Google launched its newest program, taking the security of your online purchases to a new level.  The Google Trusted Stores Program evaluates online stores according to two basic, yet exceedingly important, criteria – shipping time and quality of customer service.

Merchants who wish to join the program must submit data to Google pertaining to previous transactions that shed light on how timely their shipments are made, how quickly they handle issues with their customers, and how many issues there are with their customers in general.  Google then assigns them a grade for shipping and customer service based on how many transactions they were able to evaluate.

Trusted Stores Report Card

If a merchant qualifies, they  then display the Google Trusted Stores program badge on each page of their website.  When a user scrolls over the badge, the badge expands to display the grade for both shipping time and customer service as well as the amount of transactions on which both grades were based.  Google then continues to monitor applicable sites to ensure that their “performance metrics” are being upheld.

Google also offers optional Purchase Protection as an added benefit to consumers.  Free of charge and available only at time of purchase, this service helps customers resolve issues with a vendor and, if needed, may even cover entire purchase amounts, including taxes and shipping.  To be sure that your transaction is protected, check Google’s eligibility and limitations on their site http://www.google.com/trustedstores.com.

Google has finally addressed an issue that many modern consumers encounter – how can I trust the company offering the product that I need?  With little in the way of monitoring the trustworthiness and quality of service of many online businesses, Google’s approach sets a bar that will quell the anxieties of many an online shopper.

What are your thoughts about the Google Trusted Stores program? Do you think it compares with other trust seals and programs such as BuySafe?


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