Prettier sites more likely to catch roving surfers

Sydney: Just like beautiful women make fantastic con people because they earn men`s trust very quickly, a similar thing can be seen with websites.

A roving surfer is more likely to trust ``pretty`` sites over those with less visual appeal, a new research has found.

Lead author of the study, Brent Coker, said the increase in website trust, which had developed over the last five years, was directly related to a rise in attractive websites.

``The internet has [become] 20 per cent prettier in the last five years,`` the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Dr Coker, an internet marketing lecturer at the University of Melbourne, as saying.

As part of his study, he created a formula to measure users`` online behaviour and found many people judged the trustworthiness of a website in the same way they decided to trust a new acquaintance.

``We form trust with people who are attractive because we need to form partnerships to have offspring,`` he said.

“In the same way face symmetry defined human attractiveness, a balanced website was seen as more appealing.

But the increase in website appeal had led to a 30 per cent drop in site loyalty over the last five years.

``In the past, people would stick with a website like Amazon. Now, because of [an increase in] attractiveness, they are shopping around,`` he said.

But a site`s popularity was not all about looks.

``The biggest source of frustration for internet users is irrelevant information,`` Dr Coker said.

The study will be presented at the 2011 World Congress in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, and Applied Computing in Las Vegas next week.


By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. You can find out more by clicking this link