We live in a world now that visitors to your website make a decision to stay or leave in just a matter of seconds. According to a study by Microsoft we now have a shorter attention span than a goldfish and this could be the difference between getting that sale, generating that lead, collecting that email address or simply losing a customer.
Some of that decision is determined on whether or not they believe your website is trustworthy. In this post we are going to go over the importance of building trust with your website and simple things you can do to build that trust quickly.
Why is Trust for Your Website Important?
It sounds like a silly question to even ask, but with the possibility of fraud, phishing scams, viruses, etc. people today are much more cautious than ever before. If you are running an online business, you need to be very aware of how your site and business are perceived.
If you are using a hosted solution for your ecommerce site (WooCommerce, Shopify, Magento, FoxyCart), you don’t have to worry about the security of your checkout flow. The real question is what about the process of getting a customer up to point of pulling out their wallets?
How can you quickly establish trust with your visitors quickly?
What does it even mean for a customer to perceive your website as trustworthy?
UXMag recently did a study that dove into what consumers thought made a brand trustworthy:
For consumers, trust means:
1. A company is moral. Trust involves the belief that a company is law-abiding and fair while also showing that it cares about its customers.
2. A product will do what it claims to do. A consumer has expectations that the company’s product will live up to its claims, which are assumed to be accurate and unbiased. Most people trust that when they hit the “send” button, an email will be sent to the selected contact.
3. Information will be correct, complete, and unbiased. When people trust the information and choices presented, they are less likely to feel a need to go elsewhere.
4. A product or service has quality. People want to feel confident in their choices and we all want to feel confident that our digital devices are quality products that will safely hold important data.
5. “A company will protect me.” Security and privacy are increasingly a key concern for consumers as they navigate the digital world. People want to know that a company has their best interests in mind. Will a company safely store my personal credit card information and keep sensitive information private?
6. “If I don’t understand, there is a good reason why.” Consumers can be comfortable with not understanding exactly why a company collects information if they are confident that the information is being used to create a better product or service.
7. “I will be successful.” For consumers, there must be a sense that if they follow a process through all required steps, their goals and intention will be met
Consumers who distrust will:
+ View company claims and intentions with suspicion
+ Go to other websites to verify information
+ Decide not to make a purchase
+ Attempt to conceal or withhold personal information
+ Abandon processes
+ Tell others about their negative experiences
We want to avoid distrust at all costs. Below are some actionable ways you can make your website more trustworthy.
1. Good Design
This really is so important and can make a huge difference in your sales. Your website truly is your “digital first impression.” Think about it like this. Imagine you’re walking down the street and you are looking for a place to get something to eat. Do you go into the place that has a broken window, dust everywhere, lights flickering and with a strong odor leaking out of it? Or, do you go to the restaurant that has a beautiful sign, super clean, a modern look and open windows that is inviting to people walking by?
If you are like 99% of people I am going to guess the latter. The same principals should be applied to your website. In today’s world, there just isn’t an excuse for having a poorly design website. It is something that we specialize in. Below is a great example of a before and after for a client of ours.
Here are some quick tips on how you can design for trust:
1. Avoid paragraphs with all caps
2. Choose a font that is easy to read
3. Make sure you don’t have any typos or poor grammar
4. Don’t use tacky stock images
5. Keep the layout of your website simple with negative space to breathe
6. Use clear Calls to Action so your visitors know what you want them to do
7. Make sure your site is responsive, meaning it looks good on all devices.
Ah personality, we all love people with a personality. Your website should have a personality as well. When a visitor comes to your site, they want to feel like they are in good hands. From a purely visual aspect people want to know that you care about your business but also that everything is going to be ok when they make that purchase.
This can be done with design, messaging and content. Let’s look at an example.
If you haven’t seen their video, it is a must watch and has over 23 million views! They solve a problem with using humor. Also, they have a clear call to action “START WITH A FREE TRIAL OF ANY RAZOR” and you don’t have to dig around their site to figure out what they are offering. Their design is modern but simple. They take full advantage of less is more. This helps build trust right out of the gate.
Beyond having a stunning design and personality you need to make sure that your website loads fast (Google penalizes websites that load slow ), is secure by installing an SSL certificate and that all of the information on your website is current.
A simple way to do this is to go through you contact pages, old blog posts and product descriptions and verify that everything current. I also recommend having a blog or press page that gets updated frequently so that visitors know you are still active.
4. Security Badges
Now more than ever, online shoppers are very aware of their privacy and security online. Knowing this, you will want to prominently display various security and trust badges on your site so that your visitors know you are taking the proper steps to protect them. If you have a rating from the BBB, I highly recommend adding their badge to your site.
5. Staying Active
With the popularity of social media, shoppers will research your company before they make a purchase from you. If your social media pages are non-existent or haven’t posted, liked or shared anything in a long time, this can easily break trust and send your potential customer to your competitor. An easy way to fix this is to have a blog on your website where you post about your industry and company. Once you have made a post, simple share this on your social media pages.
6. Contact Information
There is nothing more frustrating than trying to contact a business and not being able to easily find their contact information. If you want people to trust your business, you do not want to make it difficult for them to contact you. Beyond contact forms, I highly recommend installing a chat software on your website. This allows customers to get their questions answered instantly by you or your team and in turn, convert them into a paying customer.
I highly recommend Olark. We use it on all of our websites and it’s super easy to get up and running.
Those are the 6 tips I have to make your website more trustworthy. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment or shoot me a message.