Google Trusted Stores is a new e-commerce-related pilot program the company is testing to improve shopping for consumers-and collect more data on merchants.
Just in time
for the busy holiday shopping season, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Commerce team Oct.
3 said it is testing Trusted Stores, a program to help shoppers pick the best
e-commerce vendors from whom to buy things online.
complaints from consumers who say they're wary of buying goods from online
stores they've never patronized, Google is giving special badges to e-commerce
Websites that show they can provide excellent customer service and ship goods
in a timely fashion.
participants include O.co, Wayfair, BabyAge.com and Beach Audio. Consumers can
expect to see more partners for this program in the future.
Here's how it
works. When a consumer visits a "qualifying store" online, they can
hover over the Trusted Store badge and see metrics on the store's shipping and
customer service performance. Google shows how the metrics are rendered by a badge in this
companies can join Google Trusted Stores by agreeing to share info about
shipments. Google in turn collects customer service metrics when shoppers seek
Google's help with a problem.
If a problem
arises with their purchase, shoppers can tap Google for help and Google will
serve as the go-between for the merchant and customer as it mitigates the
a shopper buys something from a Google Trusted Store, they may select up to
$1,000 in free purchase protection from Google. If there is a problem with one
of the retailers, users will receive some financial protection.
clearly ramping up its commerce efforts. There is a lot of money to be made in
online shopping, and Google increasingly wants to be at the warm, fuzzy center
of that experience for consumers, to whom it may serve more retail-related ads.
One way to
support this effort is to have more data about companies at its disposal. At
least, that's a theory. Google isn't owning up to any advertising connection
for Trusted Stores.
Google told Search Engine Land
there was no connection between the certification program and Google AdWords,
but no final decision has been made whether to sprinkle some of the magic ad
pixie dust onto the new pilot.
suspects Google may use the e-tailer data in the future to provide its own
ratings and recommendation Website that consumers could access from their desktops and mobile phones.