It doesn't matter whether you are a B2B or B2C company; your customers and prospects must trust you.
That's what inbound and content marketing is all about, and your website plays a huge role in building trust. Your site may be their first interaction with your company, so make sure you set yourself up as a business they can trust.
But how do you do that?
1. Don't Over-Promise
Businesses are often tempted to use their website as bait to lure potential customers in and work things out once they have a visitor's information. Don't do this! If you do not offer a service, don't advertise it. Or, if you cannot follow through on an offer, don't talk about it on your website. For example, don't advertise free shipping all over the site, only to tell customers at the last page of your online checkout system that the free shipping is only valid for members, and only for orders only over a certain payment amount, and only for select items.
This is ultimately part of being a trustworthy business in general. Customers don't appreciate a bait and switch, so treat them with respect and be upfront about what you are offering. Transparency is key.
2. Display Customer Testimonials
Online reviews or testimonials influence nine out of ten consumers, and 88% of people consider an online review from a stranger to be as trustworthy as a personal recommendation. This means that displaying customer testimonials on your website is one of the best ways to drive business. One caveat: they have to be real reviews, so don't just write up something yourself or pay somebody to give you a positive review.
Luckily, this is easier than you might think. Current satisfied customers are usually happy to provide a testimonial if you ask, and it's easy to set up an online survey that you can direct happy clients to. Keep the survey short, so you don't take up too much of their time — they are doing you a favour. It's usually enough to ask them to rate your customer service, their overall experience, and the quality of your product or service. Then, provide them with a comment box where they can write up their review.
3. Be Professional
If you want to position yourself as a trusted professional in your industry, you have to act accordingly. This is a time that you must remember that many people judge a book by its cover, and in this instance, your site is the cover. If you have an outdated or poorly designed website, visitors will be unimpressed by your company and assume that you are not professional enough to earn their business. So, make sure that your website has a clean, attractive design that is easy to navigate and looks professionally done.
Content matters as well. Typos, spelling mistakes, and poor grammar are not professional and do not encourage visitors to trust your business. After all, if you cannot even publish a proper sentence, how can they trust you to take care of their needs? If web design and copy writing are not your speciality, enlist help. Find a professional web designer or proofreader to help.
4. Provide Great Content
Unsurprisingly, content marketing needs great content. Customers will not engage with an empty website, so provide them with information that they can use. Be helpful and authoritative, and they will begin to trust your business as a source of reliable information in the industry. That is the ultimate goal of content marketing: providing useful information that positions you as a thought leader and the resource for whatever you are selling. Make sure the information you provide is accurate and complete, and don't settle for the bare minimum. It's a good idea to start a blog and update it at least twice a month.
Your website is the first place many prospects will interact with your business, so it's important to make a good first impression and position yourself as a trusted thought leader.
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