Trust is important in all relationships. You need to be honest, open, and communicative with anyone if you hope to ever have a lasting relationship. We aren’t talking about your significant other here, though. We’re talking about your customers. Not meeting someone face-to-face or being able to see their operation requires a leap of faith of sorts when it comes to e-commerce. The best way to assuage that fear is by building trust on the web. In fact, trust is one of the most important off-page SEO factors, and your business would benefit greatly by increasing it. Let’s cover what it is and how you can increase it.
What is trust?
The periodic table of SEO elements, a go-to model in the business, describes trust in terms of authority, engagement, history, and identity. More simply, it is how willing your customers are to believe that you are a legit business. Handing out an email address, contact information, and especially payment information means that the customer must have some level of trust that you will provide the services paid for. Building it isn’t easy, but it is possible.
What are the elements of trust?
There are many factors that go into building trustworthiness on the web, and everything from the look of your website to your contact information is going to make a difference. Let’s take a look at a few of the major factors as described before:
- Authority – Your website’s authority is based on the perceived credibility of the links on your page, the number of shares around the web, and many other on-page factors that would make you the go-to provider of information or services in your niche.
- Engagement – Engagement is measured by how much time users spend on your webpage. If the information is relevant, there is a greater chance they will stay for longer. Irrelevant or poorly constructed information will lead to visitors bouncing away.
- History – How long your site or domain has been around is actually a factor in gauging your trust. Just like “founded in 1953” on the storefront influences customers, the date of your founding will influence Google as well.
- Identity – Does your website make an effort to identify itself and the authors of the content? Again, only by being open and honest with everyone can you build successful relationships.
How can I increase the trust of my web page?
Many of the factors that go into building trust are not easily manipulated, and for good reason. Trust should be a measure of how others perceive you, and it should be very difficult to build this. However, there are techniques to increase the trust level for your website itself. We recommend:
- Adding badges and guarantees – You know the feeling of trust that you get when a company offers a 30 day money back guarantee? Badges on your website that stick out will help assuage any fears a customer has. One A/B test for an e-commerce site saw a 32% increase in conversion rates after using trust badges.
- Include client logos – If you have big-name client, then include their logos on your list of testimonials or clients served. This 3rd-party validation is usually enough to convince customers.
- Show your face – In keeping with identity as described above, showing your face and providing information about you will go a long way to making customers feel like they are connected with you. Just because you can’t shake hands doesn’t mean that you can’t smile when you first meet and make a good impression.
The off-page SEO factors that influence your site’s ranking are as elusive as they are effective. Being able to understand each of them and how to influence each one will help you dominate organic search results. Trust is perhaps the most important factor, and by dividing it up into several smaller subsections, we can get a better grasp on each. Use these tips to build more trust on your website, and build strong connections with your customers.