Google has launched Product Studio, a new tool that allows Google Shopping merchants to quickly edit and customize their product images for free using generative AI. Announced at Tuesday’s Google Marketing Live event, Product Studio will roll out to US-based sellers in the “next few months” and will be hosted by Merchant Center Next, the company’s redesigned platform for uploading and advertising products through Google Shopping.
Product Studio is designed to help sellers diversify the product and lifestyle images used in their e-commerce listings – something that can help them stand out against competing products but can be time-consuming to create or require expensive photography. According to Google’s own data, product listings with more than one image typically see a 76 percent increase in impressions and a 32 percent increase in clicks compared to listings with a single image.
Text prompts within Product Studio can be used to quickly make visual edits to product images, such as creating a selection of new backgrounds for seasonal campaigns. Product Studio also allows sellers to instantly remove an image’s existing background if they need a blank background, and increase the quality of small or low-resolution images.
earlier this month, CNBC It reported that Google was planning to use its new PaLM 2 AI language model to help companies create ads. Google hasn’t disclosed which model the AI Product Studio is built on, so it’s not clear if this new announcement is part of those efforts. In a statement to the edgeGoogle spokeswoman Molly Shaheen says it was designed using “one of Google’s text-to-image templates.”
Google says Product Studio was built for businesses of all sizes, although it would arguably be most useful to independent sellers and small businesses that don’t have the budget to pay in detailed image capture. That’s not to say Product Studio won’t appeal to larger companies who can afford to spend more on marketing materials, which could add more fuel to concerns about generative AI being used to replace creative professionals.
Product Studio isn’t a unique concept—many desktop and mobile apps have already launched tools that also use generative AI to customize product shots, like PhotoRoom’s Magic Studio. The Meta is also testing similar AI creation tools for advertisers under its recently announced AI Sandbox, and several graphic design apps like Canva and Adobe Express have released AI-powered features for removing backgrounds and creating objects. What Product Studio provides is convenience — if you’re already using Google Merchant Center, you can spice up your photos without jumping between platforms.
Google says that merchants who use the Google app and YouTube on Shopify will also have access to Product Studio features. The search giant is currently rolling out its streamlined Merchant Center Next platform (which will eventually replace Merchant Center) to new users and will start upgrading small businesses “over the coming months.” Google will notify merchants when the new experience becomes available and plans to complete the global rollout sometime in 2024.
Update May 23rd, 2:33PM ET: Updated to include a response from a Google spokesperson.
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