Build Trust, How to Build Trust with Web Design

How to Build Trust with Web Design

Build Trust, How to Build Trust with Web Design

When it comes to establishing trust, it doesn’t matter how compelling your calls-to-action are, how engaging your content is, or how quickly your pages load on mobile screens. If visitors to your site have any doubts about how trustworthy you are, they’ll bounce right out and never come back. Studies have shown that businesses have as little as 6 seconds to create a positive first impression on website users and that the way a website is designed plays a role in this decision. Research shows that the best website design is founded around key principles that build trust. Having said that, the opposite is also true – bad design can quickly erode trust.

So, what is it that makes one website more trustworthy than another? The data doesn’t offer any definitive answers, but there are plenty of principles you can take right now to maximise the impression of trustworthiness that your website exudes. That’s why in this blog post I will explore key principles that help instil and built trust. Here are  the eight tactics you can try on your website:

01: Protect their privacy

02: Provide social proof via testimonials

03: Showcase your prices (if possible)

04: Showoff your client’s logos

05: Switch to https

06: Update your blog OFTEN

07: Have a solid mobile website design

08: Remember to behave as expected

Build Trust, How to Build Trust with Web Design

01: Protect their privacy

In a time where identity theft and the leaking of sensitive information have become all too common, it’s smart to build trust is to reassure customers that their private data will remain secure when they do business with you. This can be done by creating a Privacy Policy. Often, having this peace of mind will help turn potential customers into actual paying customers. Just make sure that you stick to your word and never disclose any information that you shouldn’t.

Privacy Policies provide a brief statement saying that you won’t share any private information of your customer to third parties and the like.

It’s also useful to note that Google looks to see whether sites have privacy policies as part of their manual quality evaluations, so this should be a minimum step for anyone doing business or publishing online.

02: Provide social proof via testimonials

Sometimes, all a potential customer needs to get over trust concerns is a little reassurance from previous customers. By tangibly proving the value of your products or services and how they have improved the lives of previous customers, you should see increased conversion rates. 

Testimonials from satisfied customers can go a long way toward eliminating any last-minute scepticism. It adds another human element that helps to break through the walls that people typically put up when browsing the web.

This is one of the biggest ways to build trust in your products and services. If you can display a number of people who are willing to provide documented quotes, endorsing your business, it attests to the quality of your work. 

Build trust by taking advantage of the fact that many people have the “me too” mentality. When you show that you’ve solved some of the same problems other people have had using your products or services, they want the same results. When they identify with one of the people from the testimonials section of your site, they realise that your services can solve their problems, which typically leads to a sale. 

Read a related article about how to sweeten the offer with social proof.

03: Showcase your prices (if possible)

Studies have shown the consumers want to see prices of products and services. Even a price range is sufficient but many business owners have reasons why they prefer to not include pricing. Setting that aside, let’s take a look at reasons to SAY YES to showcasing your prices.

Showing your prices is quickly becoming an industry standard for a reason. One of the reasons is that it helps establish trust with your customer. It makes you look like you have a structured and legitimate process with intentional pricing. It also puts your viewer at ease because there are no surprises. They will know what to expect even before they contact you. Another reason is to introduce filter out the chaff from the wheat. Customers who can’t afford your services or products will leave your website and not waste your sales team’s time.

Do you want to spend time convincing people on the phone that they can afford you when they really think they can’t or don’t see the value you are offering?

It’s hard to have phone calls with people who have unrealistic expectations because they don’t know the fees. Trying to convince them is a hard-sell tactic that I recommend you avoid. Build trust and showcase your prices and soon you’ll start attracting the right customers who can afford to do business with you.

04: Showoff your client’s logos

Displaying the logos of clients you have worked with helps you be seen as an authority. When these visitors see that other important visitors have been successful because of your service, they too won’t think twice about ordering. The reason for this is that when business owners see that you’ve helped other businesses, and those businesses are recognised as being successful, people want to have the same success. They want the same results those established businesses have. 

However, there’s a caveat here. Some companies do not display client logos for fear that their competitors may poach their clients. So displaying client logos doesn’t go down all too well in every industry, especially the SEO industry.

Nothing builds trust as much as your work history. If you already have a proven track record, you are more likely to gain new business because it shows that you have experience and a trusted reputation among your clients.

05: Switch to https

About 85% of shoppers avoid unencrypted sites, and some browsers like Google Chrome show a specific “not secure” message when users fill out forms over HTTP instead of HTTPS. It can alarm your customers if you don’t encrypt their data, as over 50% of the web is now encrypted. Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP, the application protocol over which data is sent between your browser and the website that you are connected to. It’s the foundation of data communication on the internet! Encrypting your website connection with HTTPS is a new prerequisite for building trust in a viewer.

On 6 August 2014, Google made the announcement regarding making https a ranking signal. So there’s a little boost for being completely https. So, not only are you boosting your rankings with a secured site but also you’re doing a favour for your site visitors by providing them with a secure environment to do their transactions. Make sure your site is secure on every page. This includes images and other elements you embed within your webpages. 

06: Update your blog OFTEN

Update your blog often and build trust not only with your customers but with search engines as well.

When it comes to blogging, consistency trumps frequency every time. Consistency talks to how reliable you are and that talks to how trustworthy you’ll be. Set up a regular blogging schedule and soon your visitors will know to expect new material at those intervals. They’ll come back to look for your latest post. As an added bonus, search engines will give your website a higher preference because a website that is regularly updated is seen as an authoritative and credible website within the given industry it represents.

Make your blog updates a priority, consistently provide quality blog posts that build trust and you’ll see returns in the form of more traffic and increased sales.

07: Have a Solid MOBILE Website Design

A website with bad design, confusing navigation and poor content can turn visitors away from your business faster than a house on fire. Conversely, an intuitive and appealing website can make visitors stay longer, increasing the chances of conversion. Having a responsive and mobile-friendly website is of utmost importance. A responsive website adapts to the screen size and device it is being viewed on so it looks great regardless if you’re using a mobile phone, tablet, or desktop. More than eight in 10 internet users will use a mobile device to access the web regularly this year, according to a forecast by eMarketer.

Nearly 15% of internet users, or 40.7 million individuals, will only surf the web via a mobile device (and this number is only expected to grow).

As a bonus tip, your website needs to be visually appealing and designed with your users in mind. Make it easy for your visitors to browse your website by using simple navigation, readable fonts and colour combinations, interesting graphics and appropriate white space. To complement your design, your website content should be well written, engaging and helpful to your target audience. 

08: Remember to behave as expected

There really is something to following norms, especially on the web. A design should look unique, for sure, but the website should conform to the ways of the internet. Shaun Cronin emphasizes in his article on TutsPlus that when things function as expected, we feel more comfortable; it creates confidence and a sense of familiarity – aspects that are essential for trust.

A few of these functionalities include clicking on the site’s logo to go back to the homepage, email confirmations for signing up, filters to make searches more tailored. And a huge biggie is that a site contains no broken links. Even just one broken link can put a small hole in the user’s trust that eventually spirals into moving onto a competitor’s site.  Another important factor in helping to make the site behave properly is with quick load times. Make sure to balance the pizazz in the design – those elements that can hinder load time – with how quickly a customer can open a website and then navigate through it.

Don’t clutter the visual design or visitors will struggle to trust the website.

Cam Secore on Moz.com urges us all to really pay attention to the details, such as white space, which is directly related to readability, a factor that he says “impacts perceptions of trustworthiness.” Read a related article on how best to balance white space to get a good website design that is good for business.

THE BOTTOM LINE

As you saw above, building a trustworthy website takes a lot of effort in the right direction.

Building trust with your audience starts before you ever come into contact with them. People judge brands based on their research and how they connect with a company’s website, so it’s important to take the time to see your site from your potential customer’s point of view. You need your website to establish your credibility or you risk visitors bouncing back to the search engine results and losing them forever.

Consult with your web designer to implement the above tips when you build and optimise your website. By boosting your company’s credibility, your potential customers will feel safer interacting with you and be more receptive to your products and services.

Building trust online starts with a great website. 

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