Google has pushed to make online shopping less risky by introducing a badge scheme called Google Trusted Stores, which is free to use for both consumers and retailers.
Available in the US only for now, Google Trusted Stores is intended to increase shoppers' confidence, as stores have to offer a "great overall experience" to get the badge, Google Shopping group product manager Tom Fallows wrote in a blog post on Thursday.
"Shoppers tell us they're often nervous about buying from online stores they don't know. We created the free Google Trusted Stores programme to help solve this problem," Fallows said. "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."
When shoppers come across a retailer with one of these badges, they can hover over the symbol to see a 'report card' that lists grades for shipping and service. Fallows argued that this would benefit both shoppers and vendors who could show off good grades.
Fallows also noted that customers buying from one of these stores can get "$1,000 [£650] lifetime purchase protection per shopper" if they want, and that Google was offering a dedicated customer service team to help sellers and buyers work out disagreements.
The move, which follows a nine-month pilot, will see badges appearing on Google.com ads and in Shopping results, Fallows added.