback for the business.
      3. Display media in the form of customer images and videos work wonders for the business. 

Phase 2: Business setup

    1. Registering business with Google Business listings which allows it to be found more easily on Google searches. It is considered as a first step towards Online Business Growth.
    2. List the business on Local directories so that whenever user or customer searches for alike services, the business shines on top of the search engine result pages. 
    3. Set up Google Search Console and Google Analytics Tools to keep track of the website traffic and audience.

Phase 3: Recurring setup

    1. Create a blog posting schedule and regularly update the website & social media platforms with the latest news & offers by the business. Keep the audience engaging with the business and gain loyal customers for it.
    2. Regularly research for new keywords which are relevant to the business and more likely to get converted. Keep on updating the  content and stay abreast with the changing digital marketing situations. 

Phase 4: Advanced setup

Social Media setup:

      • Check if the customers are already available online and on which platforms? Use appropriate social media platform and create accounts on them. Feed target audience with the latest updates about the business and keep them engaging.
      • Make use of viral memes (if suitable) or any other trending topic that will resonate with the audience.

Paid Ads setup:

      • Start advertising online using Google Adwords, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest etc. One should have a well thought out strategy for paid ads and online advertisements to achieve Online Business Growth. More importantly, ads also help you retain users / buyers / customers using retargeting.
      • Google Ads:

It gives host of features to target customer in multiple ways. Target customers using highly relevant keywords to the business. Place call buttons, location information, brand features on the ad itself which takes the business a step closer to the potential customers. Add site-link extensions, links to specific parts of the website, additional text and more. Make good use of Google ads extensions to improve Google Adwords’ performance.

Google offers you multiple free tools that can help build products online, manage them, track their performance – Google Search console, Google Analytics, Google Merchant center.

      • Facebook ads or other Social Media ads:

Social Media ads provide a different perspective to the business. Here customer targeting is more towards the intent of the customers or its search behavior. Primarily display content is more used in Social Media advertising.

Stay tuned to my Social Media Channels to know more: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Quora

Setting up Google Search Console

How to submit Sitemaps?

Submit sitemaps to help search engines search about pages on your sites. SEO helps grow business and website traffic but sitemap makes site searchable on search engines and thus complement results. Sitemap is an XML file which stores links to all your pages, blogs, images and all contents of your website that are available for crawling. It is an easy way to help robots to crawl all listed web-pages and index them within search engine.

Google Search Console or Google Webmaster is a free service offered by Google that helps you monitor, maintain and troubleshoot your site’s presence in Google Search results. It helps you understand and improve how Google sees your site. Submitting Sitemap is what makes your site and its content searchable on Google. Below are the point-wise steps on how to submit sitemaps in Google Webmaster or Search console.

    1. Open Google Webmaster or Search Console.
    2. Click on Sign in.
    3. Login to your Webmaster login.
    4. Go to Sitemap.
    5. Open a new tab and type in your domain name. Append
      1. “sitemap_index.xml”: if your site is made in wordpress and Yoast SEO is installed as a plugin. Yoast SEO helps create sitemap file for the site.
      2. “sitemap.xml”: if your site is made through an shopify site.
        For example:
        WordPress site:
        Shopify site:”
    6. You will get a sitemap xml file displayed in your browser.
    7. Paste “sitemap_index.xml”  for  the wordpress site or “sitemap.xml” for the shopify site against the domainname in search console ( “Enter Sitemap URL”)
    8. Click on submit.
    9. Search console would show success in setting up of sitemap within few minutes.
What is Sitemap?

What is a Sitemap?

What is a Sitemap of the website?

A sitemap is a file providing information about the pages, videos and other files on your site and the relationships between them. It helps Google and other search engines crawl and map website. A sitemap tells the crawler which files you think are important in your site.  

It also provides valuable information about the files, for example –

  • Information about the pages.
  • When the page was last updated.
  • How often the page is changed.
  • Alternate language versions of a page.

Sitemaps are mainly used to improve the index process of your website by search engines, they can be used to provide accessibility to certain pages as well. It does not affect the normal way crawler bots index your page – it just extends the visibility and accessibility of your content.

Search engines like Google always try to display the most relevant results  to people for any given search query. In order do this effectively, they use site crawlers to read, organize and index information on the Internet.

XML sitemaps make it easier for search engine crawlers to read the content on your site and index the pages accordingly. As a result, this increases chances of improving the SEO ranking of the website.

Submitting a sitemap is very critical in SEO rank of your website. Click to know: How to submit sitemap for the website so that it be indexed by Google and other search engines in an intelligent manner.

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