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In ecommerce, one of the things that matters most is your relationship with your customers.
One way to build this relationship is by establishing consumer trust. Trust plays a significant role in shaping a customer’s opinion of your business and impacts whether or not they engage with you. Surveys show that sixty-seven percent of consumers will stop buying a product from a company that they do not trust. This means that earning trust should be your top priority if you want to drive sales and achieve success for your online business.
Establishing trust in an online setting is different from establishing trust in a physical store, where customers experience your products and customer service face to face. In this article, we highlight the role of consumer trust and discuss how to get customers to trust your website—a process that requires sellers to earn the trust of shoppers and build confidence at every touchpoint of the online experience.
Trust plays an important role in ecommerce, influencing how a shopper interacts with your business. Trust helps to eliminate any uncertainty a customer may have about making a purchase from your site.
Shoppers consider various factors when evaluating the trustworthiness of a brand, including the brand’s customer service, its online shopping experience, and its credibility. Here’s how you can leverage your website and create an online experience that earns the trust of shoppers.
A shopper’s perception of your trustworthiness begins the moment they land on your website.
A website that is professional, clean and efficient creates a positive first impression. Modern consumers are selective about where they shop and expect a website to engage them. This is why it is crucial for sellers to follow user experience best practices like having a mobile-optimized site and well-designed customer account pages. Signals like trust seals and security certificates, combined with an attractive and easy-to-use site, help bolster your credibility and show that you are a safe business to shop with.
Because they are unable to see your products in person, online shoppers also expect to find thorough product information on your website. FAQs, product descriptions, videos, and content marketing are a few ways to provide clarity, establish your expertise, and answer questions customers may have. You’ll also want to make sure your inventory is visible and up to date—providing current information on the status of your products makes it clear what is and isn’t available for purchase and prevents inconsistency issues that can damage trust in your company.
Now that visitors feel more comfortable about interacting with your site, the next step is to remove any purchasing friction. This starts with your communication. Consumers are more likely to trust businesses that make it easy to contact people at the company. To increase availability, some companies are going the extra mile with 76% of support teams offering customer support outside of business hours, according to a survey by Hiver.
Another approach to earning trust is to offer a guarantee. A return policy, product guarantee, or a warranty shows that your business intends to deliver on the promises it makes. This alignment instills more confidence in your company and encourages shoppers to choose you over the competition.
The checkout experience is often the “moment of truth” for wary shoppers. Those that don’t thoroughly trust your business and site are likely to abandon their cart if your checkout doesn’t measure up to their standards. Build confidence in the purchase by making it clear to shoppers what they can expect. Be upfront about taxes, shipping costs, and delivery estimates at the beginning of the process to avoid frustrations later on. Offering multiple payment and shipping options is another opportunity to meet expectations and increase satisfaction in the purchase.
The more secure and convenient your checkout can be, the more likely customers are to trust your store and complete their purchase. You can provide flexibility and assurance during the checkout process by offering multiple payment options, using a secure payment processor, and displaying familiar payment badges.
Building trust doesn’t end after shoppers make a purchase. Unlike in-store shoppers, online shoppers have to pay in advance for physical goods that they can’t immediately use. Post-purchase communication is essential to establishing reliability and improving customers’ overall experience with your business.
An effective way to communicate with shoppers is through fulfillment visibility. Make sure your ecommerce platform can provide order confirmations, shipping notifications, and delivery updates to keep your customers in the loop.
This transparency does more than make customers happy—it removes the initial risk and uncertainty that they may feel when purchasing from a new site. Showing customers how their orders are being handled and how invested you are in their buying experience helps these customers feel more confident about purchasing again from you in the future. Providing visibility is key to earning positive reviews and referrals and positioning your business for growth.
While a transparent and seamless website plays a key role in building trust, showing who you are as a business is just as important. Customers are more likely to trust businesses that they have a close connection with. Adding a detailed “About Us” page to your website can provide a deeper look into your values and signal to customers that there are real, relatable people behind the business.
Shoppers also respond favorably to social proof. Press mentions display the reputation and real-world impact of your business, while customer testimonials and user-generated content show that real, authentic people use your products and that your business provides genuine value to others.
In the competitive world of ecommerce, gaining trust should be your top priority. Consumers aren’t just looking for a place to shop online. They are looking for a business that they can believe in and have a reason to come back to.
A foundation of trust provides a way for you to form meaningful connections with your customers. This not only leads to purchases on your site, but also fuels more powerful actions like brand referrals and product reviews. Whether you are starting an online business or running an established ecommerce brand, knowing how to get customers to trust your website and building that relationship with them are critical to the growth and long-term success of your business.
Miva offers a flexible and adaptable ecommerce platform that evolves with businesses and allows them to drive sales, maximize average order value, cut overhead costs, and increase revenue. Miva has been helping businesses realize their ecommerce potential for over 20 years and empowering retail, wholesale, and direct-to-consumer sellers across all industries to transform their business through ecommerce.