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GoodGuide’s Transparency Toolbar

I’ve worked with many health and wellness brands and I know how important it is for customers to be aware of their quality ingredients and their hard work to create safe products. Consumer awareness of what’s in these products is vital to each brand’s mission and to their bottom line as businesses. When I saw the GoodGuide Transparency Toolbar this weekend, I was immediately fascinated.

Though “instantly shop your values when shopping online” is a bit too judge-y for my tastes, I do think that your ability to install this toolbar in your browser and see a rating on products as you shop is an interesting concept and one I suspect we’ll see a lot more of very soon.

Yet a cool transparency tool is only as good as the data that’s behind it, so I’m pleased to at least have a glimpse of who’s behind the data-crunching that you benefit from when checking out the tool:

“Led by Professor Dara O’Rourke of UC Berkeley, GoodGuide’s science team – chemists, toxicologists, nutritionists, sociologists, and lifecycle analysis experts – rates products and companies on their health, environmental and social performance. GoodGuide’s 0 to 10 rating system helps consumers quickly evaluate and compare products. Our mission is to help you shop your values wherever you shop.”

Wondering about who’s funding this effort? Me too:

“GoodGuide is funded by several prominent venture capital funds, including New Enterprise Associates, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Physic Ventures.  GoodGuide earns revenue from companies that purchase advertising and business intelligence products.  Neither our investors nor our paying business customers have the ability to influence GoodGuide ratings.  Our business customers want to communicate with the influential consumers who use GoodGuide for shopping advice, so GoodGuide offers ads that allow a company to promote its sustainability program (example) or to obtain priority placement for a product as a high scoring alternative on competing product pages (example).  Advertising content is always clearly marked as “sponsored.”  Our clients also buy business intelligence reports that compare their performance with competitors across a comprehensive set of health, environmental and social metrics and provide data on what metrics matter most to consumers.”

I’ve been using the iPhone app and I’m digging it. I’ve installed the transparency bar and so far, I’m digging it too. You?

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