Four Conversion Optimization posts down, two to go! Today I’m going to be talking about establishing trust and confidence in your potential customers. Have you ever landed on a website with terrible, flashy design work that hurts your eyes? How about a site without SSL? Inputting your credit card number into sites that seem immature doesn’t make consumers feel good. Personally, I bounce off a site right away if I get the impression that the transaction will be insecure or complicated.
The bottom line- people don’t want to give you payment information unless they trust your website. Building trust is done in four steps. The first step is awareness. People cannot trust you if they don’t know you exist. Awareness can be ramped up with online marketing and SEO efforts. The next step is knowledge. As soon as potential customers are aware of your existence make sure they understand who you are and why you’re a better alternative to a bigger name. This can be done via a value proposition, which is a statement that you come up with based on what you offer and what your customers expect from you. Value propositions should be clearly displayed and built into every element of your website to constantly remind visitors that you are unique.
Once you’ve established your existence and that you are unique and valuable visitors will decide whether or not they like you. Keeping your design clean and consistent does this and you should also ensure that all of the questions a visitor has about your site are answered. Finally, if you make it through awareness, knowledge, and your visitors like you, you will earn their trust. Feels good, doesn’t it?
Establishing trust and maintaining trust are two different things. Customers may decide that they like you enough to make a purchase, but if they are dissatisfied with the product or the level of customer service and support that they receive the chance that they will become repeat customers diminishes greatly. Don’t just focus on getting people through your sales funnel, focus on delivering quality products and services to ensure that people come back to your site and tell others about it as well.
I’ll wrap this post up with some words from the wise on Social Media. When new visitors are trying to decide whether or not they like you they will often search for your company or products on social media. Take the time to make sure that you have some sort of framework in place for social media. I’m not saying that you need to have Jared Ewy slaving away at Twitter and Facebook all day and all night (thank you!), but make sure that someone in your organization has their thumb on the pulse of social media. You’ll often find it helpful to know what your customers and potential customers are getting worked up about. Knowing what your company’s external image looks like can be enlightening.