Using credibility indicators on your website will make people trust your online store, your products and services. Social proofs, reviews and awards make people more willing to use your website because all these confirmations are socially approved by others. People trust people like them!
1. Testimonials
Testimonials are quite useful tools for any online business, no matter what your activity domain is. They have great impact on your visitors, especially if the testimonials have a relevant picture. Pictures of happy customers will make your audience feel comfortable.
A testimonial shows real people telling real stories about their own experience using your website and it’s designed to drive away online shopping concerns. Use regular clients and satisfied customers in your testimonials, so that new visitors will relate to them. It’s very important to use a familiar language with your visitors.
Video Testimonials are highly effective as visitors can watch satisfied clients speak about their experience they’ve had with your product or service.

Testimonials will bring even more conversions if they are from your client list. Use people with power making decisions, top influencers, because their words will assure your visitors that you are a reliable e-business. Having relevant industry influencers speaking about their experience and impressions on your products and services will impress prospective clients. Remember that powerful influencers bring along an audience.

Also, for a testimonial to have an impact, it’s important that the person writing it to resonate with your audience, otherwise it do little to improve conversions on your website.

Blue Fountain Media, a digital agency from New York, uses testimonials and pictures of clients. People with important positions from the companies you work with can influence people’s opinion. Furthermore, they use benefit oriented copywriting, that makes your clients feel special and, also, encourage you to try their services.

 

bluefountainmedia.com-exemplu

A great idea is to use personalised interactions to create segmented testimonials. For example, you can address to male users, that come from France and to female users, which come from Germany. Make as many segments as you need. Find out what segments are relevant to you and build segmented testimonials for a better approach.

Testimonials have greater impact if they show results and numbers. Showing your audience what others have accomplished using your products, will bring more conversions. Use real numbers, real facts and don’t round up your statistics, leave them exactly how they are. “65,48% increase in sales” works better than “65% increase in sales.” Why? Because it’s a more realistic number, and it shows your audience you got these results.

2. Awards

Awards give your business the industry recognition they need to confirm they deliver great service to their clients. In the advertising industry, it’s a common thing for agencies to display the awards they’ve got because companies trust more in the ability to create a remarkable campaign for their products or services.

Blue Fountain Media displays their awards:

bluefountainmedia.com-exemplu2

Also, Big Space, a digital creative agency from New York, uses awards on thier website:big_space_awards-exemple

The awards and industry recognition gives you authority. Having authority, you will become more and more credible and powerful, because authority is a great weapon of influence.

A simple thing you can do to increase your credibility is to use your portofolio of clients and display their name or logo on your website, just like Akqa does it:

akqa-_exemple

Another exemple is from Paramore Digital. Once again, smart copywriting can improve your credibility:

paramoredigital.com-exemplu

Don’t forget to use your clients and portfolio to show your audience what have accomplished so far. Have as many recognizable company logos as you can, because your visitors will think of you as a reliable player on the market, since you’ve got great results for similar companies as their’s.

Showing who your clients are, and portfolio will have a huge impact on people’s opinion. Now, let’s think of something. Imagine what you can accomplish if you give your audience even more than that. How about case studies? People are always looking for free resources to improve their knowledge and learn how to build and maintain a successful business. So give people what they want! Case studies will prove, step by step, how you managed to get more sales and reach your goals, helping your client to increase his business.

Furthermore, case studies have a great benefit for your audience. Case studies have detailed information and can show to prospective customers new methods on how to get the best of your product. Your visitors will find out new ways to improve their business, using different techniques and innovative approach.

3. Reviews

Reviews, whether it’s comments or star ratings, show people’s impressions and real opinions on a specific product from your website.

For example, IMDB lets you give star ratings, from a 1 to 10 scale, to every movie or tv series. Everyone who has an account on IMDB platform can rate a movie and, also, leave a comment:

the_shining

Let’s say you have no idea who Stanley Kubric is (even if there is a tiny tiny chance for this to happen). You go to IMDB and see “The shining” as a suggestion. You go on page movie’s page and when you see it has a 8.5 out of 10 rating, with 431,279 users that voted and reviews from 1,218 users, including metacritic, you can say it’s a pretty good movie.
If the short synopsis and the ratings are not enough for you, scroll down to see what others think of this movie. You can see if the review is reliable, according to the number of votes it has. In this particular case, 423 of 518 people found this review to be helpful. If it has relevance for you, just vote it or leave your own opinion about “The Shining.”

 

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Most of the online stores have a star rating option for their products. Recipe.com has a 5 star rating system, allows you to add your rating or comment.

recipe.com-exemple1

On Jamieoliver.com, you can ask questions and leave comment for every recipe. People share their experience, letting everybody to know how easy it is to cook Jamie’s recipes. Sometimes, people share their stories, giving an emotional feeling and, as we all know, emotions sell.

jamieoliver.com-exemple

Very important: read your reviews and comments and answer them!
Why having a review section, if you don’t check it? Reviews a great source of powerful insights, because you find out what bothers your customers and what’s not working well. Don’t erase bad reviews from your website: try to give a proper answer and solve the problem. Don’t ignore your customers, check out their problems and solve them. Transform each bad review into an opportunity to show you care about your customers and make them feel special. If you manage to please an unhappy customer and transform it into a happy, satisfied customer, he will most likely become a promoter for your business. Let say he will tell his friends the product delivery was late 3 days than promised, but you apologized and gave his free delivery and a 10% discount on his next order. How would this make you look? Like a serious online shop and cares for their customers, that made a mistake, but immediately admitted their fault and showed respect.

4. Secure shopping certificates

Sometimes, people are reticent to buy online because they are afraid to leave their credit card info on the website. You can drive away this fear using secure shopping certificates and brand certifications.

SSL Certificates (Secure Socket Layer) are small data files that digitally bind a cryptographic key to an organization’s details. SSL is used to secure credit card transactions, data transfer and logins, and more recently is becoming the norm when securing the browsing of social media sites. The secure shopping certificates are given by other websites whose main purpose is to check security payments for online store (e.g., trusted.ro).

asos_secure_shopping
Asos uses a Comodo logo to assure customers of secure online payment options. Also, they use brand certification from their partners to increase customers’s trust.
Using brand certification on your cart page, like Visa, Mastercard, Paypal etc will make your customers feel safe and place their order.
5. Shipping options

Everybody wants to know they will get their products safe and sound, within no more than 7 days. Make sure you have shipping options and taxes visible on your website. It’s very important to display the whole price from the beginning, with all taxes included. If you show different prices, the customer will feel betrayed and will probably leave without buying anything from your website.

Also, deliver your products as promised, in time and never be late. Give your customers a surprise and deliver faster. They will be delighted to receive their order before they expected: under promise, over deliver!

So, for better credibility rate, have your shipping options and taxes easily available on your product page and cart page.
Here is a great example from Zappos.com. They tell customers to shop with confidence because all information is encrypted with a SSL protocol. Also, they provide free shipping and free returns. So, with Zappos.com nothing can go wrong or, if for any reason, something happens, you have free returns.

exemplu_zappos

 

6. Return policy

Let your customers know it’s ok to return their products. Your customers will be impressed if you have a good returns policy. Charge no costs for the returns shipping and try to find out what was wrong with the product. It’s better if you have people phone you, so they can explain what the problem was. Knowing what went wrong, you can take care of it and improve that certain aspect.

exemplu_2-aliexpress
Aliexpress offers “Buyer Protection” visible on the product page. Using blue color and an increased font, it assures customers of full refund if they don’t receive their order in time.

7. Customer support

It’s crucial to give your potential customers every reason to trust you and to have a simple and visible customer support method will do that for you.
There are three main customer support methods: via email, via phone and via instant chat. Most of your customers want a quick answer to their questions, so it’s recommended to have the options to call and talk to a real person. For a faster response, use live chat. It’s most likely for people to use live chat, because it involves no further effort; it’s free and super easy to use.

So, start converting more and more, using all these credibility indicators!

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