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The internet is a large and sometimes scary place. Without being all doom and gloom, let’s just say that there are enough scams, threats and risks out there that you have to be careful and responsible when you are online.
And it’s in this scary online realm, that you are trying to run your business. In addition to ensuring that people find your site online and are compelled to take action, you also need to ensure they trust you and feel comfortable doing business with you.
So what are some things you can do to build trust online?
Let’s start with the easy and obvious…
Create a site that looks professional and trustworthy. Remember that first impressions are hard to change and people are going to judge your site right away. Ensure the site is free of errors and also be sure your contact info is prominent and easy to find. If someone can’t easily reach you, they will wonder why you are hiding out. Make sure your copyright date is current and your content is current. Make the site easy to navigate – if they can’t easily use the site, they aren’t going to trust it as a resource.
Policy and Procedure
Add as many “Credibility Boosters” as you can. Think BBB accreditation, or secure/safe site logos, even adding Visa and Mastercard logos help transfer credibility to you (people see the trusted logos and somehow feel more at ease – tests have proven it!). Share testimonials (don’t throw them all on one page; sprinkle them throughout the site so people see them as they browse your site). If you have any guarantees or awards or special recognition, make those prominent on the site. If you belong to any organizations that enhance your credibility, list those as well.
With all the social media options, it is easy to be “transparent” online. Let people get to know you – the person behind the company. Let them know what you stand for and what you believe in and what they can expect from you. I am not saying you have to share your family vacation slideshow online and I’m not saying you can’t separate your personal and business social media profiles but I am saying, let people get to know you a little bit. It’s pretty impersonal on that big old world wide web. If you can create a little bit of a connection, you’ll do a lot better.
The best thing you can do to get people to trust you is to prove that you know what you are talking about and that you have info/products and services that can help them. Your goal is to generate revenue (through the sale of products or services). Their goal is to have their needs met and their problems solved. You have to remember it is about their goal (having their needs met and problems solved). If you aren’t focused on their goal, you will never accomplish yours. If you can show them how much you know and better yet, if you can offer them free information (via your Blog and social media), you instantly elevate your status in their eyes and they are more likely to want to do business with you. Create tips and advice, share information on how to use or care for the product, and don’t forget to ask questions to get them engaged and responding. Social media and Blogs make it so easy to share information, there is no reason you shouldn’t take advantage of it. You should also consider guest blogging and submitting articles to industry publications to show that you have broad reach and exposure.
Building trust is important and it’s something you should never lose sight of. You should constantly be looking at how you can build more trust and earn more credibility in your marketplace.
If you have any tips or suggestions to add, the comment box is below. As always I welcome feedback!