Inteligentne algorytmy reklamowe Heraldbee otrzymały dofinansowanie z polskiego Narodowego Centrum Badań i Rozwoju, które jest agencją wykonawczą Ministerstwa Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego.

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Google Shopping without GTIN


What is GTIN and why is it important in the process of creating Google Shopping campaign? Today we will respond to these questions. Additionally, we will suggest a great alternative to time-consuming, manual GTIN upload.


What is GTIN?

GTIN is one of the product attributes which have to be inserted into the product data feed file in the Google Merchant Center. The abbreviation stands for Global Trade Item Number. As the name suggests, it is a unique number assigned to each product which helps Google in its identification. Thanks to GTIN, Google can correctly classify the product and in consequence, match the ad with more relevant customer’s queries.


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GTIN is a general attribute name in Google Merchant Center, however, it’s not always the name of the identifier. See below the list of other numbers which may serve as GTIN in some regions:

  • UPC – Universal Product Code, it is used mostly in North America, consists of 12 digits, also called GTIN-12
  • EAN – European Article Number, it is used outside of North America, usually consists of 13 digits, also called GTIN-13
  • JAN – Japanese Article Number, it is used only in Japan, consists of 8 or 13 digits, also called GTIN-13
  • ISBN – International Standard Book Number, used worldwide for books, it used to consist of 10 digits, now it is 13 digits, also called GTIN-13
  • ITF-14 – used for packages, consists of 14 digits


In product data feed the name of the attribute is [gtin] for all of the above formats. All those numbers can be found under the barcode of a product.



Why is GTIN so important?

Why is GTIN so important in Google Shopping campaign? The answer is simple – for a few years now, it is required by Google which means it is obligatory to insert it in the product data feed (if the product has it).

If a shop owner doesn’t meet this requirement, Google does not activate their ads. Missing or incorrect GTIN appears as one of the reasons for product’s disapproval in the diagnostics tab. Google justifies the requirement of adding GTIN to every product with the fact, that it really serves the seller. Products with GTIN are most likely matched with accurate search results because Google knows more about them. Such items can also be advertised beyond Google, for example on Youtube or Google’s partners’ sites. GTIN indirectly increases the quality of an ad and positively affects the conversion rate.

The GTIN attribute is connected with two other attributes – brand of the product and MPN (Manufacturer Part Number). Those are also required by Google if available for a product.



Missing or incorrect GTIN appears as one of the reasons for product’s disapproval in the diagnostics tab


Products without GTIN

Not all the products have GTIN, brand and MPN. If the product is unique, vintage, handcrafted, antique, second hand, etc. it doesn’t have an identifier. But there’s no need to worry, it doesn’t mean it’s not possible to advertise it via Google Shopping. What needs to be done in this situation is to submit an [Identifier_Exists] attribute with “FALSE” as a value for all such items.


How can Heraldbee App help?

Heraldbee App uses Google Shopping API  which means it directly connects Google Merchant Center account with the store’s website. In consequence, there is no need of uploading product data feed manually into Google Merchant Center. Heraldbee sources all the information from the shop’s website and uploads it to Google Shopping campaign by itself. It’s no different with the GTIN. What’s more, Heraldbee can also cope with a case when GTIN is missing. It automatically sets up the [Identifier_Exists] attribute to “FALSE”. Therefore, Heraldbee not only saves time by updating all the necessary identifiers. It also doesn’t bother you with errors whenever an identifier is not available. The app can deal with it without manual intervention.

Heraldbee not only saves time by updating all the necessary identifiers. It also doesn’t bother you with errors.


We would like to sum up today’s post with three conclusions:

✓ If a product has a GTIN, it should be inserted in the product data feed. In such a case, Google requires it as mandatory information.

✓ If a product doesn’t have a GTIN, it can still be advertised via Google Shopping

✓ Heraldbee App is able to automatically update all necessary data related to GTIN


Don’t wait any longer, start building your marketing campaign!



A big fan of Internet Marketing who ejoys Automation Tools. His mission is to help small and medium-sized companies manage and advertise their e-commerce businesses.

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