If you are searching for google merchant account, you are probably looking for Google merchant account instead of Google merchant account. In a nutshell, a Google merchant account can refer to an account in Google Merchant Center, which lets you list your products on Google Shopping. On the other hand, there is no such thing as Google merchant account. The closest thing to that is Google Checkout which was retired already in Nov, 2013. If you are looking for a payment processor for your shopping cart, Google Wallet is now the closest thing. I am going to explain both of the above in more details below.
If you are running an e-commerce website, your customers can pay you from Google Wallet. They do it through the ‘Buy with Google’ button as seen in the picture below (taken from 2 major online retailers – newegg and rakuten).
Google Wallet is not really a payment processor though. It is just a Google service that lets users (buyers) save their credit card and personal information online. Whenever they want to buy something, checkout is just 2 clicks away. On the seller side, it’s called 2-Click Instant Buy API which can also work on Android and iOS. The API is a free service from Google that allows transfer of money from a Google wallet to your merchant account (payment processor). Therefore, you need a merchant account to use it. Details of what actually happens in a transaction are explained here.
Also seen in the above picture are the Visa Checkout and MasterPass buttons. They basically work the same way as the ‘Buy with Google’ button. They call their services (also free) online credit card, but it’s just the same thing with different names. All of them aim to bypass the lengthy checkout process for customer’s convenience as well as reducing cart abandonment (especially for mobile devices). I call them express checkout because they are practically competitors of Paypal Express.
Google Merchant Center
I guess you can call yourself a ‘Google merchant’ if your products are listed on Google Shopping (with a Google merchant account). Listing on Google Shopping is a powerful way of marketing your e-commerce website. The first time I used it (called ‘Google Base’ back then), I got quite a few sales in just a few days after I uploaded the product feed. Google did not favor eBay sellers at that time, for some reason (perhaps they did not want to give eBay feedback system recognition). Seller ratings are, according to my own experience, among the most important factors in ranking, if not the most important. (Obviously many sellers are on Google Shopping. So ranking well is crucial.) Accepting Google Checkout was also a favorite factor.
Getting a Google Merchant Center account is easy. With the account, all you need to do is to rearrange your product feed (if you are using for example, zen cart) to match Google Merchant Center spreadsheet template. It takes just minutes to upload 10s of thousands of items. An important thing is to update your product feed at least once a day. This tells Google that your business is serious and your inventory/pricing/product line change frequently. This implies your ‘importance,’ so to speak.
For more details about Google Merchant Center as well as other ways to promote your e-commerce business, see e-commerce marketing.
I hope the above explanations clarify a bit about google merchant account.