Greenzer – a new shopping engine focused on green goods I briefly talked about some weeks ago – has launched its public beta. It has all the “design patterns” of a classic CSE (full-text search ; navigation per product; filtering to refine selection; product pages with offers…), but what makes it different is the editorial choice to choose products, and a green rating per product entitled “greenzer score”. According to the FAQ and the About Us pages, products are chosen according to four criterias:
From some of those criterias, a score is compute to rank the “greenness” of products:
The Greenzer Score is an algorithm that leverages ratings and certifications from third party groups that we believe to be the most thorough and relevant sources of information in their respective fields. Products listed on Greenzer have met our minimum green filtering criteria so low scoring products are still green products. Click on the little green information button on any Greenzcore icon to find out more about how it works. […] The Greenzer Score aggregates leading data sources of environmental performanc, information, and statistics on a variety of products and brands. Each score takes into account ratings and certifications related to both the product itself as well as the brand of the product. We aggregate the ratings and certifications from these third parties to create a 1-10 score for products in a given category.
The Greenzer Score is clearly the innovation brought by Greenzer, compared to other green CSEs (i.e: like TheFindGreen). It gives an easy way to appreciate the environmental quality of a product, with an “objective” and well explained rating.
However, it’s not clear for me how merchants are chosen. If Greenzer is a paid CSE for merchants, it may be difficult for Greenzer to rank products in such a way the greenest products are highlighted and merchants are happy with the service.