Want More Online Sales? Build Trust. Here’s How.

Want more online sales? Build Trust. Here's how.

Brand Trust is a challenge for nearly every single business in the world today. No matter what industry you’re in, many organisations are witnessing a decline in consumer trust — large, more established corporations and institutions in particular.

Trust is the first principle of conversion. No factor is more influential to online conversions than brand trust. Being able to establish trust with your audience, before you ask them to pull their credit card out is the most critical thing you can focus on.

As consumers, we have a right to be sceptical. Today’s digital world is full of misleading privacy practices, predatory data mining, and let’s not forget “fake news”. Further heightening this problem is that the pathway to purchase is far shorter, and more direct than it ever has been before. There are fewer landmarks and environmental cues that we can use to take stock of our situation and help us form a decision.

With the gap closing between a consumer thinking “I want,” and “I want to buy it now”, being able to establish trust on an eCommerce site or app, is paramount.

On the upside, if you’re able to get this component working correctly, you can earn a user’s trust quite quickly, and it will give your business a powerful boost. Conversely, if you get it wrong, your marketing dollars have been wasted, and you’ll only watch your competitors fly right past.

There are many ways you can establish brand trust. Here's the top 3.

  • Don’t ever forget, first impressions count.

  • You can’t do this on your own. You need Peer Support.

  • Don’t just be consistent. Be consistently great.

As consumers, we’ve moved on from relying solely on face-to-face transactions, and so too, our reliance on traditional sources of expertise. Instead, we’ve turned to the Internet as our main channel of reference.

Many businesses today don’t just have eCommerce as a side gig. It’s their main game and their primary channel to market.

So in this online-only world, how can you show consumers that your app or Website can be trusted enough to hand over their credit card information?

You see that’s another point that’s worth making.

Let’s explore an example. For instance, let’s look at a customer who is buying an item over the counter at their local bricks and mortar retail store. The retail price for the item is $20, and they pay for it using cash. The only thing that is at risk from dealing with a dodgy vendor in that scenario the $20 note itself.

But when that same customer looks to buy that same item, from that same retailer online, they’re going to be asked for their credit card information, home address for delivery, their name, maybe even date of birth as well.

So much more is at stake than just the $20 note.

The level of trust that the same customer needs to make that same transaction online is much, much higher than the level they would need in the physical world.

Because the risk of identity theft is real, and the consequences can be far more significant than burning $20.

Credit Card Fraud and Identity theft are significant issues in the world today, and this lies at the heart of the problem.

The level of trust that is required for a consumer to make a purchase online is higher. Yet, the ability for online consumers to establish any faith at all is actually lower.

Anyone with an online business needs to understand this conundrum and work tirelessly to address it.

‘How can you, as a business builder of an App or a Website, establish brand trust?’ is a crucial question that’s important at any time of year, but at the time of writing this article, it’s now mid-September 2020. Given the events of this year that has affected nearly every business on the planet, maximising online sales throughout the final quarter (Oct-Dec) has never been a more significant opportunity, or more critical.

As a business, we have a great partnership with Shopify, and they’ve helped to provide us with some insights on what business owners can do to establish brand trust better.

First Impressions Count

Call your UX designer and start the conversation now, because the professional quality of your Website or app design is an essential factor in building brand trust. Every customer is looking for human-centred design, with a digital asset that helps to add value to their lives. Having a frictionless User Experience (UX) is critical. After you’ve called, your design team get on the phone to your IT team and make sure the level of performance and security that you are offering is going to reassure your users. Your ability to show empathy to your users and to make your customer experience as frictionless as possible is so important. However, you need to also to remember, building a trustworthy asset takes time.

You Need Peer Support

Online we tend to trust other people more than we trust a brand or company. So we look to the recommendations, reviews, and experiences of our fellow shoppers as a means to try and establish a level of trust in any particular brand.

This phenomenon has become so profound in recent years, that it has spawned an entire global industry. Influencer Marketing is growing fast and is a result of (rather than a contributor to) the brand trust crisis.

Be Consistently Great

The most important thing any business can do is to make every effort to be consistently great with all of their brand’s creative, content and communication, across all of your touchpoints.

No, we’re not marketing wankers, and we don’t believe in jargon.

But we do believe in that statement, so let’s break it down.

(and I’ll ask for your forgiveness ahead of time for this crap analogy, but it does make the point)

If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck …it might be a duck. Sounds stupidly simple I know. But its how we think as humans. And, it’s how we build trust in something that we don’t yet understand.

Your brand’s touchpoints are all of the different angles that your customers will use so they can form an opinion of you.

Visiting your Website, opening your Email, going to your Facebook page, Instagram page, a Pinterest account, Google Search Results, Google Reviews, Your LinkedIn Profile, your employee’s LinkedIn Profiles, your Marketplace presence, and other Review sites. The list goes on and on and on. Then let’s not forget every single ad you create and run also forms part of this mix.

The more consistent you can be, the more success you’ll have in building trust.

But don’t just settle for being consistent, …be consistently excellent. Have a plan for how you are going to do that and use it. Some of the best strategies ever developed are gathering dust on the shelf. If your Creative and Content system is overly complicated, you won’t use it every day. It’s more important that you have something that quickly understood and implemented by everyone working on your business, then to have a complex encyclopedia that no-one wants to touch.

Make it fun. Make it quickly understood. On point, and consistently excellent.