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The last 24 hours or so has brought some much-anticipated "closure" to the uncertainty surrounding plans for Google's marketplace shopping destination Google Express.
Well, revelation, Google Express is to be NO MORE.
While it was originally announced back in May of 2019 during Google Marketing Live, the homepage itself was first made available only in France and India.
Rumors of the eventual "demise of Google Express" had been swirling even before that, and now it seems that all the pieces are finally falling into place.
One Chapter Closes, Another Opens
Call it what you will: a closure, a sunsetting, a merger, a shutdown.
Google is defining the "removal" of Google Express as an integration into the newly revamped Google Shopping Experience.
Google booted up Express as its attempt to compete with the likes of Amazon by providing a unified shopping experience for consumers that included such conveniences as a universal shopping cart and 1-click reordering.
Over the years, Google attracted retailers to the platform via their Shopping Actions program - even the likes of retail giants like Walmart, Target, and Costco. As a "marketplace" of sorts, Express allowed retailers to upload their products to Merchant Center, enable their product feed for inclusion in the program, and sell direct-to consumers through Google Express.
Google had even gone so far as to advertise those products on behalf of their retail partners through traditional formats such as Shopping ads surfaced on Google Search.
On select products, shoppers also benefited from being backed by the Buy with Google guarantee.
Yet, even with all of that, Express never really took enough of a foothold with consumers and that is the most likely reason for the shuttering of its doors only to be merged fully into Google Shopping.
What Does This Mean for Retailers?
Boiling it all down, very little. The Shopping Actions program still remains - it will just no longer be tied directly to "Google Express".
Retailers will still be required to submit a request to be eligible for the program and follow all the guidelines and policies outlined by Google.
It also does not look like anything will be changing on the Merchant Center side of things. Retailers still must submit a feed, maintain their product data to be in good standing with Google, and track their orders through Merchant Center.
There, so far at least, have also been no mentions of any change to the pay-per-sale commission structure between merchants and Google.
If you are selling or planning to sell via Shopping Actions, it will now only tie your products into the unified Google Shopping experience moving forward.
For anyone who is already selling through Shopping Actions, we recommend reaching out to the Shopping Actions team or your dedicated contact at Google for further information or to ask any questions related to your account.