23 Aug 5 key factors that influence trust on a website
As per my previous article customer trust is vital when it comes to converting website traffic into paying customers or even prospective potential customers (prospects as we call them in the trade). So when a visitor lands on your front page the first thing they are looking for is:
1/ Familiarity – since they have never been to your web page before they need to find familiarity by seeing things where they expect to you know logo top left, menu services etc what some people feel is “samey” can also be called “familiar” and is therefore a good thing most of the time not a bad thing. As always there exceptions to this rule; if you run a whacky “out there” type of organization then your customers might be expecting to actually find things whacky and unfamiliar but its nearly always better to put that sort of creative stuff in a specially organised place rather than just dropping people into an unfamiliar environment. It’s always a bad idea to surprise people when you want to achieve something quickly and trust is just one of those things that is undone by surprises, good or bad.
2/ Quality – and there is a caveat here which is “appropriate” quality. If you are selling a low cost service you don’t misinterpret quality as trying to be too smart for your audience, it’s important to build and design a website appropriately. If I’m looking for a cost effective garden shed I’m not likely to choose one that seems to have been hand built by Robin hood with King Richard the Lionheart’s favourite English oak tree. Equally I’m probably not going to choose one that looks like it’s being stored in the back of a lockup and may have fallen off the back of the local DIY shops budget range delivery van. So make sure your website feels appropriate in terms of quality and the best judge of that is a Marketing expert who can help you with the combining of the design, content and functionality elements to achieve this objective.
3/ Authority – You say you are good at what you do but why would anyone believe you? One of the ways to instill some authority behind your claims is to bring in references to organisations that represent your industry like an institute or “good business practices” like for example the FSB (federation of Small Business) . There are often local council schemes such as buy with confidence that offer additional reassurance. Training and qualifications where relevant also offer additional reassurance and confidence to customers and not forgetting the CRB checks that you make a you an assured person to bring into someone’s home.
4/ Testimonials – Nothing says you’re good at what you do better than a testimonial from another customer so make sure they are easy to find and cover sufficient breadth of services. If you can get pictures or videos all the better. There are some great web tools now to cost effectively facilitate the collection of testimonials well worth a look particularly if you deal with a lot of customers.
5/ Authenticity – Keep it real, don’t overstate your capabilities or claim credit for work you haven’t really ben responsible for. In the end over-claiming will show through and it undermines buyer confidence dramatically. Make sure your business has a real address and contact details so it’s clear you are available at all times. You might think a mobile is sufficient but a customer is thinking “where’s my comeback if something goes wrong?” Alleviate these fears by being easy to get hold of.
So that’s a brief summary of some critical trust factors that out to be integrated into your website development if you want to help customers make that all important conversion decision. It’s not the be all and end all for website conversion. There are still some hugely important factors not covered here and you need to get those right too. We’re always ready to help clients understand how their current website performs so please do give us a call if you would like our web development team to look at yours.