The author, Trenton Moss, highlights several steps to gaining web credibility for your website:
1. You must prove there’s a real organization behind your website
The web has very low barriers to entry. Anyone can setup a website and start selling products literally overnight. If I’ve never heard of you before, why should I trust you? Prove to me you’ll support my purchase and be there tomorrow if I have questions.
2. Your website needs to provide ‘sensitive’ information
People have reservations about buying online. These “sensitive” people need reassurances that everything will turn out properly. Make sure you include warranties, return information, shipping policies, and company contact information in prominent locations.
3. All statements should be backed up by third-party evidence
Would your statements stand up in a court of law? Authenticate your marketing claims by including testimonials, quotes, references, client names, studies, and survey results.
4. There has to be proof that the organization is growing and has clients
A large and growing customer base will, by its very existence, quell the uneasy minds of potential customers. Call it safety in numbers or the safety in the herd mentality. Either way it definitely applies to your online venture.
5. Your website needs to have an air of professionalism and confidence
I focused on #5 in my previous article, which as you can see, is just a piece of the puzzle. Credibility is more than skin deep on websites. Don’t forget to add the evidence necessary to validate your claims and encourage prospects to do business with you.
Moss’ points are critical in gaining a potential customer’s trust when they first come to your site. You may be lucky and someone will take a one-time chance on you. However, if you hope to start any type of long term relationship with a customer you need to resolve their doubts and remove any barriers to entry.