Before you can start using certain programs in Merchant Center, you need to verify and claim your store’s website URL. Verification lets Google know that you are an authorized owner of a website URL. Claiming associates the verified website URL with your Merchant Center account.

How it works

If you have never verified your website URL with Google before, you’ll start by verifying your website. To do this, you’ll choose one of four ways to allow Google to communicate with your website. These methods add markers to your site so that Google can find your site, and confirm that you are the authorized owner of both your website and your Merchant Center account. This code does not give Google any other sort of access or permissions.

To complete the process, you’ll claim your site. That means you’re reserving the URL you’ve verified for use with your Merchant Center account. Note that only the user who verifies the website will later be able to claim it.

Keep in mind

The links you provide in your product data must match the URL, including the top level domain (for example, .com, .net), that you claim in your account. Items submitted for any domain other than the one registered in your Merchant Center account will not process successfully.

Instructions

Step 1: Enter your website URL

You can verify a URL at any time using these steps:

  1. Sign in to your Merchant Center account.
  2. From the navigation menu, click the tools icon
  3. Select Business information under “Tools.”
  4. Click the Website tab.
  5. Enter your URL. Learn about the requirements for this URL
  6. Click Save.

You can also access this page by clicking on Provide your website URL in the setup pages for Shopping ads and surfaces across Google.

Step 2: Verify your website URL

Verifying your website confirms that you are the owner of your website URL, and that you have the ability to make edits to its content. To verify your website, you’ll use one of four methods. Each of these options allows Google to verify that you are the owner and that you have edit access to your website.

If you’ve previously verified your website for use with other Google products, such as Search Console, you don’t have to separately verify it for use with Merchant Center. Your website is verified, and you can skip to the claiming step below.

Google Analytics

If you’re already using Google Analytics and are an administrator of your account, this could be an easy way to verify your website URL. The Google Analytics tracking code is used only to verify your website URL ownership. No Google Analytics data will be accessed.

  1. Ensure that you have set up the Analytics tag. If so, you’ll find the tag in the head section of your page. Learn more about how to set up the Analytics tag.
  2. Click the blue “Verify URL” button at the bottom right to submit your URL to Google Search Console for verification.

Once you submit your URL, you’ll be sent a confirmation email from Google Search Console.

Google Tag Manager

If you’re an account-level “Administrator” for Google Tag Manager, this could be a great way to verify your website URL. The Google Tag Manager container ID is used only to verify website ownership. No Google Tag Manager data will be accessed.

  1. Ensure that you have setup and installed Google Tag Manager. If so you, you’ll have the container installation code snippet. If not, follow the the instructions on how to Setup and install Tag Manager.
  2. Click the blue “Verify URL” button at the bottom right to submit your URL to Google Search Console for verification.

Once you have submitted your URL, you’ll be sent a confirmation email from Google Search Console.

Access to your server: HTML tag

If you’re able to edit the HTML code of your site’s index page, you can add a meta tag to your site’s home page to verify your website URL. This code is only a marker, and does not give Google access to or permissions for your site. To stay verified, do not remove the HTML tag even after you’ve verified and claimed your website URL.​

  1. Copy the custom meta tag generated for your site and paste it into your site’s home page. It should go in the <head> section, before the first <body> section.
  2. Click the blue “Verify URL” button at the bottom right to submit your URL to Google Search Console for verification.

If the tag code is not pasted in your site’s home page, you may be taken to the URL redirect path, which will take you to another web page.

Access to your server: HTML file upload

If you’re able to upload new files to your server, you can verify your website URL with an HTML file upload. To stay verified, do not remove the HTML file even after you’ve verified and claimed your website URL.

  1. Click and download the custom HTML file generated: 
  2. Upload the file to your website.
  3. Confirm the upload by visiting the site address you see in your HTML file upload URL verification instructions.  
  4. Click the blue “Verify URL” button at the bottom right to submit your URL to Google Search Console for verification.

Once you have submitted your URL, you’ll be sent a confirmation email from Google Search Console.

Step 3: Claim your website URL

Claiming your website URL gives you the exclusive right to use your website in connection with your Merchant Center account. You can claim your website URL once it’s verified.

  1. Simply click the blue “Claim URL” button at the bottom right.

After your URL is claimed, you’ll need to refetch your feed. If you use the Content API, you’ll need to re-upload your feed so it can be recrawled.

 

How to verify when using multiple website domains

Multi-client accounts allow you to submit items for more than one website domain.

Multi-client account owners may verify and claim a website URL for the parent account. Typically, the parent account should verify and claim the top-level domain, for example: http://example.com. Each sub-account will then automatically inherit the claim and can submit products for that domain.

Alternatively, each sub-account can also choose to verify and claim a completely different website URL instead. Learn more about verifying and claiming website URLs for multi-client accounts

Integrate with third-party eCommerce platforms

If your store website is hosted by a third-party eCommerce platform, there may be additional options for verifying and claiming your website provided by the platform. Check with your platform for more information.

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