Developing customers’ trust in your company is done the same way as if you were building trust between two individual people, and funnily enough, all those rules Mom tried to drill into us as kids apply between company and customer, too. Check out these simple techniques that nurture reliability and trust in your business, delivering customer loyalty for life. Then call your mother, and tell her she got it right after all.
1. Be Honest
Mother always told you “honesty is the best policy”, and that couldn’t be more true than in business dealings. If you want your customers to trust you, be honest with them about your product and services. Don’t be vague; don’t exaggerate; and don’t misrepresent yourself. Don’t ooze that your service is THE answer to their troubles. Instead, tell people what your product is about, give them all the information they need, and let them decide.
Client case studies and reviews can also be good tools to leverage, here. They help prove to the world that you’re being straightforward about your product.
2. Keep Your Word
In the words of Flip Wilson, “Don’t let your mouth write checks your body can’t cash.” Simply put, don’t make promises you can’t keep – not in friendships, relationships, and, that’s right – not business, either. Keep advertising straightforward, and don’t try to oversell with grandiose wording or claims that your service can’t live up to. For example:
- If you say you have a no hassle, money-back guarantee, make sure you mean it.
- If you advertise that your plan has the fastest internet speed, deliver on that promise.
The fastest way to lose customers’ trust is to make a promise that your product cannot or does not fulfill.
3. Let Someone Else Talk
Let social proof tell new customers what you’re about. Use customer testimonials, reviews, social media mentions, and other outside sources as much as possible. Why? Because if you say you’re great, it’s marketing; if someone else says it, it’s reliable.
There are loads of tools you can use for this one. Spectoos is a great option that integrates customer testimonials onto your site in a beautifully designed widget, which you can see on Kristi Hines’ website (@kikolani) for example:
Also, remember to keep lines of communication open, so people can speak their minds to and about you on social media channels, like Facebook and Twitter.
Worried about negative comments? It’s better to respond to negativity and smooth things out in the open than to avoid all communication. Also, this scenario can help increase the trust that customers have towards your company, as it shows that you care about what your customers say, and you do your best to quickly resolve issues. No company is 100% perfect, but showing that you make an effort to improve your service and handle your customers’ requests will certainly give you trust points.
4. Be a business to rely on
Being easily reachable, approachable and contactable is key to building trust with customers. Offer 24/7 customer support with convenient lines of communication like live chat, phone, and email. Respond to issues or comments immediately (or at least let people know the time frame in which to expect an answer), and send a follow-up email or call after a problem or complaint has been resolved.
In addition to being a great live chat provider, Zopim (@Zopim) also show us an excellent example of how they build trust with their clients by being easily reachable, with the live chat box clearly visible on the screen.
5. Put Your Best Foot Forward
In many case, making a good first impression on customers can determine whether or not you make the sale. Make sure your site is “dressed for success” with an attractive, modern and clean design, along with a few important trust-earning elements, such as:
- Clearly-stated policies like Terms and Conditions, money-back guarantees, etc.
- Easy-to-find contact information. This shows clients that you want them to be in touch and that you’re really who you say you are.
- Proper functionality. Scan your website for dead links, poor grammar, improper spelling, and other eyesores.
- SSL, badges, and trust signals clearly displayed make wary customers feel more relaxed.
82% of consumers said they’d use a brand again IF they trusted it. Build your customer relationships based on trust, and make your business practices the kind even your mother would be proud of.
Do you employ any other methods for building customer trust in your company? Let us know in the comments, below!