Written by: Gregor Saita

How to Build a Trustworthy Website for Your Business

Is your business website the online equivalent of a shady back-alley business? Learn what you need to avoid, and what you must do to build a trustworthy business website to attract, engage, and convert your target audience.

How to Build a Trustworthy Website for Your Business

 

Do You Come Across as a Shady Business Online?

Would you do business with a shady joint down some dark back alley? Of course not! You want to be where it is friendly and safe, on Main Street in a brightly light store. The same applies to the digital world. Most likely, your business website is the first place people see. So is yours a trustworthy website, or are you a shady business?

Your business website is your digital storefront. You are directing all your content marketing, search engine optimization, and social media efforts towards it. But in reality, your website could be harming your credibility, rather than helping.

It’s crucial that you build trust with your current and potential consumers, both in-person and online. Take a look at this checklist to see if you have a trustworthy website, or if your website is ruining down your hard-earned credibility.

 

Trustworthy Website Checklist

 

PixoLabo - Building a Trustworthy Website - Design

 

Design

Do…

 

  • Make professional appearance a priority.
  • Have a clear visual style that is appropriate for your target audience.
  • Design with consistency and keep your clients’ needs in mind.
  • Make sure navigation is visible.
  • Confirm that clickable elements are defined and the same color throughout the design.
  • Maintain your website with the latest software updates to improve security.
  • Use a trusted hosting company.
  • Install a Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate.
  • Have a privacy policy.

 

Don’t…

 

  • Use low-resolution, blurry, distorted, or watermarked photos.
  • Have missing images.
  • Have broken links.
  • Have confusing or hidden navigation menus.
  • Have inconsistent navigation.
  • Use Flash for animation; it’s dated technology and won’t display on mobile devices.
  • Have a slow loading website, people are impatient and won’t stick around.
  • Use unprofessional fonts like Comic Sans.
  • Don’t use small font sizes. We recommend 16px.
  • Avoid garish colors like neon and clashing hues that are hard on the eyes.
  • Allow shoddy design that is busy, cluttered, and disorganized.
  • Keep placeholder content or images.

 

 

PixoLabo - Building a Trustworthy Website - Content

 

Content

Do…

 

  • Think about why your clients are coming to your site and make that content most important.
  • Clearly articulate what you do and how you add value.
  • Write in a consistent tone and style throughout the website.
  • Have testimonials or references.
  • List your key clients.
  • Have an FAQ page.
  • Publish case studies and white papers.
  • Establish a blog and post regularly.
  • Update your news page with timely information.
  • Include accurate information about the industries you serve.

 

Don’t…

 

  • Have any typos or grammatical errors. Use a proofreader instead.
  • Try to be too funny, “hip,” or casual. It can sound silly and fall flat.
  • Don’t use industry jargon or buzzwords. It will only confuse visitors.
  • Have inaccurate or outdated information on your website.

 

 

PixoLabo - Building a Trustworthy Website - E-Commerce

 

E-Commerce

Do…

 

  • Clearly state your return and exchange policy.
  • Make it easy to login for return visitors. We recommend social login functionality.
  • Show as many high-quality product images as possible.
  • Provide accurate and detailed product descriptions.
  • Allow shoppers to review and comment on your products.
  • Offer discounts and incentives.
  • Establish a frequent shopper rewards program.
  • List product size, weight, and any other related information.
  • Clearly show if a product is in stock or on backorder.
  • Show other, related, or bundled products.
  • Provide multiple, trusted payment options.
  • Offer multiple shipping options.
  • Email detailed order confirmation.

 

Don’t…

 

  • Have a cluttered shop or products page.
  • Make it hard to find products.
  • Require membership or login to make a purchase.
  • Use a hard sell.
  • Use switch-and-bait tactics.
  • Direct shoppers away from your site to complete their transaction.
  • Use an unknown payment processor.
  • Have a long or complicated checkout process.
  • Have hidden fees.

 

 

PixoLabo - Building a Trustworthy Website - Transparency

 

Transparency

Do…

 

  • Provide contact information very clearly.
  • Have multiple ways that people can contact you (Phone, Email, Contact Form).
  • Have your company address visible and easy to find.
  • Provide directions and other relevant information on your directions page, for example, including where to park, public transit information can be beneficial.
  • Have a map of your location, preferably a Google Map.
  • Show your opening hours. Be sure to update as needed for holidays and special events.

 

Don’t…

 

  • Have splash or intro pages.
  • Have pop-ups that ask for too much information from your visitors too soon.
  • Make people opt into cookies before they can even see your site.
  • Require visitors to install a plugin to see the animation or other parts of the site.

 

 

PixoLabo - Building a Trustworthy Website - Internet

 

Internet

Do…

 

  • Link to your social media profiles. LinkedIn is a favorite among professionals.
  • Link your content to other credible websites and resources.
  • Guest blog.
  • Comment on other blogs, groups, or online discussion sites for your industry.
  • Have a presence on third-party review sites for your industry. Reviews are much more credible than anything you say.
  • Display logos of your trade organizations or professional groups.
  • Display any certifications, licenses, or other credentials.
  • Include testimonials and case studies that illustrate the benefit you had on your clients.

 

 

PixoLabo - Earning Your Visitors' Trust (and Business)

 

Earning Your Visitors Trust (and Business!)

Now you know what it takes to create a trustworthy website for your business. Without one, you will run the risk of leaving doubts in the minds of your website visitors. And if that doubt grows into mistrust, you will have lost them.

Adding transparency to your online presence by having a trustworthy website is not that hard. Think about it; what makes you feel comfortable when you surf the web? Most likely, your potential clients or customers feel the same way. Give them what they want.

Look at it like this; when you meet a client in person, you are friendly, outgoing, and informative. A smile, wave, or firm handshake makes an impression and sets the tone for your client relationship. A trustworthy website works the same way.

If your business website comes across as engaging, relevant, and informative, you are half-way there. Make it easy to contact you and ask questions or go and make a purchase. Add videos and images of your business, store, or restaurant, and you and your team providing your service or product to happy consumers. Show that five-star review from Yelp or Angie’s List. After that, all you have to do is to deal with the increase in business!

 

PixoLabo - We Can Help You with Professional Web Design

 

Need a Trustworthy Website?

Here at PixoLabo, we offer a full range of website consulting and design services for businesses and product brands, including custom web design and development, e-commerce solutions, search engine optimization, brand design, and WordPress optimization.

Feel free to reach out to us and learn more about our business website design services. Our team can help you determine if you have a trustworthy website, or what you need to do to get one. All you have to do is click the button below. The highly caffeinated team is here to help!

 

Do You Have a Trustworthy Website?

Do visitors trust your online presence? Or are certain elements making potential consumers feel uneasy? Do you have anything to add to our trustworthy website checklist? Maybe you have some examples of your own you can share? Or perhaps you built your own trustworthy website?

Please leave your comments below so our audience can benefit as well, and grab our feed, so you don’t miss our next post! And help other business owners get a trustworthy website by sharing this post with them!

 

Thank you! We appreciate your help to end bad business websites, one pixel at a time!

 

By Gregor Saita
Co-Founder / CXO
@gregoraschmidt

Photo of author

Gregor Saita

Gregor is Co-Founder and CXO of PixoLabo, a multinational web design agency. With over 25 years of experience in web, UX, and information design, Gregor consults for startups in Asia and the US. He is also an adjunct professor of design and user experience, and a creative technologist and consultant at EnLinx Partners, LLC. Gregor lives with his wife, an award-winning Japanese designer and photographer, in Sendai, Japan. When he is not working, he enjoys writing, exploring, gardening, and sampling new street food.

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