United States – As more businesses in the APAC region turn to eCommerce amid the pandemic, Google has decided to make it free for merchants to list their products on the Google Shopping tab, which takes effect in mid-October.

The free listing has been available in India and Indonesia since 2019 and was earlier introduced to the United States in April as part of its COVID support to retailers.

“For retailers, this change means free exposure to millions of people who come to Google every day for their shopping needs, regardless of whether they advertise on Google. For shoppers, it means more products from more stores, discoverable through the Google Shopping tab. For advertisers, it means paid campaigns can now be augmented with free listings,” said President of Google for APAC Scott Beaumont on a product update.

Google said the time of the pandemic changed the way people shop and sell in the region. According to Google analysis, 53% of online shoppers in APAC stated that they’ll choose to buy online more frequently after the pandemic, while almost 40% who weren’t online shoppers before said they intend to continue buying online.

To help retailers adjust to the changes, Google will be offering skills training through its dedicated learning resource Grow with Google. Google will also be sharing research and insights on its market research platform Think with Google to inform retailers’ business decisions.

In addition, Google has launched a playbook and webinar series on how to better manage digital storefronts. It will also be working closely with a number of partners to help merchants manage their products and inventory; this includes global partners like eCommerce platform Shopify, and those across the region such as Vietnam-based SEO website design platform Haravan, eCommerce Shopline in Taiwan and Hong Kong, and Thailand’s eCommerce business provider LnwShop.  

The free listings will be automatically applied to retailers already registered on its Merchant Center and those currently using Shopping Ads, while for new registrants, Google will continue working to streamline the onboarding process over the coming weeks.