Trustworthy. Reliable. Credible. These are all words people want associated with their business. However, these are not qualities that can be acquired over night; they require years of hard work and dedication. Don’t let that dissuade you – the steps to establishing and promoting trust are quite simple.
How to Establish Trust Through Your Website
Building trust through real world relationships is one thing, but trying to establish the same level of trust online is a horse of a different color – your in-person charm and flexible demeanor have little to no clout on the Internet. So, how do you position yourself as trustworthy, reliable, and credible through your website?
Be authentic. Talk with your audience – not at them.
In April 2016, Pew Research Center confirmed that Millennials have surpassed Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation. Regardless of the sentiments and stereotypes that associated with the term “Millennials,” you can’t deny that they are a growing majority of consumers. Millennials have become THE audience to impress if you wish to stay in business, and they will probably maintain that status for at least three more decades. Erin McPherson, Maker Studios’ chief content officer, succinctly described the major shift that advertisers need to adapt to: “This generation doesn’t dislike brands…what they don’t like is advertising… The new authority is authenticity.”
Actively maintain a blog, news section, or both.
Blogs and “Latest News” sections verify two distinct qualities of your business:
- You keep your content fresh and up-to-date.
- You are an industry leader, which is proven by your constant stream of useful information and relevant insights.
These parts of your website don’t just establish trust with your audience, but they also establish trust with Google. Google sees “high-quality pages” as pages that display a high level of Expertise/Authoritativeness/Trustworthiness (E-A-T), and your blogs/news items will indicate all three of those qualities, as long as you keep it up-to-date.
Your customers are people – talk to them like it.
According to the 2016 Edelman Trust Barometer, people are more trusting of their peers than they are of company CEOs. Your content has to be more than just one giant sales pitch, because this generation will see right through you. When you offer useful, relevant content that your customers actually want, you can build relationships that keep them coming back.
Show that consumers do, in fact, trust you.
You know how people ask for the “why behind the what,” or say “don’t tell me, show me?”
Add testimonials from real customers and proudly link to 3rd party review sites. Share stats and offer in-depth case studies so people can see the results you produced that inspired trust. You can also add logos from either clients you’ve impressed or from awards you have received; these all underline that fact that you deliver on the promises you make.
More Than Just Sales Conversions
When it comes to conversion rates, trust plays a massive role. Besides giving you “the warm fuzzies” and producing more sales, a trustworthy reputation will deliver conversions in other areas of your business that you may not have considered:
- Loyal customers that believe in you and your company. They’ll tell people about that.
- More qualified leads will come your way, because individuals will feel like a real relationship can be established with you.
- You’ll get better applicants and new hires as your company grows. People will submit applications even if you have no positions currently available because they genuinely like and appreciate what your company does.
So, go forth and continue to be the ultimate people person – just remember to bring that candidness and understanding to your online presence, too.