How to Boost Peoples’ Trust On Your Website

You’ve done it all. You’ve put together a great website. You’ve launched a sales funnel. You’re adamant about capturing the essential leads that can boost your business. But somehow—for some reason—you’re just not seeing the results. Bounce rates are still high, despite the fact that you’ve got great content to check out. Conversion rates are still low, even though you’ve optimized precisely to improve them. What’s going on here? It might come down to how much people trust you. “Trust” is one of the invisible—and important—factors that can make or break a web presence. With it, you’ll have plenty of conversions and lots of new potential leads. Without it, well…you’re left wondering what’s missing. Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to boost your site’s trust levels before you go fixing something else that isn’t broken. Trust: A Basic Primer Before we get to specific tactics, let’s talk about this thing we call trust. This isn’t a trick word. It’s nothing unfamiliar to you. When it comes to websites, trust is the same thing you’ve always known it to mean. But what you have to understand is that any website is inherently asking a bunch of strangers to trust a stranger. It can be intimidating. Especially in the mortgage, real estate, and insurance industries—where trust is paramount. If you’re going to boost trust, you need to stop being a stranger. You need to make yourself more available and show them exactly why you have the reputation you have. That means making your website more than just a business card. But how do you do that? Where do you install trust where it previously hadn’t appeared? Basic Trust Building Secrets You Need to Know In my book, The Mortgage Marketing Manifesto, I share a significant statistic: 90% of customers read online reviews before visiting a business. Even more interesting, some 88% of them trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. This says a lot about the way the internet is structured. In other words, an individual isn’t always going to simply “take your word for it” when you tell them you can help them with their needs. There is a lot you can do on the site itself to boost trust—and we’ll get to that—but until you realize the social nature of trust, you won’t have a full grasp on why you’re not getting the results you want. First, look to third party review sites for a way to boost your online reputation, including:
  • Google+
  • Yelp
  • Facebook
  • TrustPilot
  • Zillow
This is just a small selection of the options out there, but it will serve as an introduction to how customers are actively thinking about your business. To many, Zillow seems like a natural place to put all of their egg when it comes to reviews… but I want you to realize that Zillow isn’t always working with you, either. For example, if someone finds you through Zillow, and they could have been a lead that you converted yourself, it’s a bit like paying double for your marketing. It’s certainly more work than is necessary. And though it’s tempting to use a cavalcade of badges and trust signals provided from companies like Zillow, keep in mind that these badges often come with links back to those sites to begin with. So rather than demonstrating trust for you, these badges form a sort of conversion funnel…for someone else. It’s important to demonstrate trust, but it’s even more important to keep someone on your site in the first place. Building Trust By Getting Personal Now let’s focus on some on-site changes you can make to your web presence to affect how trustworthy your business is perceived. The traditional tactic of most mortgage, real estate, and insurance marketers is simple: to convey a sense of professionalism. And that’s fine. It’s intuitive. You’re a professional, after all, and no one’s going to trust you if you come across as anything less than a professional. But in pursuing a professional tone, you often surrender a different aspect of your website that can result in more leads: coming across as both casual and personal. Let’s face it: no matter how professional you come across, there will always be a social aspect to why people make their decisions. If you don’t demonstrate that there’s somebody on the other side of that website—someone worth talking to you—then you potentially get in the way of your potential customers coming to trust you. Want an example? Take the traditional “business card” site. A simple, professional website can be a good thing. It shows that you’re a professional who takes your job seriously. But when all you do is tell people about your services and about your experience as a professional, you don’t do anything to create a personal connection with your potential clients. An even more effective web presence will include a little bit more to make your services appear more personal:
  • The “About Us” Page: When someone clicks “about us,” they want both a professional and personal overview of what it is that you do. What will their experience with you be like? You have to demonstrate that you’re both an experienced professional who takes the personal time to make a client’s priorities your
  • Testimonials: Client testimonials can create an instant connection with your potential leads. Not only does it help serve the need that people have to know what others are saying about your services, but testimonials go beyond just that. A good testimonial puts other people in the shoes of someone who needed your help—and was able to find it. This boosts trust and makes your service seem more “real” even before the potential client contacts you.
Although trust badges and a list of professional experience points will be nice to have, try to remember that trust is an inherently emotional proposition. You need to demonstrate that your services won’t just work for them on a professional level, but will also meet the emotional predicament that their situation has put them in. Referrals: A Way to Instantly Build Trust Perhaps none of these tips will be as powerful as this one word: Referral. Building up an extensive professional network is important because referrals can be some of the most high-quality, qualified leads there are. A referral is someone who’s already looking for services like yours. And when they come to you via a recommendation or referral, then many of these trust issues are wiped away. The potential leads already knows you’re trustworthy because of the kind of company you keep. That’s a powerful way to do business—and it’s a powerful way to attract the best kinds of leads there are. But it doesn’t just happen overnight. You have to build a network and establish a web presence that builds your credibility within your industry. Featuring showcase of preferred referral partners that you work with and recommend on your website can help you not only create a more valuable web presence for clients, but also get you linked up as a preferred partner on their websites as well… which will create more trust, and help establish you as a local expert, while increasing your name recognition and website traffic. You also need a sales funnel in place—one that will draw qualified leads from your web traffic and turn them into potential conversions. You can start with a free trial of leadPops to jumpstart the results you get from your marketing. But don’t forget to always think about that vital element of trust. With it, you’ll make plenty of referrals. Without it, you’ll always wonder why traffic isn’t converting into qualified, exclusive leads.
Andrew Pawlak

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