“They Gotta Have Faith”
Website Credibility – A How-To Guide (Pt1)
Trust is the foundation of civilization and the enabler of commerce. Abuse your customers’ trust and you will quickly have no business.
Trust can be based on a handshake, a contract, or, best of all, a solid reputation.
What’s obvious, crucial, and yet very often overlooked is that for there to be any chance for a transaction, first there must be trust.
“…Only with trust will buyers let your communications pass their filters and enter their lives…”
Your Credibility Hinges on Your Website
Your website is the most important projection of your reputation into the virtual world, although if you happen to be a strongly B2C-oriented operation, your social profiles might be no less important.
Let’s break that statement down for a minute and realize one simple truth –
To build ANY credibility with your audience, YOU MUST HAVE AN EXCELLENT WEBSITE.
How Can a Website Establish Trust?
That’s a question we have to answer every single time we launch a new client project, but thankfully, over the years, we’ve picked up a few tricks that I’m happy to share here…
There are 3 fundamental requirements your website needs to meet in order to even have a chance at generating any credibility:
1) Being Honest
Make it supremely easy to understand WITHIN SECONDS what your website is about, and what you want your audience to DO (buy, join, share, etc.).
2) Working. Well.
A bug on your website reflects on your commitment to excellence. Plain and simple. That said, the reality is all websites suffer the occasional bug. Leaving them unfixed, however, is inexcusably sloppy. A related issue is performance: Make sure your pages load quickly and correctly across all common devices and browsers.
3) The Value of Craftsmanship
We’ve all experienced the pleasure of witnessing masterful craftsmanship, and we naturally ascribe positive qualities to the person or team responsible for the work. This applies online no less than it does offline.
If you can’t honestly say your website meets the 3 criteria above, you have a serious problem. Even when you succeed via advertising, etc., to drive traffic to your site, you’re basically only creating churn. Your ever-more-distracted audience will quickly lose faith in your less-than-credible-site and click on elsewhere, making waste of your marketing budget… Pity no?