Google Tries to Make You Spend More
Google is working to make online shoppers who are reluctant to part with personal information a little more comfortable, using a vetting system and an online badge.
Friday, Jun 8, 2012 Updated at 4:44 PM PDT
Leave it to Google to find another way to promote shopping online -- by creating its Trusted Stores Program.
The new program is Google's attempt to make "nervous" buyers calmer about parting with their credit card numbers on an anonymous site. From Tom Fallows, product manager for Google Shopping on the Official Google blog:
When shoppers see the Google Trusted Store badge, they know in a snap they’re shopping with a reputable retailer and they can feel confident making an informed purchase. . . . This badge is only awarded to online stores that deliver a great overall experience, so even if you haven’t shopped with this merchant before, you can easily tell if they are trustworthy, ship quickly and reliably, and offer exceptional customer service. If there’s a problem with your purchase, we’re here to help.
Google said it will now act as mediator between merchant and consumer, including offering shoppers an opt-in $1,000 lifetime purchase protection plan for no charge.
What's interesting about the badge is that it's not just a symbol of honor, but gives stats
on how long the merchant takes to ship its goods, its percentage of on-time shipping and rates its customer service. Businesses are granted grades based on how well it does these things, with an "A" meaning excellent.
In many ways, the program does give some value to online shoppers -- but it's unlikely that some online vendors in direct competition with Google may not be handed a Google Trusted Store badge.