IMRG and Trust Mark create European 'trust mark' to reassure e-commerce customers
E-commerce company Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG) and accreditation firm Trusted Shops are collaborating to create a Standard European 'trust mark' to make online shopping more secure.
It is hoped that the move will promote more trust in the online shopping arena by helping consumers to identify and buy from accredited retailers with confidence.
Shoppers will be able to expand their scope and make purchases from a wider range of European retailers.
In turn, e-commerce companies will be able to expand into new countries without needing a strong "physical footprint".
Jean-Marc Noel, managing director at Trusted Shops, welcomed the news as a boost to e-tailers' that could also forge stronger connections between different countries on the continent.
"Online retailers throughout Europe need to expand their market and target customers outside of their own country.
"Without ecommerce, this is a prohibitively expensive venture; safe, secure online shopping gives these organisations the opportunity to sell to more customers, and gives shoppers the confidence to buy," he said.
Figures suggest that e-commerce is becoming increasingly crucial to retailers.
In a recent report, Boston Consulting Group estimated that online transactions will account for 23 per cent of all UK retail sales by 2013.
The proposed European-wide trust mark will require that retailers go through an accreditation process.
As a result, consumers will be more able to place their trust in the participating organisations and will therefore have more confidence to shop online.
It could provide a vital boost to pan-European e-commerce sales.
The news was welcomed by IMRG's chief executive James Roper, who said that retailers needed to address the security and certainty concerns of their increasingly international audience.
"This alliance between Trusted Shops and IMRG strengthens both trust mark schemes and will enable European growth for internet retailers," he added.
Trusted Shops has accredited more than 10,000 retailers since its inception in 2000.