As a small business, it’s important to establish trust with potential customers or you won’t close many sales. This is hard when you have a limited budget and don’t know where to start. However, don’t fret because we’ve compiled a list of six things to start implementing now to become a trusted small business in your industry.
Create a Professional Website
Image via Flickr by GotCredit
Your website is the face of your business. It is the first place people look when they want to find out information about the company. That means you need to have a professional looking website so that potential customers will trust you from the start. Make sure that your navigation is working properly and that there are no broken links anywhere. Your “About” page should have all the information potential customers would want, as well as easy-to-find contact information.
Show Your Experience Through Content
Advertisements have a purpose—they show potential customers the products and services you offer. However, ads don’t build trust effectively. One of the best ways to build trust is to show your expertise through articles on your website and around the Web. Update your website frequently with fresh content and seek opportunities to post your content on other websites. This will help you build trust and recognition in the online community. Remember, the Web is often the first place people turn for information about your products and services. If your site has a lot of content to greet them, you’re more likely to be seen as trustworthy.
Get Testimonials and Customer Reviews
People care more about customer reviews and testimonials than about your advertising messages. If people are posting good things about your business on the Internet, your image of trust will go up and you’re more likely to get referrals. Testimonials and reviews give potential customers reassurance. You can be proactive about getting these by simply picking up the phone and calling your previous customers to see how they are enjoying the items or services they have purchased from you. Then, encourage them to post their positive feedback on the Internet.
Build Brand Loyalty
When you’re trying to build trust, your website is very important, but so is your presence on social media. A lot of the time, you get new customers because they saw a post from a friend about your business. If you create brand loyalty with your existing customers through social media, you will be seen as trustworthy by potential customers. Testimonials and reviews are powerful, but nothing is more powerful than a personal referral to your business. Stay in touch with your previous customers to ensure they are happy and are loyal to your brand. Happy customers lead to referrals and trust.
Offer Secure Payment Methods
If you plan on allowing customers to make purchases from your website, you must choose the most secure and compliant online credit card processing solutions, such as Sage. Customers want to know their information is safe. Having a certified seal and the mark of a Google Trusted Business on your website can also help. When customers feel that their information could be compromised, they won’t make a purchase. You must show that you are trustworthy.
Customize Your Marketing Efforts
You establish trust through the content on your website and the interactions you have with people online and in your store. However, all of this starts with your advertisements because that is how you reach the masses. You should start to build trust with potential customers from your very first interaction. One effective way to create trust in your ads and other marketing efforts is to customize them specifically to your potential customers. It shows that you’re willing to go out of your way to make your customers happy.
Consider Forming A Business Trust
You may even want to consider forming a business trust. But first you should know what business trusts are. A business trust is an organization that is managed by trustees who are appointed by the original owner. These trustees also hold the title to the business, for the beneficiaries. Business trusts are legal entities for tax purposes. They must have a business purpose and must function as a business in order to be legal. You may or may not want to form a business trust. We will leave that decision to you, but you may want to consider financial advisors for your business to make sure you make the right decision.
Implementing these measures into your business plans should help you become a trusted business. The more trust you are able to build, the more likely you are to get sales and grow the way you want to. Advertisements and good sales are important, but trust should never be overlooked. Many customers use trustworthiness and customer service as the deciding factor for whether they buy something or not.