Online retail association Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG) has signed a deal with Trusted Shops which could allow UK retailers to benefit from a potential £1bn of sales.

IMRG and German online accreditation body Trusted Shops have agreed to merge their trust mark schemes with the likes of John Lewis, Marks & Spencer and Asos set to sign up.

Both organisations said the alliance will promote trust in e-commerce throughout Europe and hope to give consumers confidence to buy from accredited domestic and overseas retailers.

Under the scheme, retailers will carry a logo on their website which guarantees the quality of the product, security of data and delivery, and the scheme offers buyer protection on the cost of goods up to €2,500 for 30 days. The costs of this service are paid by the seller.

More than £1bn of potential retail sales were abandoned in online shopping carts in 2011. European Commission research shows 62% of online shoppers fear fraud when shopping online.

IMRG already provides the Internet Shopping is Safe (ISIS) mark, which is carried by retailers including Marks & Spencer, Oasis and Topshop as well as 1,300 etailers.

It will now merge the ISIS mark with Trusted Shops for a year before the latter becomes the overall brand.

Trusted Shops has more than 12,000 members in 11 countires across Europe and believes the newly-formed alliance will boost UK retailers who sell on the continent. Shore retailer Schuh has already signed up to the new scheme.

Trusted Shops managing director Jean-Marc Noël said: “The need for a strong, single European trustmark is clear. Online retailers throughout Europe need to expand their market and target customers outside of their own country.

“Without e-commerce, 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.”

IMRG chief executive James Roper said: “Our research reveals that retailers need to address the security and certainty concerns of their online audience – which is international now, not just within the borders of a city or country.”

The alliance will carry out detailed audits of etailers involved. The scheme has the backing of the UK government and European Commission.