Your e-commerce site is the bee’s knees. But why should the rest of the world take your word for it? Sure, returning customers are likely to feel the same way, but first-timers have no transactional experience with your store. They’ll be searching your website for context clues; it’s up to you to send the right signals so they have the confidence and peace of mind to actually purchase wares from you. The key is trust transfer.
Want to know more about trust transfer and how it gives e-commerce sites more credibility? Read on to learn how you can establish virtual trust with your customer base.
Third-Party Trust Seals
While customers may believe you’re just tooting your own horn to make a sale, they’re much more likely to believe a third-party about the security or reputability of your store. Displaying trust seals is one way to show shoppers your operation is legitimate. Over 75 percent of online users feel trust logos affect their sense of security for a website, according to one survey. Similarly, over 75 percent of people have abandoned a site because they didn’t recognize the trust seals on display.
These trust seals often aim to beef up the perceived security of your website so customers feel their personal and payment information will be safe with you. One study from Baymard Institute asked approximately 2,500 online users which badges gave them the highest sense of trust when paying online. The top four were:
- Norton (35.6 percent)
- McAfee (22.9 percent)
- TRUSTe (13.2 percent)
- Better Business Bureau (13.2 percent)
It’s important to note a Norton Seal is a Secured Sockets Layer (SSL) badge, which indicates a stricter level of security compliance. The rest on the list are trust seals, which deals more with making customers feel secure rather than implementing a specific antivirus technology. It’s undeniable that the presence of these seals legitimises unfamiliar web stores and cloud-based e-commerce solutions. PCI-compliant platforms radiate an aura of trustworthiness as well.
Social Proof Persuasion
Another way to transfer trust to customers is to use the word of prior customers to bolster confidence. When shoppers see others have had successful transactions with your site, they’re more likely to join the ranks of the “have boughts.”
There are several ways to use social commerce to boost consumer confidence. Posting customer ratings and reviews near products can persuade shoppers to convert, based on others’ positive experiences. You can take a page out of one e-commerce giant’s book and create a “Customers who purchase X item also bought Y item” section. Bonus: this may result in cross-selling. You can also create content that speaks to shoppers, whether it takes the form of blog posts, a customer support forum or a funny social media post.
The more you can humanize your e-commerce store (and prove you’ve sold merchandise to crowds of pleased past customers), the more likely shoppers will be to trust you. Of course, your content creation and web design should uphold the highest standards of professionalism. But don’t be afraid to have a little fun from time to time. Whereas poor grammar and a lack of information will scare off customers, a well-written “About Us” page, HD photographs and high-quality content on your site will project an honest legitimacy.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to litter your online store with dozens of trust seals to prove your point. Often one or two of the top badges will do the trick. Meeting the requirements of a few reputable third-party organizations is enough. The same goes for customer reviews and other social proof, as it’s unlikely a shopper will read through 250 full-text reviews to make up their mind. You have a brief window to convince the customer, and trust transfer can help.
That’s the lowdown on trust transfer and how it gives e-commerce sites more credibility. Remember, trust is key when it comes to convincing customers to convert.