March 26, 2010, 12:00 AM

TotalVac sees its average order value rise with a shopping guarantee

After adding a new online security assurance and shopping guarantee program to its web site, TotalVac.com says its average order value increased 42.5% and its conversion rate rose 6.1%.

Zak Stambor

Managing Editor

After adding a new online security assurance and shopping guarantee program to its web site, TotalVac.com says its average order value increased 42.5% and its conversion rate rose 6.1%, the retailer says.

The vacuum cleaner and small appliance parts retailer conducted an A/B test of buySafe Inc.’s Bonded Merchant program in October and November. The test recorded more than 3,000 online orders among 159,828 visitors to the site. Some test participants were presented the option during checkout to sign up for the buySafe bonding program for an additional 3% of an item’s purchase price.

The average order for those presented with the option was $34.07, compared to $23.91 for those not offered the buySafe guarantee, says Jeff Bradshaw, TotalVac president. Moreover, those presented with the option converted at a rate of 2.77%, compared to 2.61% for the other shoppers.

The buySafe Bonded Merchant program has two components, one related to online security and the other a product and service guarantee.

It provides assurance to shoppers that the merchant web site is secure and protects customer identification information, with up to $20,000 offered to shoppers if their confidential personal data, such as payment card account numbers and passwords, are stolen. It also provides identity theft victims professional services from buySafe partner Assurant Specialty Property, which will take such steps as working with credit bureaus to remediate a shopper’s credit rating. The program also will pay shoppers up to $25,000 to compensate them for online orders that never arrive or arrive damaged.

The program gives shoppers an element of trust, says Bradshaw. “If customers are deciding between ordering from us or Hoover or Eureka, they need to have a feeling of safety because they know Hoover and Eureka, but they probably don’t know us,” says Bradshaw. “This is a good way to level the playing field with other retailers.”

The program is free to merchants as buySafe receives a share of the bond purchase price.

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