We have two pieces of exciting news that have come out in the past 24 hours that your business should be taking advantage of. First, Facebook is now accepting applications for their small business grants program which is giving $100 million in cash grants and ad credits to small businesses negatively impacted by COVID-19. Second, Google just announced that its Google Shopping tab will consist primarily of free product listings, helping merchants better connect with consumers, regardless of whether they advertise on Google or not, and today we’re bringing you everything we know:
What We Know – Details on Free Facebook Advertising
Facebook is now accepting applications for its Small Business Grants Program.
Right now, Facebook is accepting applications from businesses in New York City, Seattle, and the San Francisco Bay Area with more eligible U.S. cities opening on April 22nd.
As part of this program Facebook will be giving away $100 million in cash grants and ad credits to eligible small businesses negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. What is an eligible small business?
Eligible businesses must:
- The business must be a for-profit company
- The business must have between 2 and 50 employees
- The business must have been in operation for more than one year
- The business must have been negatively affected by COVID-19
- The business must be located in a city where Facebook operates
During the application process, applicants will also be required to provide the following documents:
- Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN)
- Partnership documents
- Business license
- Proof of incorporation
- Official registration
How to apply: Visit the Facebook Small Business Grants Program website at: https://www.facebook.com/business/boost/grants?content_id=y1zmXnGuMBYk3l6
What We Know – Details on Free Google Shopping
In a blog post early this morning, Google made a major announcement:
The retail sector has faced many threats over the years, which have only intensified during the coronavirus pandemic. With physical stores shuttered, digital commerce has become a lifeline for retailers. And as consumers increasingly shop online, they’re searching not just for essentials but also things like toys, apparel, and home goods. While this presents an opportunity for struggling businesses to reconnect with consumers, many cannot afford to do so at scale.
In light of these challenges, we’re advancing our plans to make it free for merchants to sell on Google. Beginning next week, search results on the Google Shopping tab will consist primarily of free product listings, helping merchants better connect with consumers, regardless of whether they advertise on Google. With hundreds of millions of shopping searches on Google each day, we know that many retailers have the items people need in stock and ready to ship, but are less discoverable online.
For retailers, this change means free exposure to millions of people who come to Google every day for their shopping needs. For shoppers, it means more products from more stores, discoverable through the Google Shopping tab. For advertisers, this means paid campaigns can now be augmented with free listings. If you’re an existing user of Merchant Center and Shopping Ads, you don’t have to do anything to take advantage of the free listings, and for new users of Merchant Center, we’ll continue working to streamline the onboarding process over the coming weeks and months.
For shoppers, this will make the Google Shopping experience much more complete with a wider selection of products helping smaller retailers compete with major online retailers like Amazon. It will also present a huge opportunity for online retailers large and small.
If you have an online store and you don’t have your products listed on Google Shopping, today is a great day to start that process!