Google Business Profiles will remove product management for Merchant Center?

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WhiteSpark People showed screenshots of Google Business Profile limiting the control you have over your product listings within your local panel. They showed how “businesses can no longer edit existing products on their Google Business Profiles and can only add new products through Merchant Center.” Google Products is now automatically linked to Merchant Center in GBP Manager. Google later that day reversed this change.

I spoke with someone at Google and they reassured me that this was a bug that lasted about a few hours and that they have no intention of forcing people to manage their products in Google Merchant Center.

Honestly I guess it would make sense to move Product Management from Business Profiles to Merchant Center as Google is slowly moving people away from Google Business Profile Manager in general but again Google said no – while you can manage your products in Merchant Center, Google does not intend to prevent anyone from managing their products in Google Profile Manager.

Darren Shaw asked Twitter “Is this the end of Google products as we know them? Businesses can no longer edit existing products on their Google Business Profiles (GBP) and can only add new products through Merchant Center!”

When they try to edit products, they get this red notice that says “Products cannot be edited. You can only delete products”.

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Personally, I see the possibility of adding products to my business profile. But I’ve never done it, so I don’t know if it will work and I can’t modify it afterwards. I’m not selling a product so I’d rather not test this – I believe the folks at WhiteSpark:

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After a few hours of this bug, Google got things back on track, but it makes you wonder if that’s the direction Google is headed. I mean, it makes sense that Google would do this based on all the other signals. Again, Google said no – that’s not the direction Google is going with this.

Discussion forum on Twitter.

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