Do consumers notice or care when a site is more secure? Is it worth the extra cost for a company to invest in the more strenuously verified Extended Validation (EV) certificate? DevOps.com conducted a survey to explore these questions and determine what, if any, impact an EV certificate has on consumer behavior and spending. The results are significant.
What is an EV certificate? The “Learning to Trust Your Browser” report explains, “The EV certificate was created to address the weaknesses in the traditional certificate process and provide greater confidence in the websites you connect to. EV stands for ‘extended validation’ and refers to the much more strenuous and exhaustive process used to comprehensively verify the identity of the company or individual requesting the certificate.”
We showed side-by-side mockups of websites to survey participants. One with a standard SSL certificate, and a duplicate website with an EV certificate. One was a banking website in a desktop browser and the other was a retail website in a mobile browser. We asked a series of questions about how users feel about internet security in general, and which website they are more or less likely to perform various actions on.
Here are some of the key findings we discovered from the survey results:
- For every measured behavior, a website with an EV certificate shows an uplift in user trust.
- Half of the respondents indicated that the green address bar of the EV certificate websites has a significant influence on their perception of the brand or company.
- Almost 60 percent of survey participants are worried about being the victim of an online phishing scam.
- Nearly two-thirds of those surveyed stated that they feel slightly or much safer doing business with a site that is verified with an EV certificate.
- The presence of an EV certificate leads to a higher probability that a consumer will share sensitive information, or be willing to complete a transaction online.
Consumers are worried about security and there are a variety of concerns that keep them up at night. Will their personal health information be stolen? Will their social media accounts get hacked? Will their banking and financial details be compromised? Will their identity or credit card information get pilfered?
More than 8 out of 10 of the survey participants are worried about these issues, which is why 91 percent stated they want to business with companies that invest in best-of-breed security solutions, and 96.3 percent indicated that they want to do business with companies that protect their confidential information. Based on all of that feedback, it should come as no surprise that they also revealed a significant preference for websites with an EV certificate.
“There are two axioms that drive businesses—perception is reality, and the customer is always right,” according to the survey. “The results of this survey illustrate that an investment in an EV certificate plays a significant role in influencing customer perception and fostering trust. The increased consumer confidence has a direct impact on revenue and improves the bottom line for companies that use an EV certificate.”
Check out the full report to learn more about consumer perception and the value of an EV certificate. Click here to download Learning to Trust Your Browser.