How to create a XML feed for Facebook Catalog Manager

Create channel feeds to be used for your Facebook and Instagram marketing through the Facebook Catalog Manager

Creating A channel and defining the XML data format feed

If you are not familiar with how to create channels in Plytix, have a look at this article: Create a Channel

To work with the XML data format, have a look here: Define Data Format For XML Channels

Facebook Catalog Manager feed references

Follow the required and optional guidelines for your facebook Catalog Manager feed. Find additional information through the link by searching in their help center.

Setting up your Facebook feed in Plytix

In this example, we have loaded the attributes which are required by Facebook.

You will have to specialize your product information based on your industry and what content you deem fit to include for advertising your products.

Required attributes:

  • ID
  • Title
  • Description
  • Link
  • Image link
  • Brand
  • Availability
  • Condition
  • Price
  • GTIN

Attributes

These are the attributes we have added to the feed from the PIM (1). Don't worry about the names not conforming with the Facebook requirements, we will fix that at a later step.

Attributes-1

Products

Add a 'Product list' containing the products you want to include to your feed (1).

Products

Formatting the feed for Catalog Manager

Navigate to the format tab, to set up the feed so it conforms with the specifications set by facebook (1). With the loaded attributes and product list, the feed is already generated to include the attribute data for each product (2).

Formatting the catalog manager feed

Example feed for Facebook Catalog Manager

You can find additional information on facebooks help center, but we will continue by structuring our feed like this:

example feed for facebook catalog manager

Customizing the feed to fit Facebook specifications

The first part <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?> is automatically applied by the system.

Add and configure the rss node

Our first task is to add the rss node. We do that by clicking the '+ Add Node' button (1). We can then configure the node in the 'Settings' that pop up on the right side of the screen (2).

add and configure the rss node-1

We start by giving the 'Node Tag' its name, which we will call "rss"(1). Then we add the 2 additional node attributes (2):

  1. Attribute: xmlns:g value: http://base.google.com/ns/1.0
  2. Attribute: Version value: 2.0

Then we press the 'Save' button to add the note (3).

rss node-2

Channel

We now add a 'channel' node as a sub node to the rss node. We do this by selecting the 'Add subnode' icon on the rss node (1). The new node will be automatically created with rss as its parent node (2). We change the 'Node Tag' to channel (3). and press 'Save' (4).

channel-2

Adding title, link, and description as leaf nodes

We can now add 3 leaf nodes, as subnodes to channel. We select to add the nodes by clicking the 'Add subnode' button on the channel node (1). We add 'Node tag's for each of the subnodes (2), and select to activate the node as a leafnode (3). This provides us with a value field that we can fill out for each subnode (4). Don't mind the 'LEAF' text in front of your subnode values, they will not be included in the feed.

adding title, link, and description as leaf nodes-1

Modifying your Products / Items

As you have maybe noticed in the examples above, the hierarchy level for the 'products' and 'product' nodes are not conforming to the specifications in the example feed. So we have to go in to the settings of 'products', by clicking the settings icon (1) and change its 'Parent node' to Channel (2) to move both nodes under channels hierarchy.

modifying your products  items-1

Items

Within the PIM system, Products are called "products", but for facebook a product is called "Item". Therefore we must change the output name from "product" to "item". We do that by clicking the purple nodes option icon(1). Then we change the 'Node Tag' to "item"(2).

Item tag

What Facebook does, is to list all their items one after the other, and not within an overall "Items" hierarchy lvl. So we actually have to delete the 'Products' node that all our items currently are within. We do that by clicking the red 'X' next to the Node (1).

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 10.16.20-1

Our item node now got moved up a hierarchy level as the Products node got deleted, and we can now see that our feed content and hierarchy is starting to look a lot like what facebook wants it to look like:

Comparison hierachy

Changing the individual attributes

We can now start changing our attribute 'Node Tags' so they match with Facebook's naming convention. We need to change their names to this:

SKU = g:id, Label = g:title, Description = g:description, product landing page = g:link, Hero Image = g:image_link, Brand = g:brand, Availability = g:availability, Condition = g:condition, Price = g:price, GTIN = g:gtin

We add this change by clicking the option icons for our attribute nodes individually (1), and then change their 'Node Tags' (2), and a preview of the output name will display below the attribute names (3).

changing the individual attributes-1

Completed feed

Our feed is now completed. All our necessary data is there. Our hierarchy levels are in order, and naming conventions are adjusted for Facebook. Here is a comparison from what Facebook needs, how it looks like in the feed builder, and how the output looks like in the preview for our feed:

completed feed-1

Processing

Click the 'PROCESS NOW' button at the top right of the page (1), and select the link that becomes available to your feed (2). Copy the link and apply it to your Facebook Catalog Manager.

Processing-1