Dealership matching

Overview

Google attempts to match your dealership data with Business Profiles on Google. After the dealership data is associated with a Business Profile, the cars for sale inventory that meets our product requirements will be eligible to show on Google.

The following information from the inventory feeds is used to perform dealership matching:

  • Store code1
  • Dealership name and postal address
  • (Preferred)2 Google Place ID
  • Google Maps URL

Please see the Feed Specification for more detail.

Dealership eligibility requirements

The following criteria must be met in order for matching to be successful:

How does it work?

Each store code from the feed is matched to exactly one Business Profile using one of the methods described below. Multiple store codes may be matched to the same Business Profile. It is not possible to match one store code to multiple Business Profiles.

(1) Using Google Place IDs

Place IDs uniquely identify a Business Profile on Google. If specified in the feed, the dealership will be directly matched to the given profile. This is the preferred method for dealership matching. If not specified, the matching will be performed using the dealership name and postal address (see below). You can submit Place IDs in your feed following the Feed Specification.

How to find Place IDs?

Use the instructions on the Google Maps Developer Site to find the Place ID for a particular dealership. Make sure the business category is car_dealer.

(2) Using Google Maps URLs

Similar to Place IDs, Maps URLs uniquely identify a Business Profile on Google. Unlike Place IDs, there are several different URL formats that are not all supported for dealership matching. Example of supported links:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Googleplex/@37.4219999,-122.0840575,15z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0x6c296c66619367e0

Example of unsupported links:

https://goo.gl/maps/Sda1ubveK2WVC3E3A
https://www.google.com/search?q=Googleplex

How to find Maps URLs?

To identify the correct URL, begin your search with Google Maps. Starting with Google Search and then entering Google Maps is incorrect, and may return a URL that is not supported.

  1. Search for the dealership name and address on Google Maps
  2. If multiple places are returned, select the dealership’s listing
  3. Copy the full URL from your browser

Make sure the business category is car_dealer.

(3) Using dealership name and postal address

The dealership information from the feed is matched against the Google Maps database to find the corresponding Business Profile. The automated matching system will canonicalize the postal address and can tolerate some differences in the name, but minor differences can matter. For best performance, make sure the name and address are complete and match the information on Google. You can provide name and postal address in your feed following the Feed Specification.

How long does it take to match a new dealership?

Dealership matching is an automated process and it usually takes a few hours to see the status on the Cars Onboarding Portal from the time the dealership information was submitted to Google. It will take additional processing time for the cars for sale inventory to go live.

Which Business Profile is matched to a dealership?

The Dealership summary table on the Cars Onboarding Portal shows the Place ID of the matched Business Profile and the corresponding store codes. The Place ID links to the Business Profile page on Google Search.

Dealership summary table

If a dealership is not matched to a Business Profile, its status will be Inactive and the Reason field may provide additional information.

How to fix matching problems?

Dealership is not matched

If a dealership is not matched to a Business Profile, it will not be eligible for the cars for sale program. A few common reasons for no matches are:

  • Dealership name and/or address is different between the feed and Google:
    • For example, the address in the feed is incomplete (missing the Postal Code).
    • Recommendations:
      • Use Place IDs to directly match the dealership to the correct profile.
      • Ensure the information provided in the feed matches the information on Google.

Dealership is matched to the wrong Business Profile

Incorrect matches may result in cars for sale inventory to show for the wrong dealership. A few common reasons for bad matches are:

  • The dealership information is ambiguous and matches more than one Business Profile:
    • For example, Ford Kia Lincoln of New York is actually three separate Business Profiles with distinct names that all share the same address.
    • Recommendations:
      • Use Place IDs to directly match the dealership to the correct profile.
      • Ensure the information provided in the feed matches the information on Google.
  • The same store code has conflicting dealership information:
    • For example, a group of dealerships share the same account with the data provider. The account number is used as the store code for all dealerships in the group.
    • Recommendations:
      • Ensure all dealerships (storefronts) have a unique store code in the feed.

Dealership is claimed by another partner

Please see the Dealership provider choice help article.

Can Google manually fix a match?

While we strive to automatically find the best matches for the dealerships you submit, we are aware there are cases when no matches are found. At this time we are not able to provide a way to manually match dealerships. Please follow the process described in this document to improve the matching performance and feel free to reach out to your Google representative for assistance.

If a dealership was incorrectly matched and Google should stop showing the cars for sale inventory immediately, please contact cars-for-sale-partners@google.com to disable the program for the dealership.

Notes


  1. Store codes don’t actually affect matching and can be any identifiers (for example, internal account numbers). 

  2. This is the preferred method of matching dealerships to their business profiles as it removes all ambiguity. 

  3. The profile may have multiple business categories, one of which must be car_dealer. 

  4. As of June 2021, the cars for sale program is only available in the US.