Trust is essential for any healthy relationship, be it personal or business. As a business, if consumers don’t trust you, they simply won’t buy from you. Establishing trust can be tricky, but winning it back once it’s lost is near impossible. In short, if you fail to meet expectations, or don’t meet your customer’s needs, people will simply take their business elsewhere.
When people walk into a store, there are plenty of signs on whether a business is trustworthy or not. If things go wrong, you can simply go back to the store and address the problem. With a website, however, it’s much easier to hide bad intentions.
So, what can you do to build trust on your website, and make potential customers feel comfortable with your brand?
Let’s find out!
This is a small, but very important step in establishing trust on your website! Most hosting sites or website providers will offer HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) sites, so make check that yours is one of them. If you meet this benchmark, there will be a small lock in the far left of the URL bar. This indicates that the site is secure, and gives some peace of mind to the user from the onset. Some people may leave your site immediately if they don’t see this lock, to begin with.
Real Accolades and Awards
If you’ve been featured in well-known publications or received any rewards, make sure to feature these on your website with the logos of the media outlets and the awards that you’ve received.
Keep in mind though at anyone can put these images on their website to appear credible. So, include all links possible to any articles, or web pages where people can read about these awards and all the great things that other people have said about you!
Reviews and Ratings
Online reviews are more important today than ever before. Whenever someone encounters your business for the first time, they will likely look for reviews on your website, as well as reviews on other websites too like Google, TrustPilot, etc.
Making these visible is important for building trust. Good reviews show that you meet your customer’s needs. Bad reviews are only ever as bad as their response. A negative review that hasn’t been responded to suggests you don’t care about your customers.
Whereas if people can see you’ve responded to bad reviews, and at least attempted to address the concerns raised, this shows that your customers are important and that you’re accountable for your mistakes.
No one expects a business to be perfect, but they do expect you to take action when you fall short.
Social Accounts are visible
Social proof is very important for establishing trust for businesses today. Your social media accounts will be used by customers to verify the legitimacy of your business and to show that you can be trusted.
The easiest way to do this is to add your accounts to your website. This could be as simple as having the icons for the platforms your on visible on your website, complete with clickable links. This open attitude shows that you’ve got nothing to hide and will increase the number of people who are viewing and engaging with your social media accounts.
Furthermore, this saves people from opening up another tab or picking up their phones to try and find your accounts.
Make sure Your Website Works
Nothing raises red flags more than a website that doesn’t work correctly. This could be sections that aren’t loading properly, links that don’t open, low-quality images, or too many ads.
Invest time in getting your website to load as quickly as possible, and to look as professional as you can. This will go a long way towards establishing trust with potential customers.
Visible Contact Information
Have you ever tried to find the contact information and found yourself accidentally playing detective?
Few things are more frustrating than not being able to find contact information for when you need to get in touch with a business. Not having them visible or clearly accessible implies that you have something to hide and that your customers aren’t important.
To avoid this, have contact information clearly accessible on your website. This could be a number or email address in the footer of every page, or perhaps even a separate ‘contact’ page. Make it clear what the best way for your customers is, provide accurate information, and give a rough response time (e.g “You should hear from us within 48 hours).
Few things make people more nervous online than when it comes time to put in your card details. This could be because you’re a little too far away from payday for another purchase, or because there are people out there trying to take your card information – who knows!
The best way to help put people’s minds at ease is by offering a secure checkout. Choosing a recognisable third party vendor when selecting your payment is key, as this will help your customers to feel they can trust you. You can also use SSL encryption to help keep financial records safe.
It also helps to have the words ‘secure checkout’ visible on your page.
Building trust is essential to the ongoing success and growth of your business, so be sure to implement as many of these steps as you can!
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