One of the most important aspects an online business can learn is that in order to increase sales and conversions, a website will need to gain the trust of a visitor. There is an immense amount of competition for any consumer looking to purchase online and often what will separate one website from another will not be price – it will be trust.
But how does a website build trust?
The first thing a visitor sees when they land on a website is the design and appearance. If the website looks low-quality – with ugly flashing advertisements, overload of Google Adsense and a cheap looking template – a visitor will instantly assume that whatever they are selling is also likely to be junk.
First appearance is everything. A website needs to look professional and relevant. No advertisement overloads, no content segmented with textual ads and a clean, crisp graphical interface. The initial challenge is convincing a visitor that the website is reputable and trustworthy.
Buying online still has some stigma attached and many people are wary of giving payment details. If a website is not wearing its best business suit and offering a friendly handshake, a visitor will not be parting with their credit card details.
2. Relevant Content
Once the professional appearance of the website has persuaded a visitor the website is worth further investigation, the next item they will look at is the actual content.
Firstly, if the website is listed in a search engine as selling baby clothes and a visitor arrives to find the site sells DVDs – they are gone… and will not return. Lying about what a site sells, or manipulating search engine search results will not build trust.
A website should be built around a specific market or niche. If the idea is to sell shoes and dog collars, it is better to create two separate websites, which concentrate on each market, than try to combine the two.
The content should offer something useful to a visitor and should appear topical and informational. A website that has content which appears to be truthful, reliable and educational will inspire trust from readers. People are not looking to buy a ‘mystery prize’, they want to see what they are getting and need to be assured that they will actually receive the product they purchase. This is where the trust factor plays such an important part.
3. Quality at All Cost
A website is only as good as the product it sells. If a site sells rubbish, that is the reputation it can expect. Bad news spreads fast on the internet and any website that tries to peddle fake goods, B-grade products as perfect quality and anything that is not as promised, will soon be found out and ‘blacklisted’. Poor quality websites regularly receive negative feedback at consumer protection websites and forums.
But this also works both ways. Any website that offers great value, quality products and good after-sales service may benefit from a positive review, or mention on a topic-related community forum. A word-of-mouth recommendation is a huge trust builder.
A website should believe in what it sells. If a site knows the products it sells will be beneficial, and the solution to a visitor’s needs, then that will come across in the content and demeanor of the site. It is far easier to sell when you do not have to lie about the product.
Trust Can Last a Long Time
These three factors all go towards building trust and authority for a website. People can be creatures of habit and once they know a website is trustworthy, they will nearly always return for future custom. Trust will not only increase the likelihood of a current sale, it will be instrumental for providing future sales as well.
About the author: This article is written by Roko Nastic from WebmasterFormat.com – place where webmasters go to master the ever changing web and to find the best web hosts.