How to Increase Consumer Confidence and Sales

With the exception of well known sites like Ebay and mega retailer, ecommerce stores like Walmart, people are still (for good reason) skeptical of buying items online from lesser known merchants.  If your site gives off a less than professional appearance or has any particular issues, which may give your user a negative perception of the validity of your product or service offering, your chances of online conversion will dwindle.  There are a variety of steps you can take to combat this while building consumer confidence, which we’ll go over in further detail.

Display a phone number

Although emails and contact forms have become viable replacements for phone numbers in some instances, it’s still a good idea to have one available, especially when you’re attempting to make a sale.  Not only does it add some legitimacy to your business, but it’s reassuring for people to know they have an option to pick up the phone and talk to someone should they need support.  Additionally, if a user is interested in your offering, but weary of making a purchase online, you could still facilitate a purchase over the phone.

Only ask shoppers for relevant information

The more information you ask for, the less likely someone will fill out your form and make a purchase.  If you’re selling a water bottle, there is no reason a user should have to tell you their age, or what industry they work in.  If the information you request doesn’t pertain specifically to the product being sold, or contribute to the delivery process, get rid of it.

Don’t sell too aggressively

Just like in the real world, a pushy salesman is more likely to drive people away than encourage someone to buy.  The same is true for selling online.  Being too aggressive with your sales pitch is likely to drive away readers.  Another key aspect to avoid alienating potential customers is to avoid using hype and other exaggerated claims about your product or service (unless true).  For example, if you don’t have the data to back up the claim:  ‘Best Binoculars in the World!’, it will probably be met with skepticism at best.  At worst, you risk your credibility and a sale.

Testimonials

Yes, it’s one of the oldest tricks in the book, but testimonials are still one of the best credibility elements you can add to any website or landing page.  Not only do they instill confidence in potential customers visiting your site, but they also work to enhance your brand and product offering.  Allowing site visitors to share your product with their friends and connect with the brand via Facebook and Twitter are great marketing tools and excellent for increasing brand recognition and conversion rates.  Testimonials and other real customer reviews are especially valuable when placed next to your conversion points and other calls to action.  The popularity of sites like Yelp demonstrate just how much people love to hear about products and services from previous users before they buy.

Brand Consistency

Your main website, subsequent landing pages, and online or banner advertisements should all have a similar look and feel, reassuring people that they’re still in the right place.  If you have a green and yellow banner ad offering a sale on gloves, users should be directed to a green and yellow landing page offering gloves after they’ve clicked on it.  If the color palette and messaging are the same at all touch points, people will have more confidence in your offering.  On the other hand, if there is inconsistency between the two, you will lose business.

Certification & Security Logos

Perhaps the most important steps you can take to build consumer confidence in your offering and encourage online orders is to make sure site visitors feel safe filling out your form and using your website to send valuable personal information such as credit card numbers.  Before setting up an ecommerce site, you should already have the necessary security certificates in place to keep sensitive information private and alleviate any fears that it could wind up in the wrong hands.  Once you have the necessary certificates, it’s imperative to display them in a prominent place within the conversion form and shopping cart to reassure customers throughout each stage of the buying process that there are no risks involved with purchasing your product.

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