Because I was one of the first people to do any serious split and multivariate testing of the Hacker Safe Logo years ago, I’m asked all the time if displaying the seal still boosts conversion rates.
For a while I was reluctant to share some of my later testing results, because Hacker Safe was bought out by McAfee a couple years ago and they changed the logo from being the “Hacker Safe Seal” to the “McAfee Secure Seal”.
My early testing after this change showed a fairly big drop in the conversion boost produced by using the logo/seal on most sites tested.
Don’t get me wrong, even the “McAfee Secure” version still out performed having NO security seal or logo, but the big gains I had seen with the Hacker Safe version had dropped off.
There were a couple reasons for this…
First, the name “Hacker-Safe” itself carried a strong promise to visitors, (which was one of the key factors in the rapid success of Hackersafe.)
Just the name alone increased visitors confidence that their information would be secure on the sites they were visiting.
So changing away from using the Hacker Safe name after buying the company was a big initial mistake made by McAfee in my opinion.
The second problem was a “brand positioning” issue with McAfee themselves.
I discovered this in multiple interviews and conversations I had with usability testing subjects. As they browsed my client’s sites during usability testing, I would frequently ask them questions about what they thought the “McAfee Secure Logo” meant.
In nearly every case they said they thought it meant that the site had been scanned for and was secure from viruses.
In their minds the McAfee brand was all about viruses protection, and had nothing to do with being safe and secure from hackers or data breeches.
But all of this was a couple years ago.
Since then McAfee has made big strides in changing their brand image from being a “virus protection” company, to an “internet security” company.
They also made a very wise decision and gave McAfee secure clients the option to display the McAfee Secure logo OR the Hacker Safe Seal.
Because of this, the conversion boost I’ve been seeing in my test rounds on client sites has returned, and in many cases even improved over my early testing.
Of course displaying the McAfee Secure Seal or Hacker Safe Logo has not helped on every single site, or in every single test. This is because each market, and each demographic is different. Some have different levels of fear about online security, so they will respond differently (or not at all) to the logo’s.
But overall in about 95% of the tests I’ve run, the McAfee Secure and Hacker Safe logo’s do indeed boost conversion rates.
And when they do the boost is often significant.
For example here are the results of a recent test round I did for a client on an eCommerce site selling consumer electronics:
Control (no seal) = 4.23% Conversion Rate
McAfee Secure Logo = 4.89% CR
Hacker Safe Logo = 4.97% CR
Better Business Bureau Logo = 4.55% CR
Hacker Safe + BBB = 5.02%
(These numbers are based on a total sample size of over 100,000 visitors, so the results are certainly statistically significant.)
So as you can see, both the Hacker Safe version and the McAfee Secure Seal beat the BBB logo.
However, the combination of the BBB logo AND Hacker Safe produced the largest jump in conversion rates.
(For this particular client, because of their high amount of monthly traffic, going from 4,23% to over 5.02% in just one test round added nearly $250,000 to their bottom line each month… It pays to test!)
So, my final assessment is…
Even after all these years, the Hacker Safe Logo (or McAfee Secure Seal) still is worth testing on your site to see if you get the same kind of boosts me and my clients are seeing.
Full Disclosure: I am an affiliate for McAfee and receive commissions if you buy through my link (which also gives you a discount off their regular price.)
But commissions can’t change test results, and I don’t promote anything I don’t test first.
About the AuthorEric Graham is a serial entrepreneur, author, speaker, copywriter and consultant. Enter your name and email address below to get notified when new response boosting tips, tested conversion strategies, updates, articles and videos are posted.
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