- Tackling product imagery with its latest retail tool, Google on Tuesday introduced Product Studio, which uses generative AI to help businesses create and alter images, according to an announcement.
- Sellers can use Product Studio to create new backdrops for their product images, remove distracting backgrounds and improve image resolution. The tools will be available to sellers on Google’s Merchant Center Next platform and via the Google and YouTube app on Shopify.
- Google is also updating its merchant center to make establishing a product feed easier. Through Merchant Center Next, sellers’ product feeds will automatically populate with product information pulled from their websites, including prices, descriptions and other details.
Google’s Product Studio tool aims to help businesses generate more product imagery, which can be time-consuming and costly.
With Product Studio’s photo editing features, businesses can use Google’s artificial intelligence technology to alter images to fit different scenarios “whether seasonal, campaign-based or simply experimental — without the added cost of new photoshoots,” Matt Madrigal, vice president and general manager of merchant shopping at Google, wrote in a blog post. “For example, a skincare company could highlight a special seasonal version of a product by requesting an image of the product ‘surrounded by peaches, with tropical plants in the background.’”
With the updates to Google’s merchant center, sellers no longer have to manually add details such as product descriptions, pricing and images. Merchants that sell both online and in physical stores will now be able to see all products in one view to simplify inventory management. The merchant center updates are already available to new users, and Google will upgrade smaller businesses in the coming months. The company expects that the updates will be complete for sellers internationally by next year, and it will notify businesses once the tools are available.
Google has focused heavily on enhancing its shopping capabilities in recent years. In March 2022, the tech behemoth unveiled a Retail Search tool to match shoppers with more accurate search results while shopping online. Later that year, Google updated its search shopping experience to provide more products, brands, articles and videos in users’ search results when they used the word “shop” and to integrate filters based on size, color and other characteristics.
Artificial intelligence is cropping up in Google’s other efforts as well. Google announced earlier this month that it is piloting generative AI in search, which would reshape its e-commerce and advertising functionality. In January, Google announced that Google Cloud had implemented AI-driven technology to let retailers use imagery to track products on store shelves automatically. Last November, the company also modified its shopping search function to display the best prices across various retailers, including promotion badges for discounted products, a coupon clipping feature and a side-by-side price comparison tool.