About Matthew Niederberger

Matthew works as Conversion Optimisation Manager at Ziggo BV. In his free time he enjoys family life as well as digging into online user research material whilst frequently generating some of his own, which he freely shares here on actualinsights.com.


  1. I have always wanted to do this test, but never on such a scale. I’m not surprised McAfee ranked well, but very Surprised Paypal did. Thank you for this.

  2. Were you able to make the order in which trust icons appeared to the respondents randomized? If everyone saw the logos in the same order, then your stats are off. With survey questions where you have more than 3 responses, you nearly always want to randomize for accuracy because people react differently to stuff depending where on a list or screen it appears…. but you already knew that, right? :-)

  3. Hi Anne,

    Thanks for your reply and exquisite attention to detail ;)

    The tool I used for the click heatmap, Usabilla, does allow for some form of randomness, but like the disclaimer said… this is not a scientific study. I could put a lot more work into it, but I guess I tend to go for the shock and awe effect before taking it another step forward.

    In a follow up study randomness would play an important part (you weren’t the only one who mentioned this) as I am sure I can dump the logos into a testing tool that will show different grids of the logos together or even display them one at a time (this to validate… once again). My main goal was to get a conversation started that we should look beyond the basic facts of effects on conversion online. I think I reached that goal :)

    Trust logos, or as the British call them trustmarks, undoubtedly play a significant role in persuading a visitor in the security of the website and that any personal information will be dealt with securely. But like other things in life, I am more inclined to get onboard a Boeing 777 aircraft than a Russian built Ilyushin il-96 because I am more comfortable with the Boeing brand flying me safely from A to B than Ilyushin, based on personal experience. So I don’t mind paying more for a ticket for an airline company that uses equipment that I trust. (I am not great with metaphores, so cut me a little slack… haha)

    Thanks again for you feedback, I will definitely keep it top of mind when I retest. By the way, were there any brands ‘missing’ from the selection?

    Take care,

  4. I agree with your disclaimer – it’s not a particularly scientific study, however I think you’ve done a good job of creating interest around a topic is regularly the subject of conversion testing.

    Recognition of trust symbols is an interesting one; a good follow up test would be taking one of the poor performing symbols from your test and running a straight A/B test with an add to cart stage that doesn’t have any symbols at all. My point is, that it’s all very well and good asking people to state their level of trust between two items (one of which is well known), but what really counts is what people actually do.

    As we know – what people say in response to a quant survey doesn’t always match behaviour.

    Good article though Matthew!

  5. @Brian – I’m glad you noticed the disclaimer ;)

    A/B testing would be great to check out. Variants such as:
    – Original brand logo
    – No brand logo
    – Better known brand logo or Lesser known brand logo (whichever is applicable in reference to original brand logo)

    Back to your statement about matching behavior with attitude is the holy grail as far as I am concerned. I have been looking into an approach like this combing a voice-of-the-customer tool with a customer-experience tool… in English, integrating iPerceptions’ webValidator survey tool with Tealeaf. With an integration like that you can scan survey results for specific attitudes, then replay the sessions in Tealeaf and potentially match the two together. I think it is possible and I honestly think that companies need to start looking into the potential of such solutions, maybe not directly on a monetary value, but pure on visitor insights.

    Glad you liked the post and I hope the data will help you start some interesting discussions. If you have any test ideas, let me know. I’ve got access to a plethora of tools and various high traffic volume websites.

  6. Hi Matthew,
    I must declare an interest in this topic first, as our company has just produced a new type of trust seal so my views may be biased but I am doing my best to be objective!
    It is really interesting stuff and just goes to prove something I have thought for a long time. People seem to place a lot of trust in “The Brand” rather than the information being presented that underlies that brand. If people took the time to look under the hood and see how or what those brands were doing to help websites establish trust, I think the public’s view might change.
    As a consumer I want to know the information that is being relied on to tell me to trust someone. Where is it coming from? Who controls it? Can it be manipulated? So for me, site seals need to move a step forward so that instead of providing a blanket statement with no supporting detail, I want to see the detail, with a recommendation and then let me make up my own mind as to whether I believe or trust the information or not.
    Our new Trust Passport product (trustpassport.com) has tried to do this. We aggregate information from government sources such as the companies registers and the tax authorities, from commercial sources such as map information on where offices are actually located, active malware and blacklist scanning, reputational information from web users as to their experiences and some help and advice on when things go wrong. All this is presented in a easy to view graphical format that can be checked out in 10 seconds. The sources are all clearly stated and most importantly, the fact that the company has been physically confirmed as having been contacted in the real world at their stated registered address. This ties real identity to virtual identity and will help elimate fakers. Finally, the information being presented is collated dynamically each time the seal is viewed.. The seal can be removed remotely if the website or company blots its copy book. We think it is a new way to help someone establish trust without having to rely on a Brand to do it for you.
    We would very much appreciate it you could add our product to your review list the next time you conduct a survey of this kind.
    Well done on an excellent piece of work! Great stuff!

  7. Matthew, we’d be happy to assist with a follow up study with randomized logo’s. We could set up for example 4 different cases (each in different, random order) and combine the results.

  8. This is really cool. As you might expect, Verisign has become a joke. You may want to look at your OG tag settings. I tried to post to Facebook but didn’t get an image and it was using your home page URL and title.

  9. Thanks so much for this article. We’ve been debating this subject for the better part of year and it was very helpful. Mainly, we’ve been discussing joining the BBB, but it after reading this it doesn’t seem as effective as we though it might be. It’s surprising to see that Paypal did so well, being that they just give that away to any verified user.

    Has anyone done a follow up on this test? I’d love to see it.

  10. Hey, great job done. Unfortunately I did not research this matter before deciding on going with the current SSL authority. From what I have seen in the past, EVs convert better as the company name is displayed in the address bar, I have always avoided to use trust logos.. don’t know why, but with the current project I am working on, I thought it was necessary.
    However your research, even if not scientific has great value.


  1. […] study shows the vast differences in recognition between leading marks. Take a look at the article: Trust Logo Recognition Precedes Presence | Actual Insights __________________ Ted S Find me on twitter: @teds027 Latest Post: Are you attracting a Fan or […]

  2. […] Insights ran a set of tests to see which security logos’s people recognised and trusted and the results are very interesting and perhaps worrying if you’re showing a […]

  3. […] If you want  to discover how trust logo recognition affects online purchase behaviour follow the link below. It is widely accepted that trust logos can have a positive effect on conversion rates when purchasing online, but is that enough? What about which trust logo?  http://www.actualinsights.com/2011/trust-logo-recognition-precedes-presence/ […]

  4. […] Hi, This makes some good reading: Trust Logo Recognition Precedes Presence | Actual Insights Alicia __________________ > website certification from […]

  5. […] keurmerken Uit cijfers van Actual Insights blijkt dat er in het buitenland maar een handjevol keurmerken is dat daadwerkelijk herkend wordt […]

  6. […] did an amazing remote test on trust and logo’s which is also […]

  7. […] online, but does it matter to them who says it’s secure? A recent post at Actual Insights, Trust Logo Recognition Precedes Presence, indicated that it does matter, but we wanted to find out for […]

  8. […] from Actual Insights suggest that just a handful of trustmark logos are actually recognised by […]

  9. […] Process: Booking seemed easier than with Airbnb. No list of questions. Trustlogo’s seemed a bit small and few. Location of the Complete Booking button too far to the right… move […]

  10. […] Process: Booking seemed easier than with Airbnb. No list of questions. Trustlogo’s seemed a bit small and few. Location of the Complete Booking button too far to the right… move […]

  11. […] by Actual Insights showed that 76 percent of consumers did not purchase something from a website without seeing a […]

  12. […] the blog actualinsights, the founder and CEO of TrustCloud, Xin Chung, read about Usabilla Live. His hopes were that this […]

  13. […] to Actual Insights, we seem to trust certain logos more than others. Take the test and see how you […]

  14. […] website’s security badges. But what security badges should you use? According to a survey from Actual Insights, 76% of respondents said the reason they didn’t purchase something online is because they […]

  15. […] I am building a panel of fantastic folk like yourselves (am I going a little overboard with the smooching? hehe) who I can invite to participate in online research projects. Research projects like the one I did with Trust Logos. […]

  16. […] to this Actual Insights study, 75.66 shoppers say trust logos affect their sense of trust for a specific website but the same […]

  17. […] include McAfee, Verisign, Paypal, BBB, and TRUSTe, which were found to be the most effective in a survey by Actual Insights, but there are many […]

  18. […] some surveys, as many as 61% of participants said they had decided not to purchase a product because it was missing a trust […]

  19. […] immediately establish as much trust with the consumer as an instantly recognisable one can. Indeed, 64% of people surveyed said an unknown (unrecognisable) Trust logo would affect their sense of trust for a specific […]

  20. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  21. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  22. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  23. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  24. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  25. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  26. […] can give eCommerce conversions another boost by including safe shopping trust marks on your site. A study found that these are important for 76% of web users, and a similar number have failed to purchase items […]

  27. […] des trust signals comme des indicateurs de shopping sécurisé pour rassurer les […]

  28. […] tread with caution. Trust icons backfire if they are not well known. According to an Actual Insights study, 75.66 shoppers say they have once decided against shopping as they could not recognize any of the […]

  29. […] Studies have shown that as many as 20% of people decide to drop out of an online purchase because they have concerns about payment security. If the way you accept payments looks hokey and is totally unrecognizable, people will simply decide it isn’t worth it. To set minds at ease, use a trusted processor (PayPal, Authorize.net, Dwolla, Braintree, 2Checkout, Stripe, Selz, Gumroad, etc) and display trust logos. […]

  30. […] survey research by Actual Insights shows that 61% of the research participants have at one point decided not to […]

  31. […] Actual Insights conducted a survey to find out which trust seals visitors recognized and which ones yielded the greatest sense of trust. […]

  32. […] there is some correlation between a badge’s recognizability and performance, ultimately the simple inclusion of a seal somewhere on each page of one’s site (especially in […]

  33. […] to this Actual Insights study, 75.66 shoppers say trust logos affect their sense of trust for a specific website but the same […]

  34. […] Insights survey, almost 61 percent of consumers stated that they have not purchased something because a trust logo was missing. The source also reported that approximately 75 percent of survey respondents pay attention to the […]

  35. […] few years ago Matthew Niederberger, co-founder of Lean Insights conducted a study in the US online travel industry to discover the effects of trust seals on visitors during […]

  36. […] a well-known brand. A survey by Actual Insights discovered that widely recognised logos performed the […]

  37. […] one study, users were asked several questions about website seals, their effect on shopping cart abandonment, […]

  38. […] to a study by Actual Insights, more than 75% of users responded that trust logos affect your sense of trust for a specific […]

  39. […] With the goal of convincing potential customers that the process of buying something from your website is safe and secure, you should put badges in places that can be seen. Although, too many badges can have a negative effect. Don’t add things that aren’t recognizable. Check out this awesome article that shows Shopping Cart Abandonment with Trust Logos […]

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