Google aims to shine a spotlight on high-quality online stores to help shoppers find ones that offer compelling shopping experiences.
Slideshow: Top 15 Google Apps ForBusiness
(click image for larger view and for full slideshow)
To allay doubts about the legitimacy of the e-commerce sites, Google has announced a new program to highlight exemplary online merchants.
Google Trusted Stores aspires to help shoppers recognize online stores that offer compelling shopping experiences. The program is likely to be less contentious than Google's attempt to promote trust among members of its Google+ social network by requiring people to use their real names, though it may make competitors fret about the inexorable spread of Google branding onto third-party websites.
Google has begun admitting merchants into the program, which will require participating sites to share shipping and customer service data with Google and to meet Google's shipping and customer service standards.
Merchants that meet Google's standards will be allowed to display a badge on their websites that serves as a trust mark and attests to their ability to serve customers.
In order to continue displaying the badge, merchants must ship a high percentage of orders within the delay period specified at purchase and must maintain a low average for shipping time. Google has not disclosed specific threshold numbers for the program.
Shoppers at Google Trusted Stores will have the option of free purchase protection. Google, however, insists that this protection does not constitute a product warranty or endorsement and does not represent a form of insurance--a disclaimer probably designed to avoid regulation under consumer protection laws.
The purchase protection program allows customers to seek help from Google if a dispute arises. Google is offering up to $1,000 lifetime purchase protection for eligible purchases. The company describes its dispute resolution process on its website.
Merchants participating in the Google Trusted Stores pilot program include O.co, Wayfair, BabyAge.com, and Beach Audio. Google says that program badges may appear intermittently on these sites in order to test whether the program promotes shopping, as intended.
Google expects to admit more merchants into the program at a later date. Those interested can sign up online.
InformationWeek is conducting a survey on the state of business intelligence/analytics and information management deployments. We'd like to know about the successes and challenges you've had as well as your wish list of new BI/analytics capabilities you'd like to tap in the months and years ahead. Respond to the survey and be eligible to win an iPod Touch. Take the survey now. Survey ends Oct. 7.
Google in the Enterprise SurveyThere's no doubt Google has made headway into businesses: Just 28 percent discourage or ban use of its productivity products, and 69 percent cite Google Apps' good or excellent mobility. But progress could still stall: 59 percent of nonusers distrust the security of Google's cloud. Its data privacy is an open question, and 37 percent worry about integration.
Top IT Trends to Watch in Financial ServicesIT pros at banks, investment houses, insurance companies, and other financial services organizations are focused on a range of issues, from peer-to-peer lending to cybersecurity to performance, agility, and compliance. It all matters.
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of October 9, 2016. We'll be talking with the InformationWeek.com editors and correspondents who brought you the top stories of the week to get the "story behind the story."