Each channel, whether it’s a marketing platform, marketplace, or anything else, will require a certain amount of product data to list a product.

These data requirements come in the form of product attributes or properties — like title, brand, price, etc. — that vary depending on the seller, channel, and platform.

If you look at a product data table, each column of values pertains to the attribute established at the top of the column.

product feed attribute column of data header label

A channel’s product feed specification, or feed spec, documents the range of product attributes that they accept — both required and optional. Platform feed specs differ from one another but they all overlap significantly, even if the attribute labels change.

Some examples of required attributes:

  • id: a unique string of letters and numbers used to identify individual items.
  • title: the product’s name.
  • price: the product’s price.
  • link: the URL of the product landing page on your website for buying the product.
  • image_link: the URL to the related image.

Not all product attributes are required, many are optional.

Some examples of optional attributes:

  • additional_image_link: the URL of an additional image for your product.
  • product_highlight: the most relevant highlights of your product.
  • sale_price: a product’s sale price.

That said, optional attributes shouldn’t be ignored.

The extent to which you detail your products is up to you, but more info allows for better customer experiences and in turn, better performance. Effective product data ensures products show up in the right place at the right time.

We’re all familiar with browsing, filtering, and searching for what we’re shopping for using product attributes.

product attributes in the form of filter options Google

Google product data specification

Google has one of the most detailed feed specs out there.

On this page you’ll find reference links to important policies and requirements, as well as definitions to help understand the documentation.

  • Product: describes the actual product that your potential customers would be searching for on Google.
  • Item: describes a product once it's been added to your product data, either in a text feed, XML feed, or API. For example, an item is one line in your text feed.
  • Variant: describes a product that comes in different variations. For example, a shirt that comes in different sizes has size variants.

The page goes on to list all the attributes they accept, down to the exact word those data columns need to reference.

For example, while some platforms may accept the term “name” to describe a product’s name or title, Google accepts the word “title.” So anytime you submit a feed to Google, your feed's title attribute needs to be labeled as “title”.

The full list tells you most of what you need to know about each individual attribute. The links on sidebar send you to dedicated attribute pages that give you an extended breakdown for each attribute.

Google groups all of these attributes by types:

  • Basic product data: the foundation for creating free listings and successful ads.
  • Price & availability: define the price and availability of your products.
  • Product category: used to organize your campaigns in Google Ads.
  • Product identifiers: identify the products you’re selling regionally and/or globally.
  • Detailed product description: define important product characteristics.
  • Shopping campaigns and other configurations: control how your product data is used in ad campaigns.
  • Destinations: control the different locations where your content can appear.
  • Shipping: used to provide accurate shipping costs.
  • Tax: used to provide accurate tax costs.

Amazon product data specification

Amazon’s feed specs are a little less public, you’ll need Amazon Seller Central access to view inventory file templates.

That said, the extended list is very much like the list of data that Google accepts. And while the groupings are different, Amazon also groups their attributes into types.

Amazon attribute types:

  • Required: the foundation for successful product listings and ads.
  • Images: provide links to product images.
  • Variation: documents product variation information.
  • Basic: foundational attributes that aren’t always required.
  • Discovery: properties that affect how customers find or discover products on Amazon.
  • Product enrichment: contribute to rich product listings.
  • Dimensions: specify the size and weight of a product.
  • Fulfillment: define fulfillment-related info for Amazon-fulfilled or seller-fulfilled orders.
  • Compliance: used to comply with consumer laws in the region/country of sale.
  • Offer: make items buyable to customers.
  • B2B: make items buyable to business customers.

Source product attributes in GoDataFeed

When you import your product data into GoDataFeed, you’ll need to map your source attributes to our system’s attributes in order to standardize your catalog.

Mapping your data to our standards lets you unify multiple data sources and then build and customize feeds for all of your marketing channels.

GoDataFeed has 19 standard attributes as well as room for up to 200 custom attributes.

godatafeed primary import source product attributes properties

You can set up anything in any way, to provide the range of customer experiences needed to effectively sell your products.

Continue to Product Feed Basics: Product Identifiers

The Google Shopping Optimization Handbook