Trust alleviates the apprehensions of insecurity that crop up when the retailer is not known, or the way the company will deliver the goods or services purchased. Building trust in e-commerce necessitates a clear indication of rigorous standards of security, data safeguard, transparency of data use, etc. (The effect of IT-based security on feedback mechanisms and trust building in online auction settings)
Morgan and Hunt during 1994 indicate that trust can be generated when firms produce superior resources, uphold high standards of corporate values, communicate information about expectations, market intelligence and evaluations, and eliminate malevolently exploiting their trading partner. Research dealing with trust from the conventional marketing perspective concentrates on an experience-based consequence. But in the online environment, trust is necessary prior to the online shopping experience can occur. One field of major problem for consumers in the development of trust is privacy. As indicated by Luo during 2002 in the field of Internet marketing, invasion of privacy is indicated as the unauthorized collection, disclosure, or other use of personal information. Since the high priority consumers place on privacy the FTC has been actively associated in instituting guidelines for online marketers in putting forth and meeting privacy needs. (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers)
The FTC has depended on just information norms to guide secrecy regulations and industry practice in the U.S. These principles involve "notice/awareness, choice/consent, access/participation, and security/integrity, and redress/enforcement." (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers) Irrespective of the fact that industry has depended on self-regulation, Milne and Boza during 1998 could in a study of about 365 organizations could perceive that about 38% of the organizations notified consumers about collection of personal data, 33% could reveal that the assistance of the information and 26% ask for permission to assist the information. Many organizations apply the Internet to collect information through the involvement of cookies or other types of tracking software without the knowledge of the consumers. Such data collection supplements to the apprehension of the consumer with regard to the privacy concerns. Creating trust may be a solution to the apprehension of the consumers. (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers)
While the consumers generate information online, they desire to have their transactions secured. Consumers must therefore, have some sort of indication or indicator on the web site that will provide as a surrogate trust indicator. Warrington and others during 2000 detect several cues that consumers apply when online. Such indications include polices on privacy, returns and security, and the existence of a company address and telephone number for adopting the alternate ordering procedures. The researchers demarcate that the overall professional appearance of the site also promotes consumer trust. Turban and others during 2002 repeat this and detect policies addressing with privacy and product returns as mechanisms of the model that develops consumers trust in the online merchant. This model incorporates presence of trust certificates and seals such as VeriSign and TRUSTe, along with vendor evaluation like the Better Business Bureau logo. Irrespective of the fact that there are several seal of approval programs, there are two popular programs: TRUSTe and BBBOnline. (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers)
In an assessment of the prioritized Media Metrix 500 Internet consumer websites in 2000, about 23.9% of the sites had some form of seal emblem, symbol or endorsement. The TRUSTe program deals with the just information norms: its authorization to provide notice, select, security, data quality and access. The sites with the TRUSTe seal are evaluated through an initial inspection, seeding, and outside audits. The BBBOnline is intended to assert consumers that their personal information will be protected in cyberspace by the companies those are involved in its privacy seal program. The TRUSTe as well as the BBBOnline programs intend that consumers will feel more confident and have enhanced trust of the online companies exhibiting their seals of approval. Turban and others further promote consumers to dynamically visualize for addresses, telephone and fax numbers, along with trust certificates and the BBB logo when purchasing online.
Zemke and Connellan during 2001 reiterated the significance of several of such signs in their publication Keys to Build Trust from the First Click. Particularly the existence of Seals of Approval, including the BBB online, TRUSTe and VeriSign, along with Visa or American Express Logos, is identified as a significant trust sign. The significance of consumer privacy and security policies, third party seals of approval, return guarantees and telephone and e-mail safeguards are also sustained by Urban, Sultan and Quails during 2000. At the end of the year 2002 there were five online privacy seal programs available to Web site operators: BBBOnline, CPA Web Trust Online Privacy, the Direct Marketing Association's Privacy Promise, Secure Assure, and TRUSTe. (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers)
While name and brand acknowledgement of already reputed conventional retailers can confidently entail a baseline for consumers when they go online, this also is applicable to some uncertainty in the consumers' mind when dealing with unknown merchants. Recently, online companies have not succeeded in delivering on promises, specifically during the 2000 and 2001 holiday seasons. Unsuccessful assurances supplemented the suspicion of the consumers to purchase online. As per Hemphill during 2002, electronic commerce will not attain its full prospective in the U.S. economy unless consumers feel confident that their privacy and confidentiality have been safeguarded. It is now evident that for all retailers to generate a secure and reliable shopping experience for online consumers.
Yoon during 2002 reveal that to secure trust for a web site, managing the overall image of the web-site was more significant than emphasizing the functionality of the site. He also detected that web sites that prevail online are more emergently in need of trust acknowledgement than those appearing both online as well as offline. These consequences further give rise to the necessity for improving the communication with consumers to assist their trust of the web site. Since consumers sometimes draw upon signs from their environment, companies must generate trust signs as well as create a favorable circumstance in which the deals can take place. On the basis of the assessment of literature, several trust signs were detected. The privacy, security, and return policies; shipping strategies; warranty follow up; email contact; physical address or location; phone or fax numbers; alternative ordering choices; BBB TRUSTe, Verisign or credit card logos are included as the cues. (Investigating the use of trust cues by top web retailers)
As per a survey made by Ponemon Institute and Interactive ad firm Dotomi, an opt-in online marketing campaigns can be considered to be one of the more efficient mode to create trust among the Internet users and attain personal information for them. Practically, they determined to analyze the importance of online permission for Internet marketing. The Online Permissions Survey supported by Dotomy was relied on the reactions from a statistically representative group of 1,799 Internet-accessing adults in all important sections of the U.S. The Researchers depute respondents two sample environment, both presenting the option whether or not to permit an online merchant to distribute information regarding them with third party marketers. The first approach is associated with a merchant the consumer was not familiar with but interested in purchasing from. The second was pertaining to an online merchant which the consumer was not familiar with, but was interested in buying from. In both the cases the study revealed that the one that