The Good Guide is an ethical product search portal. The idea is you can search for ratings, information and discussion on products that interest you to see just how environmentally and socially aware they are. We’re not just talking a few facts here, but a comprehensive overview of the company that makes the product, it’s ecological, social and environmental standing and where you can buy.
The amount of detail per product is very impressive, from the single page you will gather everything you need to learn in order to feel comfortable or otherwise about a purchase. The user reviews are icing on the cake.
The service is provided by a ‘for benefit’ organisation which straddles the line between commercial and non-profit motivations, so there’s also integrity involved in the project, which is essential for gaining people’s trust. Over 60,000 products are currently covered, and we really like the attention to detail on the site, although it is of course totally USA focussed.
It would be nice to see our governments taking a lead on this role to provide us with more accessible and valuable information on the products we use every day, so we could make more informed choices about where we want to spend our money.
The main problem services like this face, of course, is keeping it top of mind when we consumers are about to make buying decisions. Price search is the usual starting point, and it’s going to be hard for most people to remember or bother to check with this guide to see about the important impact of their choice before they go ahead and buy. Some type of connection needs to be made with the major online and offline retailers (maybe a Good Guide Charter Mark on the product itself or something?) which reminds us of the score. But apart from that this is a great start towards helping us all be a bit more responsible for the effects of our consumption.
GoodGuide strives to provide the world’s largest and most reliable source of information on the health, environmental, and social impacts of products and companies. GoodGuide’s mission is to help you find safe, healthy, and green products that are better for you and the planet. From our origins as a UC Berkeley research project, GoodGuide has developed into a totally independent “For-Benefit” company. We are committed to providing the information you need to make better decisions, and to ultimately shifting the balance of information and power in the marketplace.