Is Your Website Trustworthy?

Does giving away something free still work to induce people to give you their contact details?

In this age of the "what's in it for me" society I advocate that it still can work.

Once you hhave initiated the give-to-get strategy, you still face a new challenge:

Who are you to deserve their ongoing attention — not to mention their money?

Web site owners are often slaves to their own need for credibility.

Ask yourself, is your web site trustworthy? 

Do you have years of experience in your industry? Do you have clients that will go out on a limb and vouch for your pathetically trite yet valid "total commitment to customer service"? Exclusively Web-based businesses, because they lack the brick-and-mortar reputation their competitors may enjoy, have an even tougher uphill battle to satisfy new users.

Here are three techniques to encourage visitors to stay on your site and enjoy a cup of virtual tea and perhaps even spend some money or share in some sage advice before leaving.

1. Make your site easy to use and intuitive in order to be perceived as credible and desirable,

Look up Bryan Eisenberg online and search for anything he writes. His books and articles have done loads for me personally over the years. You can even stop reading this article until you absorb his simple building blocks for Web site usability.

2. Be relevant, yet independent.

In this shift from just "giving" to "giving and satisfying", you can greet them with symbols of unbeatable convenience and reliability.

The first symbol can be a logo of an independent and reliable verification service such as Yelp. This puts the user one mouse click away from a variety of comments and ratings about your site. A second symbol might be a shopping verification logo of an organization such as the BBB (Better Business Bureau) OnLine. These two emblems reinforce the idea that your business may develop a relationship which is credible and capable of backing up its integrity.

3. Make visitors feel special.

People want relationships. Some want a really quick experience with no follow up — get in and get out. Others may want the cushy feeling.

Regardless of the nature of the relationship that will develop between Web site owner and Web site user, your customers want to know that you care and that you will make yourself available to provide help.

This is really the easiest technique and can be addressed by focusing on one mantra — "no time, no time, no time." No time is what everyone has tons of. Therefore, since people have no time, don't make them waste time hunting for answers.

– Make your frequently asked questions (FAQ) section obvious.
– Make your phone number bold and beautiful.
– Make whatever experience you provide online really fast and easy so that your users leave happy.

I call this the "FEH Principle," from an old Yiddish word that I'll more properly describe one day.

To recap, running a successful credibility strategy requires more than just ongoing communications. It requires that your Web site experience be enjoyable to each and every customer. To make sure that your customers keep sending you targeted traffic, just obey the FEH Principle. Because by doing so, the "who are you" question will answer itself: "I am Web site, hear me roar."