How Much is Trust Worth for Your Small Business?

When a potential customer visits your small business website for the first time, there are several factors that can help them from along the sale conversion process… but one factor you won’t make the sale without is trust.

In an era of corporate scandal and betrayal, trust has quickly become a rare commodity. A recent international study showed that business leaders (CEOs) are considered less trustworthy than even government officials, and trailing them are the oft-maligned media outlets. The prevalence of new scams has consumers worried about pulling out their credit cards and purchasing online.

How do you convince your customer that you aren’t just there to make a quick buck?

Increase trust and reassure your customers with these 5 steps:

1. Let Them Know Who You Are
Create an “About Us” page that describes your story. A little bit of personality goes a long way – people like to buy from people! Add appropriate photos of yourself or your team, and your physical store if you have one. Here is a great example of a business that uses their “About Us” page to let consumers know they probably won’t be disappearing anytime soon.

2. Display Awards, Trade Association Badges and Security Certificates
If your business has garnered any recognition or if you are a member of any respected trade association, proudly show the emblems or logos on every page. Display third party security seals and use security certificates to lessen fears and increase conversions.

3. Testimonials
In the same way customers want to know who you are, they also want to know who is buying from you. Don’t be afraid of reaching out to happy customers who have sung your praises and asking for their permission to reproduce their comments (you can even offer a bonus). Some sites will even post pictures of their customers.

4. Risk-Free Trial
Build consumer confidence by offering a “no-risk” purchase. Research has shown that (risk) free offers increase sales – think of it as a security blanket. Invite new customers to “examine it, try it, use it for a full 30 days without risk”. If you are guaranteeing customer satisfaction scream it from the rooftops! This is a great asset in your unique selling proposition that you don’t want to hide.

5. Make Contact Easy
People don’t want to buy from someone who will disappear – you want potential customers firing questions your way, before and after the sale. Make sure your phone number and email address are prominently displayed on all marketing materials, as well as in your email signature. Have a “contact us” footer at the bottom of each page.

Remember, trustworthiness directly relates to your bottom line. This is why “mom and pop” stores often experience great success with their direct, straightforward approach. Start using these five easy tactics today to increase your trust and sales!