Back in January I was contacted by BuySafe about trying their service on 2BigFeet.com. We’ve tried several “website seals” over the years, and have never found them to cause a significant increase in conversions – not enough to justify their high costs, anyway. So when BuySafe contacted us I wasn’t in a hurry to give the service a try.
I bumped into them again at the Internet Retailer conference this year, and spoke with them in detail at their booth. I didn’t really understand what the service was about or what value they offered customers. BuySafe offers your customers $10,000 in identity theft protection, a third party guarantee of your purchase, up to $1,000, and a $100 lowest price guarantee. If the retailer you purchased from lowers their price within 30 days, BuySafe will refund the difference.
The combination of these services makes the BuySafe service much more valuable to merchants than one of those “security” seals that say “scanned every day.” It provides a real benefit, which is why I think it increases conversions so much.
Adding BuySafe to Your Site
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Once it was in place, we were able to paste the standard conversion kicker codes in different site templates and it automatically populated.
<span id="buySAFE_Kicker" name="buySAFE_Kicker" type="...insert desired kicker code..."></span>
You also have to place a snippet of code on your “conversion page” – thank you or receipt page after an order is completed. The code is pretty simple, but needs a few variables like order number and customer’s email address to validate in case they do file a claim later.
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BuySafe offers numerous different seals and “conversion kicker” graphics that you can place in different areas of your site. We chose to place the default seal in the bottom left corner of every page, and also placed the “conversion kicker” graphics on the product detail page, in the shopping cart, and just below the final complete order button. See the screenshots below for the graphics and placement we used.
See their installation guide for complete details.
Also, there was no additional configuration needed to run an A/B split test – BuySafe configured the test automatically once the standard code was installed on our website.
A/B Split Testing the Seal
Once we had the seal installed we began an A/B split test, showing half of our visitors our site without any BuySafe graphics, and the other half saw the seal and all the conversion kickers. Because BuySafe uses IP address for identifying visitors, they would even see the correct state if they switched devices in their home or used a different web browser the next time they visited the site. Unfortunately that also means if they take their laptop, tablet or smartphone to Starbucks they will be on a different network and could see the alternate.
After about three weeks, we had received a lot of data that showed with very good statistical relevancy a significant increase in conversions. Our conversion rate without the BuySafe seal was a respectable 2.33%. With BuySafe our conversions were lifted to an incredible 2.76% – an 18.6% increase. Average order value remained almost the same, increasing marginally from $115.00 to $115.99.
In addition, we’ve had a few customers contact us directly thanking us for the BuySafe protection we began offering. They like the peace of mind of having a third-party warranty in case the price drops or something went wrong with their order.
For the money, the BuySafe program provides a significant return on investment for online retailers. If the lift in conversion rate remains steady, we will see a very significant 6-figure increase in sales due to adding BuySafe to our site.
Every merchant’s results will vary, but the service would be worth the cost with even a 5–10% increase in conversions. Do yourself a favor and at least try the service (for free) to see if it can work for you.
Email Eric Thorson at BuySafe at email@example.com or visit BuySafe.com for more information or to try the service.
Disclosure: I did not receive any discounts, and am a paying customer of BuySafe. But I did tag along to a dinner they held at IRCE in June. Hey, who turns down free food?