Building a website is easy, but building a website that people will trust is not as simple. To make your website more trustworthy, there are some things that you should commit to.
Before we review the list of tips for creating a reliable website, let us first establish a definition of what we mean by a website’s “trust”.
What does it mean for a website to be trustworthy?
A trustworthy website is one that people feel safe using. When customers have doubts about the site, they are likely to leave and never come back again.
It is important for your website to be trusted by its users. This leads us to the next question – why?
Why is it important for a website to be trustworthy?
It is important for a website to be trustworthy because a trusted website:
- Has a higher conversion rate
- Users more like to leave contact information on your forms, or make a purchase in your store
- Users more likely to turn into repeat customers/visitors
- People are more likely to share your page on social media
- Other websites are more likely link or mention your website
In short, if you want to get more leads from your website or if you want to generate more sales on your ecommerce website, your website needs to be trusted.
Regardless of the type of website you have, you would want to have a trustworthy site in order to garner and maintain the loyalty of your visitors.
Here are some tips on how you can create a trustworthy website.
1. Have a good website design
Most people prefer websites that are designed for beauty but are created for simplicity. Poor choice of colours, erroneous text and an inappropriately large amount of ads can negatively affect users’ experience on your website and make it feel scammy.
A good website design makes a difference in whether or not people will trust what they see on the site. You don’t have to be an expert web designer or spend lots of money for custom designs, but choose colours and fonts wisely so that visitors can read your website content comfortably.
In addition, structure your website in such a way that it is easy for users to navigate and find the information they need.
2. Proofread your content
Sloppy content with misspellings and poor grammar may lead to your website visitors thinking that you or your business is careless and inattentive. This is especially crucial if you are a content-based website.
If you do not care much for reading, you can consider hiring proofreaders or content editors. Your website is a reflection of your company and any errors are an indication that you are cutting corners in your practice.
3. Keep your website up to date
Keep your website regularly updated. If you are a content-based website, publish new content routinely so users know that the website is still maintained, and it also attracts users to return for the new content.
If you are an ecommerce website, ensure that your product inventory and product details are up to date. Most importantly, your contact details should be updated so customers can reach out to you.
Keeping up to date can also mean making sure your WordPress version is updated, and any plugins are updated as well.
If you need someone to maintain your website, you can consider working with companies that provide website support services.
4. Make it easy for anyone to contact you
Adding on, you should provide multiple ways for people to contact you. Make it easy for anyone to contact you by adding an email address, a phone number or even providing chat support.
To make your site more trustworthy, include all this information in the ‘Contact’ page of your website. This shows your website visitors that there is someone manning the website and is ready to support them with their enquiries.
5. Show your reviews or testimonials
If you are a B2B website, showing that you have testimonials from large companies and well known brands can help establish your reputation in the eyes of visitors.
If you are a B2C website, showing reviews you have garnered from your past customers will also help you to build your website’s credibility.
If you are a content-based website, you can show the comments of other visitors who have enjoyed your content.
Regardless of which type your website is, adding testimonials, reviews or comments to the site helps you establish trust.
6. Include an ‘About’ page
Have an ‘About’ page on your website and share pictures of you and your team on it. This helps people know who they are talking to, and the personal touch will make them feel more comfortable about your website/business.
In addition, you can share a story of how the website/business started off so people can relate to you more. This is also an opportunity for potential customers or visitors to get acquainted with you before making a purchase or an action you want them to take on your website.
7. Build a relationship with your audience
Build a relationship with your website’s audience by actively engaging with them. If you receive reviews or comments, reply to them regardless of whether they are positive or negative.
When people feel heard, they are more likely to trust you. This also allows for two-way conversations, where both parties may learn from each other and get new perspectives about issues or ideas.
8. Be active on social media
Besides having your website, it will also be helpful to maintain several social media accounts. This allows other social media users to access you or your brand more easily.
You can also gradually build your audience on social media and direct them to your website by sharing links. Remember to incorporate your social media handles in the ‘Contact’ page of the website so people can reach out to you easily.
9. Use an SSL certificate to show that your website is secure
An SSL (also known as Secure Sockets Layer) certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates a website’s identity and enables an encrypted connection over the Internet. This ensures the connection between your computer and the site will be confidential and secure.
When your website has an SSL certificate, there will be a padlock symbol in the browser’s URL address bar. The website URL will also start with HTTPS instead of HTTP.
If your website does not have an SSL certificate, visitors may be prompted with a warning message by their browser when they try to access your site.
When users recognise that your website has an SSL certificate, it will help to establish the credibility of your website with visitors who may not know you or your brand. Thus, it is crucial for websites that handle sensitive information, such as ecommerce websites that handle payment information, to have an SSL certificate. (https://deanloh.com/blog/what-is-ssl-and-why-should-you-care/)
10. Add trust badges, certifications and awards
To improve the trustworthiness of your website, consider displaying badges from third party companies or associations like a Trust Seal from Trust Guard. This shows your visitors that the website is routinely scanned for security vulnerabilities. This also reduces the chances of your website being hacked.
If you or your business has received certifications or awards, you can also add them to the website. This helps to show potential customers that you or your company is credible. Some common certifications and badges include ISO, SGS, CE mark certification.
If your website collects personal information from individuals who live in the European Union (EU), you will need to take note of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation from the European Union. It is a legal framework that sets guidelines for the collection and processing of personal information from individuals who live in the European Union (EU).
With consumers coming across multiple websites every single day, it is important for your website to be able to capture their attention and gain their trust.
The guidelines listed above should help you create a more trustworthy website that will drive visitors into your marketing funnel and convert casual visits into sales.
Marcus Wong is the Founder and Director of Growth for Neetclick, a Digital Growth Agency. They help SMEs grow their digital presence sustainably by focusing on building trust and authority.