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Google Shopping to change formats, charge merchants

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It's just about closing time for Google Shopping's free merchant listings. The iconic search engine has traditionally shown us products regardless of a commercial relationship with sellers, but they'll be required to fork over some coin if they want to join the party after the fall. Currently called Google Product Listings, the platform's name and format have evolved several times since the Froogle days. Google says the older model can lead to some shady and obsolete info, whereas charging vendors will "encourage them to keep their product information fresh and up to date." New shopping formats are already being tested with a small population of users and include bigger pics and the ability to fine tune the search based on brand or product type. As the song goes, every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end.

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