Trust symbols are a key factor driving a customer’s willingness to purchase

by Hayley Silver • ,

by Hayley Silver, Vice President
with Cory Mitchell, Manager

How do online shopping trust symbols (e.g. McAfee, BBB, Bizrate’s Customer Certified Medal) affect a customer’s online shopping experience? According to a Bizrate Insights study of online buyers, trust symbols are a key factor in a consumer’s comfort level on a site – 50% have used a trust symbol as a deciding factor in whether or not to purchase from a website. Understanding how consumers interpret these symbols, why they look for them, and where they expect to find them can help retailers take action to continue to move the needle on conversion.

Trust symbols offer consumers a sense of security when they are unfamiliar with a retailer

85% of consumers find trust symbols to be meaningful, and most interpret them to mean “security” (66%), “trustworthiness” (45%), and “reliability” (33%).

Bizrate Insights Trust Symbols Study

Most consumers search out these symbols when they are unfamiliar with a retailer, or if it is their first time making a purchase regardless of retailer familiarity, and 48% have clicked through on one of these symbols to verify information. Ratings and reviews also instill confidence and impact conversion, as 75% of consumers have read them when determining whether or not to make a purchase.

Bizrate Insights Trust Symbols Study, August - September 2013

Consumers stop to look for trust symbols most often during checkout

79% of consumers look for trust symbols while on a retailer’s site. The sense of security the symbols bring is most important once they’ve gotten their wallet out and are ready to make a purchase.

Bizrate Insights Trust Symbols Study, August - September 2013

Trust symbols should be easy for consumers to find

Location is key, as consumers look for trust symbols in very specific places. Since 40% look for a trust symbol at some point during the checkout or payment process, and 31% search one out on the homepage, retailers should ensure that trust symbols are prominently visible in more than one place in order to maximize their benefit.

Bizrate Insights Trust Symbols Study, August - September 2013

It’s clear that despite the prevalence of online shopping, consumers still need reassurance before opening their wallets, and trust symbols are a key factor in tipping the scale towards the decision to purchase.

About the Study

The Bizrate Insights Trust Symbols Study and the Online Shopping Safety Study were conducted via the Bizrate Insights survey platform and offered to online buyers immediately after purchasing from the Bizrate Insights Network of over 5,000 e-commerce retailers in the US and Canada. Data from the Online Shopping Safety Study was collected from 5,106 online buyers from August 19 – 25, 2013. Data from the Trust Symbols Study was collected from 6,027 online buyers from August 27 – September 2, 2013.

For over 12 years, Bizrate Insights has helped retailers listen to their customers in a way that is fast and measurable, resulting in insights, action, conversation, and customer loyalty. The Bizrate Insights customer feedback and ratings platform allows retailers to collect seller ratings directly from verified customers.

Standard ratings are published across the leading comparison shopping site,, and syndicated across the web’s largest search engines to help drive conversion and traffic.  Collecting over 20 million surveys annually, Bizrate Insights is one of the largest sources of consumer-generated review content in the world, delivering actionable insights and valuable shopper data to key decision makers in e-commerce. Bizrate Insights is used by over 40% of Internet Retailer Top 500 retailers, as well as thousands of smaller boutiques.

Visit to learn more about our FREE and paid buyer and site abandonment survey and reporting products.

For more information, please contact:
Hayley Silver
Vice President, Bizrate Insights

Bizrate Insights
12200 W. Olympic Boulevard Suite 300
Los Angeles, California 90064

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