Ahead Of The Class In Consumer Privacy

9% Increase in Lead Conversion

Less than a year after Avenue100’s launched, traffic to the online directory of schools and courses had increased to more than one million unique visitors a month. Enviable stats for, at the time, a young Internet site in a crowded marketplace. And CourseAdvisor intended to maximize such stellar numbers into the highest ROI possible.

That meant turning more of this traffic into quality leads for CourseAdvisor’s member schools and online course providers. Of course, the challenge was basically the same hurdle so many online sites face everyday: getting visitors to submit their real contact information. To assure such information stayed private, CourseAdvisor significantly invested in rigorous privacy and security best practices. However, this sizable investment was invisible to site visitors, many of whom were more inclined to submit their personal information if they knew it was protected.

The Profit Potential of Proving Online Privacy

How could CourseAdvisor turn the company’s privacy measures into a visible, lead-generating asset? An additional web page describing CourseAdvisor’s privacy policies was one option, but would visitors take the time to look for it, much less read it? CourseAdvisor believed that instant, visual proof of privacy would be the stronger tactic.

Enter TRUSTe, provider of the well-known privacy seal of approval for e-Commerce sites, found on more than forty percent of the Internet’s top fifty sites, including Yahoo, Microsoft, eBay, AOL, Adobe, AT&T, Comcast, Disney,, Apple, LinkedIn, Web MD, and Yelp. After completing TRUSTe’s privacy certification process, it was time to see if this recognized privacy icon would impact CourseAdvisor’s own conversion rates.

The company created an A/B test site to find out. The TRUSTe privacy seal was visibly displayed to half of the test site’s visitors, while hidden to the other half. Meanwhile, CourseAdvisor tracked the total number of accurately completed forms. Within a week, the TRUSTe privacy seal’s power to boost conversion rates was plainly apparent.

Real ROI, Real Fast

CourseAdvisor’s testing revealed an astonishing 9% boost in conversions in the test group that saw the recognized TRUSTe seal. It was additionally obvious that the privacy seal not only increased the number of accurate registrations, it considerably broadened the range of applicants requesting information. Clearly, the TRUSTe privacy seal compelled more CourseAdvisor website visitors to accurately complete revenue-generating lead forms.

As the CourseAdvisor team noted, "The TRUSTe privacy seal has directly impacted our business through more quality leads. We’d lose tens of thousands of dollars per week if we removed it."

Fast-forward a few years later. Today, CourseAdvisor has emerged as a true leader among the competition. The site offers visitors one of the Internet’s most comprehensive directories of schools and courses - in a setting that visibly proves their privacy is protected.

Increase consumer confidence in your business

Increasing your online sales depends on customer trust and online credibility. These TRUSTe service packages for small and medium businesses can help you simplify privacy issues and protect your reputation with industry-leading complaint-handling services. Discover the business benefits of displaying a trust mark from TRUSTe, the most respected name in online privacy.


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