Google Base – Second Try!

Generally I am a fan of Google products. I can’t help it; until now I have found it to be the best search engine (although results are deteriorating, but perhaps that is a general trend, not just Google’s fault!), their Webmaster tools and Analytics are extremely helpful for anybody running a commercial website. A while back I was also using AdSense on one of my sites. I did earn some money with it but because I was forced to give up my site, I couldn’t keep earning from ads either.

One product I have not yet used is AdWords but I’m on it; once my site(s) are settled in a bit and optimised properly, I will try running and Ad Campaign with the voucher my hosting company so graciously provided me with (£50! and all I had to do was pay around £10 on hosting.. now that’s a bargain!) Oh and not to mention the kind people at Google gave me a voucher as well… £70 after all I did was use Analytics for a while.

Either way, that’s not what I wanted to discuss here… My point is: I generally am biased towards liking Google. So I wanted to try Google Base; a tool for submitting your products to the Google shopping search results. And I don’t know about anybody else, but I use it quite heavily, mainly for comparing prices of products on various websites.

So I happily and naively went into Google Base, opened an account, and read up on how to add products. Because my site has LOADS of them (and I do mean LOADS!), the datafeed option was my salvation. I created a tab delimited txt file in Excel, containing around 2500 products. And I submitted it. That was around a week ago. The first thing that happens is, Google base tells you the file is being processed, which could take up to an hour. After an hour it tells you how many errors there were, and how many products were submitted. And then you get a list of products and their status is “Published … searchable soon”. As long as this displays, you should sit patiently and wait for up to 48 hours until the products are in the search results. Then the status will say something like “Published and searchable”. Right on time, within a day or so the status changed to searchable and I got excited. Could not wait to find out how many people search for my products on google shopping. Guess what: none!

Not a single visitor… absolutely nothing. So I logged in, and tried searching for some of my own products. No result; all I get is competitors’ products. Then I went through the help files… They tell you a way to search for your own products using your user id. Nothing! Not a single product of mine was in the index.

Strange isn’t it? And if you search through help files and forum posts, all you get is pointers on what you could’ve done wrong; set the wrong country, item type, submitted items without prices etc. Well I did everything exactly as described, still nothing in the search results. So I’ve waited for a week, thought maybe I need to be more patient. But today I’ve had enough, deleted all my products, and my feed, and uploaded a new one. (exactly as the Google troubleshooting page told me to; resubmit and see what happens).

But as it stands now, I don’t like Google base as much as I thought I would. To me it seems like a buggy product. Good thing it’s free, because if I had wasted more than a bit of time, I would’ve been quite pissed off!

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2 Comments »

  1. odzer Said:

    Why do I have the feeling I have tried this before under a different name from Google! Anyway I have noticed that Google Base is still “Beta”, this could mean some hiccups I remember Google Mail crashing a couple of times while it was still in its Beta years. If I may suggest write them a naggy email!

  2. hedonist666 Said:

    Yes Google Base is a Beta version. And they used to have Froogle.. which was also a Beta version for a long time I believe and it did pretty much the same thing as Base. I haven’t really followed it and don’t know if it ever came out of the Beta stage. Either way, I am going to see what happens in a few days, if hopefully my products start to show up this time around.


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