We’ve made significant progress in how we shop for things like groceries in person. At the store, we read labels and ingredient lists and look for the brands that we know do business in an ethical and sustainable way. We vote with our wallets because we know that’s the best way to reach the decision makers behind the products we love.
But, traditionally, finding the most altruistic brands to shop from online has been more work. Often, the information is there (ethical practices mission statement, sustainability clause, etc), but it usually takes some digging to find. A new extension for Chrome called DoneGood, however, is making it easier to identify and shop those brands that have proven to be, well, good.
As their homepage puts it, “The DoneGood browser extension makes it easy to discover businesses on a mission to make the world better.” This might mean that these companies produce their goods in a sustainable manner, thus helping to preserve the environment; or maybe they’re particularly good to their employees; or perhaps their fair trade policy is superior to the big-brand competition.
“You vote with your wallet everyday,” one of the founders of DoneGood, Cullen Schwarz, told Wired. “It’s a supply and demand economy, so the more we demand sustainable and ethical business practices, the more the market will supply that.”
It’s pretty user friendly, too, which is really the whole point. Yes, doing the right thing can be super simple. Just download it (they also have an app, obv), shop like you normally would, and then, if the extension recognizes that there’s a ethical, sustainable company selling what you’re searching for, it’ll send you an alert to the corner of your screen.
Consider it like your digital shopping conscience, there to warn you away from brands that might not have the best practices and point you toward those that, like you, want to make the world a better place.
In the heavily competitive (read expensive) world of online advertising, the app helps responsible businesses—which are normally small or modest in size with a budget reflective of that—to compete against big brands with big money to spend on things like SEO.
It’s a sizeable step in the right direction, if you ask us. It’s not like, by downloading the tech, you’re forced to always buy from the “good” brand—hey, sometimes you just gotta save—but wouldn’t it be nice to at least have the option to do some good while you shop online?