7 ways to Increase Sales by creating Trust

The key to conversing a visitor into a client is the creation of trust. Your product can be the greatest thing on earth or the dullest office supply ever, both can be sold online when your visitor knows you are the best supplier for that product or service.

We often advise on how to gain trust in our website reviews, and I’ve compiled a list of some of the advice we’ve given over time. Of course, trust can be earned in more ways than this, but we’ll give you these seven to start with.

1. Use clear and normal language

This is an often overseen issue that causes a lot of misgrief with your visitors. You should speak their language, not drown them in a sea of technical specs you don’t even understand yourself. Use a clear and direct style of writing. Keep your audience in mind. Do not focus on telling them what you want to tell them, focus on providing as many arguments as possible why their quality of life improves after buying that specific product.

2. Testimonials

Do not brag about your products yourself. If your products or services are really that good, I’m sure you’ll find someone else that can do the bragging for you. Make sure your visitor understand that the testimonial is written by an actual customer, by listing at least name and company and if the customer agrees, even a picture of him. Video seems to be the next big thing in testimonials, by the way. In my opinion, that video testimonial should be accompanied by a written excerpt:

Testimonials as seen on cloversites.com

Testimonials as seen on cloversites.com

3. Verified signs

Everyone can create a verified sign, so don’t let those verified signs fool you. But the majority of your visitors actually believe that you are the ‘Most appreciated hairdresser of Mississippi’ or the ‘Best Plummer 2006′. Man, I hate those signs. But when the signs are from well-known companies, they really do add value to a webshop:

"Verified" signs

"Verified" signs

By investing in the guidelines of the right verification companies  the webshop shows that it has been keeping the customer in mind when setting up the website.

4. Pictures

If you recognize the woman on this picture, please call the following toll-free number…:

Stock photography

You can do better than that stock photo. Listing actual pictures of yourself and/or your employees pushes conversion due to recognition and identification.

5. List your physical address

This one is really simple: people want to know there is a place to go to in case of problems (if any). Having an actual store next to your webshop works even better, especially if a lot of your customers are relatively local.

In the Netherlands digitalstreet.nl made this concept into a huge success, even though they’re located in the south-west of the Netherlands (quite near to where we are), people come from all over the Netherlands because they’d rather buy the product in the store. There are more stories like that, but even if you don’t want to do that, just listing your address on check-out pages increases trust a lot.

6. What happens after check-out?

There’s this hesitation in almost all buying decisions: right before you click the Pay Now button. What’s going to happen next? Am I charged for taxes, import, anything else? Can I select a wrapping paper? Explain what happens after clicking that button. That way the customer is included in your ordering process and there are absolutely no suprises. That can be done with just a few short lines of text:

checkout message on bloomingdales.com

7. Show you care about more than making money

The most important thing is that your website has to reflect your believe in the product or service you provide. Just a list of products is not enough. Also tell your customer about your company, your main values or mission statement. I really love the 1% for the Planet from Yvon Chouinard (Patagonia) and Craig Mathews (Blue Ribbon Flies) http://www.onepercentfortheplanet.org. Next to showing that you are involved, it also creates a huge sympathy and trust factor.

We’d love to hear your tips!

If you are selling products or services on your website, you must have thought about this subject. I’m curious: What have you done on your website to increase trust? What are you going to do?

7 ways to Increase Sales by creating Trust is a post by on Yoast – Tweaking Websites.A good WordPress blog needs good hosting, you don’t want your blog to be slow, or, even worse, down, do you? Check out my thoughts on WordPress hosting!

Over-Optimization vs Optimization

So Matt said something at SXSW last week about Google introducing a filter / penalty / change. As my inbox is already overflowing with emails from people asking whether they should stop optimizing their site and/or using my plugin, I thought I’d do a quick post. What Matt said was vague at best but he said one thing that leaves little room for speculation:

All those people doing, for lack of a better word, over optimization or overly SEO – versus those making great content and great site.

So, Google wants to do something about over-optimization. That’s not saying they want to do something about SEO. As Matt said on that same panel one more time, they have nothing against SEO, they have something against spamming.

So, if you write texts with a keyword density of 25%, you maybe should be worried. If you install an SEO plugin that helps you write more search engine friendly content (and even warns you when it thinks the keyword density is too high) and optimizes most of the technicalities for you, there’s nothing to worry about. Several Googlers use my plugin, do you really think they’d do that if they considered it over-optimization?

Now, stop over-analyzing everything Matt says and get back to work, building good websites for users.

Over-Optimization vs Optimization is a post by on Yoast – Tweaking Websites.A good WordPress blog needs good hosting, you don’t want your blog to be slow, or, even worse, down, do you? Check out my thoughts on WordPress hosting!

SEO Campixx 2012

SEO Campixx 2012I spoke at SEO Campixx 2012 in Berlin last weekend. It was an awesome conference and I met up with loads of good friends. During that time I was interviewed and my presentation was recorded, so I’ll let you view both below:

My presentation on how to use my WordPress SEO plugin (warning, I was a bit groggy and it shows), was recorded by Webschorle.

My interview with Tobias Fox:

SEO Campixx 2012 is a post by on Yoast – Tweaking Websites.A good WordPress blog needs good hosting, you don’t want your blog to be slow, or, even worse, down, do you? Check out my thoughts on WordPress hosting!