Seven Ways to Create a Trustworthy Website
Someone once said that you only get one chance to make a first impression. That adage applies to a company’s website as well.
Visitors can usually tell within the first few seconds whether they want to stay on a site. If a site doesn’t appear reputable or trustworthy, then visitors will quickly leave without visiting a second page.
E-commerce sites especially have to pay attention to how their site may be perceived. Visitors will be wary of making a purchase if they perceive the site as untrustworthy or unprofessional. Luckily, there are several things you can do to boost confidence and trust in your site. Below, are seven things you can do to create a more trustworthy website.
1) Provide Social Proof
Social proof plays a big role in building trust. Testimonials are one form of social proof. Testimonials are a great way to build trust because people can see that other people have used a product or service and were happy with it. You can obtain testimonials by reaching out to customers or clients and request feedback to use on your site. You can also try including a photo of your client. This will help support the authenticity of the testimonial.
The use of partner logos is another form of social proof. This can especially be helpful if you’ve worked with a well-known brand. However, the logos of unknown brands can be helpful in building trust as well.
Other forms of social proof include posting news stories about your company, the number of years you’ve been in business, and using a widget to show the number of social media followers you have.
2) Provide a Secure Website
With recent stories of security breaches and loss of data in the news, visitors are more aware than ever of website security. They’re becoming much more cautious regarding their online activities.
Website visitors want to know their personal information is secure when they fill out contact information or make purchases on your site. One way to let your customers know your site is safe is by adding a security seal to your site. You can get a security seal by getting an SSL certificate or secure certificate. The seal verifies that a site is, in fact, who they’re claiming to be. The seal can provide visitors with the assurance that they’re on a reputable site when they visit your website.
3) Make Sure Your Website is Up-to-Date
When a visitor comes to your site, chances are they’re looking for a product, service, or information. What they don’t want to find is outdated content. It’s important to make sure the content on your site is up-to-date. This includes contact and product information. It can help to set aside some time each week to review the content on your site and make updates as needed.
4) Have a Well-Designed Site
Your website is a reflection of your company. A well-designed site will appear more professional and it will instill more confidence and trust in visitors.
Shopify contributor, Tucker Schreiber, recommends thinking of your website like a storefront. Imagine if you were walking down the street and saw two storefronts. One had a cracked window and a faded sign. The other had a well-lit and well-designed sign as well as a beautiful display in the storefront window. Which store would you want to go inside? Which one would instill greater trust and confidence? Apply that same reasoning to your website. When visitors come to your site, the design and layout of your site should compel them to want to stay not leave and go to another site.
5) Use Authentic Images
While there’s nothing wrong with using stock photos for certain parts of your site, authentic images will make your website seem more personal. Visitors don’t want to feel like they’re just dealing with a robot or machine when they visit your site. They want to feel like there are humans on the other side. Too many stock photos can make a site seem impersonal. Instead of stock photos, try using images of actual employees on your “About” or “Contact” pages.
6) Proofread Your Site
Nothing can erode visitor trust quite like grammar or spelling errors. Grammar and spelling errors can give the appearance of unprofessionalism. It can also give the impression that the website owner or content writer doesn’t care. There are plenty of tools available to help with spelling. Grammar, on the other hand, can be more of a challenge for some people. If grammar isn’t your strong suit, consider hiring a professional copyrighter or freelance proofreader to check your work.
7) Provide Easy-to-Find Contact Information
Providing easy-to-find contact information relates back to tip # 5. Visitors want to feel like they’re dealing with real human beings when they visit your site. If they have a question about your product or service, they want to know how to contact you. In addition to seeming impersonal, a lack of contact information can give the impression that a website is not associated with a legitimate business. If contact information is not clear or easy to find, visitors may feel uncomfortable providing personal information or making purchases.
Photo credit: HubSpot