How to build brand trust & authority digitally?
Establishing authority in your industry via your website is important not just to give your visitors peace of mind that they can trust your information, services and/or products but also to help you rank better in search engines.
In 2015, Google issued its content guidelines for manual review. The following is a quote from Google:
“High quality pages and websites need enough expertise to be authoritative and trustworthy on their topic. Remember that there are “expert” websites of all types, even gossip websites, fashion websites, humor websites, forum and Q&A pages, etc. In fact, some types of information are found almost exclusively on forums and discussions, where a community of experts can provide valuable perspectives on specific topics.”
Making sure that you have no spelling or grammar errors is a good start, but really thinking about what makes you an expert and thinking about how you can communicate that to visitors and Google is the next step. If you have a relevant degree from a university make sure state that after your name when you are writing content. If you have a lot of followers on Facebook, include a link to your Facebook page, if you’ve published articles list them! Anything to make it clear you are an expert in your field.
Further down in Google’s guidelines they make it clear just how important authority is to your ranking. We see a lot of experts that deserve authority and truly are industry experts, they just haven’t done a good job of communicating it on their website. Take a minute to go review your own website. Is it clear within a few seconds that you are an industry expert? What you don’t want is for Google to conclude that:
“The author of the page or website does not have enough expertise for the topic of the page and/or the website is not trustworthy or authoritative for the topic.”
Steps to complete this task
Design a page where customers can leave their reviews/testimonials and make sure you add great testimonials on your homepage and checkout pages if appropriate. Social validation and good reviews always increase conversions!
Write social proof into your content (such as “Made in the USA,” “Same day shipping”, “10 years in Business”), most businesses do something unique that differentiates them. What types of things are you doing?
Visit top competitors websites. Are you lacking anything? Do they guarantee prices or have 24-hour support. Make your offer as good or better than your top competitors and make sure it is clearly communicated throughout your website.
If you are an expert or have experts in your company make sure you make that clear on your website. Even search engines look for authoritative signals around content. If you are a real estate expert writing content about the local market put all your credentials at the bottom of every piece of content and be sure to add links to all that person’s social media accounts (i.e. their LinkedIn account).
If your company does charitable work let people know.
Use trust authority logos, such as an SSL certificate and BBB accreditation on your website.
Test Live Chat and have a support forum where visitors can ask questions also make it easy for people to contact you and ask questions.