How an ecommerce CEO in the real estate space learned to stop worrying and love the floating trustmark

How an ecommerce CEO in the real estate space learned to stop worrying and love the floating trustmark

Founded in the 1970s, The Plan Collection sells building plans online for people who want to build their own perfect homes, saving them the expense and time of working with an architect, and letting them put more resources into their dream houses.

No strangers to ecommerce, they first began selling online in 2001. Despite this, in 2017 CEO Brian Toolan wanted to improve their conversion rates and turned to Inflow, a company that specializes in conversion rate optimization (CRO). Inflow recommended implementing the McAfee SECURE trustmark to reduce doubt and increase customer trust.

Brian was receptive to the idea of the McAfee SECURE trustmark because the sales cycle is somewhat long (two to five weeks) and the product is very emotional.

"Most customers come to our site once and buy a plan once in their lives, so the issue of trust and confidence that they're at the right site for this is really important." — Brian Toolan, CEO, The Plan Collection

Doubts emerged

Inflow typically places the trustmark in the header and footer of a site, plus a floating trustmark that remains visible at all times for users. Brian wasn't thrilled about this because he was worried it would take up too much room.

Although they prefer to work with the floating trustmark, Inflow initially ran the test in late April 2017 with only the header and the footer.

A new approach gets results

When the Inflow team analyzed the first test results in mid-June, they saw an increase, but it wasn't as notable as Inflow had hoped for. Brian was disappointed, but the team at Inflow knew they needed to try again—this time with the floating trustmark.

"And then [Inflow] convinced me, 'Hey do it with the floating trustmark, give it more time,'" recalled Brian. They implemented the floating trustmark on thoughout the  desktop and mobile site, and began collecting the sales data.

Here they are on the home page:

And on the product page:

After 4 months and nearly 350,000 visits, the data was in. The McAfee SECURE service, when using the full floating trustmark, lifted revenue by 55%. Further, the conversion rate increased by 33%, and the average customer spent more as well—revenue per user increased 39%.

Needless to say, Brian was blown away by the numbers.

"Wow, big impact from the data — it proved me wrong from what I had initially thought. My background is more finance — just looking at the numbers and the data is what said okay, we're gonna do this." — Brian Toolan, CEO, The Plan Collection

All his doubts gone

Despite his initial reservations, the floating trustmark's huge numbers won Brian over. When asked if he'd recommend the McAfee SECURE service, he answered, "to my competitors, I wouldn't."

Joking aside, Brian described the McAfee SECURE service's impact on The Plan Collection as one that didn't just help the bottom line, but actually allowed the business to pursue new opportunities.