A product feed is a file that contains all information about the products of a specific company or companies in the e-commerce industry. Product feeds supply the content that is presented on many kinds of e-commerce websites such as search engines, price comparison websites, affiliate networks, and other similar aggregators of e-commerce information. In some cases they are generated by the online retailer and in some cases the information is extracted using web scraping or harvested web harvesting from the online shops website.
Product feed applications 
Product feeds are an integral part of online live scores, sales and marketing, particularly in the case of online retailers with many different products or with products that are described by many different attributes, or in industries in which pricing and availability frequently change.
Product feeds are used within a variety of online marketing channels that help shoppers locate the product they wish to purchase and drive the traffic to the retailers' website. These marketing channels include:
- Price comparison websites - Feeds are the product descriptive content needed to run sites that compare pricing (price comparison websites), attributes (mostly in vertical search portals) and availability.
- Paid search affiliates - PPC campaigns use API's that receive a range of attributes within product feeds to determine campaign keywords and bidding.
- Affiliate networks – affiliate networks funnel products though their platforms from merchants to affiliates.
- Marketplaces – receive product feeds from their big merchants (eBay and Amazon for example).
Feed formats 
- Google base supports tab-delimited text format and various XML formats including RSS1.0, RSS2.0, and Atom feed format.
- Other product listing sites use proprietary formats that are either plain text or XML format.
- Emerging RDF format: Semantic web standards such as RDF are taking root. It is expected product feed will soon adopt this new web standard.
Thu, 02 May 2013 11:50:08 -0700
Google Shopping has provided a good return on investment for many merchants. To achieve even better performance and higher sales, merchants should focus on their Google product feeds. I addressed that last month, in "Google Shopping Feed: 3 Things ...
Internet Marketing News
Internet Marketing News
Thu, 23 May 2013 02:45:21 -0700
Product listing ads feature large product images, and are triggered from a product feed in Google Merchant Centre. Merchants have to pay Google every time a searchers clicks their product listing ads. Since the changes rolled out, retailers using ...
Search Engine Land
Wed, 08 May 2013 09:51:44 -0700
Here's a link to the handy Summary of Attribute Requirements which also links to the detailed product feed specifications. There is now dedicated support for energy efficiency labels and unit pricing for merchants targeting countries in the European ...
PR Newswire (press release)
Fri, 10 May 2013 12:50:17 -0700
Consensus is beginning to build among retail SEM professionals that PLAs represent a huge revenue opportunity, particularly for Q4. Although SEMs likely have the basics for PLA and product feed management in place, the ability to target products at a ...
Thu, 16 May 2013 12:20:29 -0700
Create a product feed that is reusable on other marketplaces if possible. You should try to use the same feed structure and content for all marketplaces, even on Google's Product Listing ads. This will simplify your content preparation, though each one ...
Search Engine Journal
Fri, 26 Apr 2013 06:02:03 -0700
Treat the writing of titles in your product feed like you would a headline for PPC. Including keywords and your brand in the headline are always a good strategy for boosting CTR. Watch the length, though. While Google will allow 70-characters to be ...
Tue, 07 May 2013 11:09:28 -0700
If your product feed contains the same descriptions that are on your site, the marketplace could receive primary credit, and search engines could label you as a copycat. We've seen this scenario harm the rankings of hundreds of merchants. Dealing with ...
Fri, 10 May 2013 05:21:30 -0700
Make sure they offer tools that ensure items in your product feed can be pinned directly to Pinterest without requiring any intermediary steps, and that those feeds and their associated engagement can be accurately measured. While the advertising ...
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