By Neil Patel
Trust is everything.
If you can’t earn consumers’ trust, you’re fighting a losing battle.
And what’s a specific area that makes many consumers wary?
That’s simple. It’s the way in which businesses handle payment information.
In fact, a lack of trust in credit card processing is one of the top reasons for checkout abandonment.
Research from the Baymard Institute found that “18% of American shoppers abandon the checkout because they don’t trust the website with their credit card information.”
This means you can kiss one out of every five shoppers goodbye.
And I totally get it.
I completely understand why some shoppers feel uncomfortable sharing their credit card information.
Identity theft and cyber crime are on the rise. This is people’s money and identity we’re talking about! I don’t blame people for being super cautious.
A study from Javelin Strategy & Research found that identity fraud hit a record high in 2016.
$16 billion was stolen from 15.4 million U.S. consumers in 2016, compared with $15.3 billion and 13.1 million victims a year earlier.
In the past six years, identity theft thieves have stolen over $107 billion.
Here’s what that looks like in graphs:
It has become a serious problem.
If you haven’t been the victim of identity theft yourself, there’s a good chance you know someone who has.
Just look at the increase in the number of identity theft and fraud complaints between 2012 and 2015:
This means one thing.
Most people don’t want to hand over their credit card information to just anyone.
They want to know for sure that the company they’re doing business with is taking every possible security precaution to ensure that their sensitive information doesn’t wind up in the wrong hands.
And I definitely understand where they’re coming from.
I know I avoid doing business with any website that looks sketchy and where security could be a potential issue.
In fact, I’ve found myself abandoning the checkout page several times on account of this.
It’s just not worth the risk.
How can you gain the trust of your online shoppers?
This puts modern business owners in a bit of a quandary.
You need to come up with an effective way to put shoppers’ minds at ease and let them know they’re in good hands when they do business with you.
What can you do?
There are several factors that shoppers take into consideration when determining whether or not they trust a particular website.
Some examples include:
- How professional the site looks
- How quickly it loads
- Whether a trusted friend or colleague has used the site before
- Whether the site contains well-known brands or products
- Whether it has easy-to-find contact information
But there’s one factor that reassures shoppers above all else.
And that’s a trust seal.
a survey conducted by Econsultancy/Toluna confirmed the power of trust seals when it asked participants which factors help them to decide whether or not to trust a website.
Just think about it.
How many times have you had your fears or doubts quelled when you saw a trust seal when you’re checking out?
I know this puts me at ease.
And there’s evidence that shows just how big of an impact trust seals can have.
Research on trust seals
This great article from ConversionXL tackles the topic of checkout optimization and the way trust seals affect security perception.
The post includes data from a study that used eye tracking to determine the exact impact trust seals have.
Here’s a screenshot of what this study entailed:
Participants then saw one of the following six trust seals:
As you can see, there are trust seals from several notable companies such as McAfee, PayPal, the BBB, and so on.
And here are the observational patterns (the patterns respondents’ eyes followed):
By examining these findings, it’s easy to see that trust seals are huge.
After shoppers initially look at the logo and “payment method” section, their eyes inevitably shift to the trust seal at the bottom.
This goes to show that it’s an integral factor in whether a shopper decides to go through with the checkout process and actually make a purchase.
It makes sense that displaying a trust seal on your checkout page will increase trust, thereby boosting your conversion rate.
Are some trust seals more trusted than others?
You may be wondering whether shoppers respond more favorably to certain trust seals than others.
This chart shows us the specifics:
As you can see, the “PayPal Verified” seal was noticed the most, at 67%.
This was followed by the “Google Trusted Store” seal at 63% and “Norton Secured” seal at 59%.
It’s also important to note that survey respondents remembered certain trust seals more than others:
However, ConversionXL reports that the differences were fairly minimal.
According to them,
it’s clear that there weren’t huge differences between trust seals. Using eye tracking, we confirmed that all trust seals are equally noticeable.
In other words, it doesn’t make a massive difference which specific trust seal you use.
As long as you have one from a fairly reputable company, it should have a positive impact in terms of gaining the trust of your shoppers.
If you haven’t yet installed a trust seal on your checkout page, I highly recommend that you do so immediately.
This can have a tremendous impact on your conversion rate and overall revenue.
Look no further than a split test performed by Blue Fountain Media.
Here’s what their original checkout page looked like before they added a trust seal:
Here’s their checkout page with a Verisign seal:
Guess what impact this had?
Sales increased by a whopping 42%!
Notice that nothing else on the page changed—except for the “Your Privacy” section, which got replaced by the Verisign seal.
This isn’t to say that your sales will instantly jump up by 42%, but I can pretty much guarantee some type of increase.
Just imagine what a trust seal could do for your long-term profits—it could be major.
How do you create a trust seal?
Here’s how the general process works.
Of course, this is an oversimplification of things, so let me walk you through the process step by step.
I’ll just use McAfee as an example because I’m familiar with it.
The specific steps may vary slightly depending on the security company you choose, but the overall process should be basically the same.
Step #1 – Sign up
Visit McAfee SECURE to check out plans and pricing.
In the case of McAfee, it’s very straightforward.
There are two plans to choose from: “Free” and “Pro.”
Here’s how the two plans break down:
FYI, “Pro” costs $29 per month as I’m writing this.
Next, install the McAfee SECURE plugin on WordPress.
You can find it by searching the “Plugins” section of your WordPress dashboard:
Click on “Add New:”
Now type in “McAfee” in the “Search Plugins” search box:
Here we go:
Click on “Install Now:”
Once you’ve activated the plugin, visit Settings > McAfee Secure to configure it.
You’ll see this screen:
Fill out the information:
At this point, McAfee will run some tests on your site:
Because you’ve already installed the McAfee SECURE plugin, the trust seal will automatically appear on your site.
It’s really quite easy.
As long as your website passes, you’ll have a trust seal installed on your checkout page in no time.
If you would like to see a video tutorial on this process, check out this post from WPBeginner.
Online security has arguably never been more important than it is today.
And the fear and skepticism so many people have is by no means unfounded.
They have a very good reason to be concerned and even a little paranoid.
As a business owner, you must address these concerns and put your customers’ minds at ease.
People want to know they’re not putting themselves at unnecessary risk by completing a transaction on your website.
According to research, one of the best ways to do this is by installing a trust seal on your checkout page.
This lets shoppers know that your site has been thoroughly tested and meets today’s security standards.
As a result, they can complete a purchase with confidence, which should bring about a higher conversion rate and an overall increase in customer satisfaction.
Fortunately, installing a trust seal on your checkout page is fairly simple, and some basic plans can be set up for free.
Find the security company that’s the best fit for you and complete the necessary steps to have a trust seal installed.
How big of a factor is a trust seal when you’re deciding whether you want to complete a transaction?