Build credibility for your website and boost conversion rate!

Sales and doing business online are on the rise once again so with many stores and sites to choose from it’s no surprise that people are more wary of which sites they interact with. Trust signals help a customer’s decision to do business with you.

When we look at what exactly trust signals are, we’re referring to the elements of a site that may not be obvious on first glance to a visitor. Some trust signals offer more value than others. In this article, we’ll cover the important trust factors that all businesses should incorporate into their website.


Business contact information

Customers having an easily accessible way to contact you is essential. It shouldn’t be a difficult process to find your enquiry page or ask a question about your products or services. Clear signals to direct a user to ask for more information should be clearly labelled. You can do this by adding a link from your main menu or with a graphic banner that gives a CTA (call to action).

It’s ideal too to have a link somewhere in your footer area that links to a dedicated contact page. Here, you want to include an enquiry form, telephone numbers and business address. It’s not essential you include your email address as a mail to: link if you have a form. Because users can submit an enquiry via the available form. It’s not recommended to have your email listed as a text link because SPAM bots can read this and send you unwanted junk mail. It’s also good practice to protect all your sites forms with reCAPTCHA.

Having accessible contact information displayed on your website provides a clear trust signal. For businesses that operate solely online, they must ensure their customers can reach them in case of any queries or concerns. Otherwise, the authenticity of your business reputation can be damaged and encourage users to take their custom elsewhere.


Social profiles

Having an active social media page with links to your website and information about your companies news and updates is another important trust signal. For the trust factor, users want to see you’re an ‘active’ business. So if you’re regularly posting to your social media profiles people are more likely to connect with you.

Your social media links should be displayed on your site in the form of icon links. A feed API is ideal as it keeps your content fresh and saves you time duplicated any news or updates to your site.

Many businesses don’t have the time or content writing experience to manage their own profiles on a regular basis. It’s a good idea to hire a marketing specialist or agency to help you with this. It should be a worthwhile investment for the potential new customers and business you can attract with these popular social media platforms.


Reviews

Online customer reviews are probably the top trust signal for any business online. They are usually the first thing users look for when establishing to make a connection to a business. They want to understand other people’s buying or service experience to help them make an informed decision.

Displaying your customer reviews on your website is essential to building trust with your customers. It shows too, that you are a business that is open to what people have to say about you. Responding to reviews shows that you are highly involved with your customers and that their opinions about your services matter to you.

You can fetch customer reviews across many platforms online but Google reviews are highly recommended because this can help show business credibility in search results. Whatever platforms you choose, ensure the reviews are displayed on your website with a link to your profile pages to show legitimacy.


Trust badges

Safety from malware, malicious code, phishing scams and protecting data are all top concerns for online shoppers. Showing logos from well know trusted brands on your site signals trust to users. They build confidence to do business with you because of the association and assures them you are keen to protect their data.

An example of protecting user information is with SSL. An SSL certificate installed to your website shows HTTPS and a green padlock in the URL address bar. This informs users site data sent from your website is secured with an encrypted connection.

If your website is not protected by SSL and handles any user data from online orders to general enquiries you should have SSL installed. It’s also worth mentioning Google now ranks sites with SSL higher in search results. So, if you have an SEO campaign active ensure SSL is active and configured properly.

ssl websites


Site policies

Your website should display information about your businesses terms and conditions, data privacy, legal standards and cookies. These are normally separate pages on your website to let your visitors and customers know how you’ll process their data, what information you collect and how it is protected.

With the updated Data Protection Act GDPR coming into effect May 2018, a privacy policy document on your site is an absolute must. It must clearly explain what privacy practices you have in place. And offer an opportunity for them to request the data you hold about them.

If your site is using Cookies (most websites do), then you also need to let users know what cookies they are and why you’re using them. Your website manager or agency can help you find out which cookies your site is using.


Conclusion

In today’s digital world of SPAM, phishing and personal data leaks, more and more users are conscious of which sites they use and access.

Incorporating the above trust signals to your website will help build your business credibility. This can improve conversions. If you have any of the essential elements above missing from your site, take urgent action to build your trust factor.

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Emma McDonald Contributor
Emma has over 23 years digital expertise. With an eye for clean and intuitive design, she produces beautifully designed websites. As lead Web Designer, Developer and SEO strategist, her knowledge is translated through carefully managed marketing campaigns to help businesses accomplish their goals online.