Publitas, Google Catalogs replacement

May 29, 2015 by Joost Buijs

Google logo and Publitas logo

Google is set to fully discontinue Google Catalogs on August 4 (Note: now extended to August 12), 2015, meaning that by then, all material published with Google Catalogs will be taken offline. We decided to step in and help brands migrate from Google Catalogs to Publitas.

As Google has not yet made a public announcement, here’s a small excerpt from the mail that they sent to all Google Catalogs users:

“The Google Catalogs publishing service will be permanently discontinued on August 4, 2015, with any published material or embedded hosted material remaining live until this time. However, support will end on May 4, 2015. This includes assistance with catalog creation, help with website embedding, and answering other support related questions.”

With Google Catalogs no longer supporting the creation of new catalogs, many brands previously using the service are now left without their online catalogs. One of the issues for these brands moving forward is that they can no longer create new catalogs, unless they find an alternative solution. Another issue is that they will lose their current catalog archives in August.

Working with some of the largest retail brands in the world for the past 8 years, we know how important online catalogs are to a retailer's business. The catalog is one of the best expressions of their brand and often accounts for a significant part of total sales. So when we heard that Google Catalogs would be discontinued, we knew we could help and decided to provide an exclusive service for brands using Google Catalogs. This service allows these brands to easily migrate their existing catalogs (so they can keep them online) and gives them the tools to create beautiful, new catalogs going forward.

Why Publitas is a suitable replacement

Speaking to some of the brands that have already switched from Google Catalogs, we're confident that Publitas is a suitable replacement and that we can help other brands as well. Here’s why:

Product hotspots

One of the things that makes Publitas stand out in regards to being a Google Catalogs alternative is that we offer product hotspots. Product hotspots are exactly like the product annotations that Google Catalogs offers and we’ve made it easy to migrate any Google Catalog to Publitas, including all product annotations. Product hotspots are a valuable part of our offering, as they allow retailers to sell directly from their online catalogs.

Google Shopping Feed specifications

Another reason why Publitas is a unique replacement for Google Catalogs is that we are the only service supporting exactly the same Google Shopping Feed specifications. There’s little change required from the brands using Google Catalogs to switch over to Publitas and to start publishing brand new publications. The Google Shopping Feed saves a lot of time when tagging products in any new catalogs that are being published and it would be a big loss if the product feed would no longer be available to the brands that are switching over.

Improved mobile experience

With Publitas we’ve made sure that online publications work and look great on mobile devices. Compare this with any catalog published with Google - that has no dedicated mobile view - and it’s easy to see how we provide an improvement here.

P.S. We've set up a landing page for Google Catalogs brands looking to switch, so feel free to have a look at that for more information.

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