Create a Microsoft Windows Live Product Feed

As I promised last week, here are step by step instructions for creating a free MSN’s Live Product Search feed.

In case you are not sure what a Live Search Product Feed is, we will prepare a list of items to include in Microsoft’s product search engine.

Live Search

  1. First you will need an Windows Live account, which will also give you
  • A Hotmail e-mail address good for using in irritating forms when you would rather not receive Spam.
  • A Windows Live ID, required to sign into your Windows Live account.

Once you sign-up and navigate to Product Search, you can set your contact e-mail to an Alternate ID e-mail address.

  1. Next you wil have to re-format your Google Products Feed document that you made last week into Microsoft’s preferred format.
    MS actually has a terrific section in their Help Center on accomplishing this.
  • Open your Google Products Excel document (not the txt). Change the category headings to the following:

MSN Attributes

  • Make sure your columns are organized with  these headings (no spaces or special characters) in this exact order:
  1. offername
  2. actionurl
  3. regularprice
  4. referenceimageurl
  5. offerdescription.

Live Excel

  • Save as a (.txt) file.
  1. Go to your Product Upload page.
  • On the Catalogs page click "create new."
  • Fill in all required fields- catalog title, select category and select file type (Product Search Text)

The file type Google Base compatible format (.txt) has yet to work for me, I always select the Product Search txt and "Tab" as the delimiter, despite that the document is exactly a Google Base document. You’re welcome to try and see if it’ll work for you!

 Live Product Upload - Catalog Setup.png

  • Select "upload through browser" Enter a catalog description (1000 characters or less).
  • Save.


  1. Next you will upload your file.
  • Click "Upload Now."
  • Choose the txt file you created.
  • Click "Upload"
  • Click "Done."
  • Go back to the main catalogs tab where you will see your new feed under the status of "Processing." Processing can take anywhere from 5mins to 36hrs.
  •  Once you see "Published" in the status, you’re done!
  1. Check your Windows Live Feed for errors.
  • After your file is published to re-visit the catalog details in case of errors.
  • Click on the catalog name from the main menu.
  • If there are any "Catalog Upload Errors" you’ll see them towards the bottom.

 Live Errors

Once the file is published you may find that some listings get thrown back for various errors. Microsoft is smart enough to segment out the error ridden entries and leave the good entries intact and searchable. Windows Live will list each specific error and suggest how to remedy the situation.

That’s all for now!

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