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Google Certified Shops launch in the UK

Google has started a phased roll out of its ‘Google Certified Shops’ scheme across the UK, following considerable success in the US.

The scheme is designed to helpconsumers find online merchants that offer a consistently great customer experience, which includes excellent service and reliable dispatch.

How will Google certification for retailers work?

Qualifying retailers will be able to use the Google Certified Shops badge on their website, which promotes the fact Google believes they can trust this online store.

Source: http://www.google.co.uk/certifiedshops/images/cust-service.png

Source: http://www.google.co.uk/certifiedshops/images/cust-service.png

When a potential buyer hovers over the badge, they will be presented with helpful performance metrics, as well information about the free purchase protection Google themselves provide.

Source: http://www.google.co.uk/certifiedshops/images/cust-service.png

Source: http://www.google.co.uk/certifiedshops/images/cust-service.png

The Certified Shop logo will also appear in Google Shopping results, as they currently do within the US Trusted Store equivalent. Considering that PLA traffic has grown by over 600% globally year on year, according to Google, you can see just how powerful this trust metric will become.

Source: http://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/8535/pla_checkmark-blog-full.png

Source: http://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0003/8535/pla_checkmark-blog-full.png

Whilst there is no cost associated, there can be technical difficulties in securing the accreditation. The application for Trusted Stores in the US require applicants to be technically savvy, which could add a few months extra onto the application process. For many businesses, they will need to check with whoever develops their website, but we would expect most top developers have been ready and waiting to make this application process simpler.

 

Whilst applications are now being allowed to sign up for Google Certified Shops, a handful of sites have been selected to trial the scheme in the UK and have the badge live on their website:

Schuh

GHD

PhysioRoom

Rubbersole

 

Another interesting feature of Certified Shops is that the service allows buyers to track their purchases through their Google account. So to the average internet user, this seems like a very handy feature. However, on the other side of this coin Google will be able to record purchases against each of their account holders, which will lead to an unparalleled collection of ecommerce data. What they choose to do with this data is, of course, anyone’s guess. They could use it to further enhance Adwords Affinity Lists, for example, which would be hugely advantageous for us PPC Managers.

Source: Our own image

Source: Our own image

However, there are always going to be sceptics out there – some have even suggested that this new collection of data could in some way impact on organic rankings the future. 

Join the debate, do you think Certified Shops are a great tool for businesses to increase their ecommerce conversion rates? Or is it simply an excuse for Google to gather data on buying patterns which could in the future influence their algorithms?

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