So, do you have the best offers? Then the next thing is that your visitors have to actually believe that you have the best offers – or to put it in a broader context – they have to trust you. This article will show you how to design a trustworthy online shop – just in time for Black Friday.
Why you need the trust of your customers
Have you ever gone to a website, only to leave again because it didn’t look legitimate and professional? That’s exactly what you DON’T want to happen when users visit your webshop. You want to appear as a serious and reliable vendor that has great products at the best prices, and will deliver on time – because that’s what you are, right?
But how do you ensure that people see you that way?
Well, the first step is reading this article 😉
What are the main credibility factors for websites?
So, now you’re curious what to do exactly? You’re curious how your website or webshop should be designed so it imparts trust, right? Ever heard about the four main credibility factors for websites? I have! But no worries, they’re not something that just popped out of my head – I got them from someone who definitely knows: according to Nielsen Norman Group there are four main factors about design that impart trust. I’ll give you a short introduction here.
Professionals are distinguished by being well-organised, at least that’s what most customers think. So if you want your webshop to look professional, make sure it’s logical, relevant, and valid. This includes a suitable colour scheme and a well-thought-out use of images.
I guess you would agree that categorisation is especially important for an online shop. Make sure your menu items are named appropriately, so your visitors understand exactly what you mean. Try to see your webshop as a grocery store – when you walk in you expect it to be well-ordered, clear, and equipped with understandable signs that don’t leave room for interpretation.
When looking at online shops, I sometimes imagine how the naming of categories actually happened. Somebody thought of a clever and creative way to group items and found an even more creative term for naming it. That might seem like a funny and inventive idea – but no one outside your company will get it – sorry, but that’s just the truth! When people feel that you don’t have what they’re looking for, they will leave your site. End of story. 🙁
Besides categorisation, visual design is also an important factor and can carry a lot of trust (or mistrust). The selection of images and colours, and how they’re arranged in combination with text, can both support or contradict the way you want to be seen by your customers.
Last but not least, your shop should shine bright (like the diamond that it is) thanks to the absence of bugs, broken links, or spelling mistakes. What might just be a small mistake from your side can quickly become a game-changer if customers interpret a spelling mistake as a sign of you not caring about details. Surely you want to be perceived as being detail-oriented when asking people to spend their hard-earned money on your products and not your competitors’.
Be open about the things you offer and about the things you don’t. The more potential questions are answered at first glance, the more your users will trust you. So, don’t hide prices, shipping and billing information, or available payment methods. Nothing is more annoying as a user than having filled out all your personal information for that thing you really want to buy, only to reach the last step of the checkout and realise that the shop doesn’t ship to your country or doesn’t offer a suitable payment method for you. You can be sure that you’ll never see this user again, ever. By the way, as we’re already talking about checkout – have a look at our article: Check your Check-Out in Time for Black Friday)
By showing relevant information you can prevent users from getting annoyed but you can also make them trust you. The absence of such information will mainly have the effect of users thinking, “Why isn’t this site showing information about shipping and payment? Something seems fishy here, I’ll find somewhere else to shop.” – that’s surely something you don’t want.
Comprehensive, Correct, and Current
Make sure your website shows people what you’re all about. Not only should the content of your website be correct (this shouldn’t even be a question) but you should also show the full range of what you offer. It should be crystal clear, from the very beginning, what products you offer and for whom. If you leave something out or don’t display things properly, regardless if this is a product category or a target group you forgot to address, people will think you don’t offer it.
Besides being correct and complete, the information on your website should also be current. Let’s imagine you sell clothes and say that forest green is the colour of the season for 2018. That information won’t be relevant when it’s already 2019 (unless you’re a time-traveller).
Connected to the Rest of the Web
I know it and you know it – no one will look for products on your page only unless you’re Amazon – but even then, most people will at least compare prices from a few different sites.
So I assume you’re not Amazon, therefore people will need foundations to build their trust on. And besides your website, they’ll look for proof for their trust from other sources. That’s why it’s important that your shop can be found on third party sites such as social media or review sites. So firstly, make sure that you can be found on those sites and secondly, make it visible on your website as well. It’s great if you can tell people how great you are and why they should trust you, but having other people say that ABOUT you is worth even more.
How to check your credibility factors
Now that you know what you have to do to make your website trustworthy before Black Friday – how do you know where to start? What do your customers think when they visit your webshop? Do they like it? Can they find everything they’re looking for and – most importantly – do they trust you?
There are so many questions but how can you find the answers?
Perhaps you already have an idea – the answer is Crowdtesting – surprising, isn’t it? 😉
Do you want to know if your website and menu are well-structured and the categorisation makes sense not only from your own point of view? Well, I guess card sorting might be a service for you 😉 Simply let your target users tell you how they would structure your website navigation.
You can also run a Usability & UX Study and ask your customers about their perception of your webshop, as well as understand how they search for items and use your webshop in general.
To make sure your website is bug-free and runs seamlessly, I would recommend a bug test – either exploratory or structured.
As you can see, crowdtesting offers many ways for you to make sure customers can trust you and your brand. Are you curious to hear more now? Our crowdtesting experts are happy to help!