One thing that customers look for above all else is authenticity. People are used to being given false promises or being tricked by the fine print. It has led to many customers becoming skeptical when interacting with a new business. The best thing you can do to build trust with these types of customers is to be authentic. Be very honest about your business and what your goals are. One way you can do this is by being more personal. Don’t present your brand as generic or unemotional. Often, if you tell your story and why your business is important to you it allows customers to connect with you more. They will see your authenticity and be more receptive to your business.
BECOME A PROBLEM SLOVER
A solid way to build trust with your customers, and to create a reputation for being a helpful brand, is to actually solve customers’ problems. One reason customers can become frustrated with a brand is if the business doesn’t listen to, acknowledge, or address their concerns. Make sure your staff, and especially your customer service reps, know how to help solve problems for your customers. The first thing you need to do is actually listen to the problem. Allow them to fully explain what the issue is and ask questions if you are confused. Next, you need to express that you understand and “feel” their pain. Restating the problem can help to show that you were listening. Finally, you need to present and discuss options and then take action. Following up later on can also help this process.
The thing that customers dislike the most is feeling tricked or lied to. Part of building trust is being open and honest. Be transparent with your customers in every way you can. Make sure your policies are very clear and apparent. Customers should have to search through several pages on your website to learn about a return policy. You can also just be open with customers about your business and keep them updated. Most of all, you should be clear about what your core values are and emphasize these about selling your products or services. Show your customers that prioritizing your values is what is most important to your business.
PREVENT DATA BREACHES
Your customers will trust you with their data whenever they make purchases or if they work with you online. Nothing destroys brand/customer trust like a breach of data. If your customers find out that your business didn’t keep their data safe, they will likely discontinue business with you. To prevent this, you need to emphasize your cybersecurity and protect their data. Improving IT security protects your business from cybersecurity threats. Spare no expense as you update your information technology and the team handling your cybersecurity.
UTILIZE CUSTOMER REVIEWS
Before someone engages with a business, it’s likely that they will do a little research first and look at reviews. A majority of consumers claim that they trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. These reviews show people’s honest opinions and since they are consumers as well, they can offer more realistic recommendations to others. A potential customer will look at these reviews and if they are positive, this will lead to them trusting your business. There are many ways you can promote customer reviews. For one, you can find positive reviews and post them on your website for all to see. You can also make accounts on review platforms so people can more easily create reviews about your business. There are generic sites, like Yelp, but there are also niche sites related to specific industries.
ENGAGE WITH YOUR AUDIENCE
To build trust, you need to foster connections and relationships. There is no better tool for this than social media. Using social media for your business can benefit you in many ways, including as a marketing strategy. However, it is primarily useful for its ability to connect people. With social media, you can show a more informal or personal side of your business. You can also easily communicate with your audience. Create polls, ask questions that encourage discussion, and respond to as many people as you can. You can also respond to DMs that people send you. Engaging with your audience on social media shows your customers a different side of your business and it allows you to connect with them more.
ASK FOR INPUT
In addition to reviews, you should also ask your customers for feedback overall. Customers will trust businesses that are willing to make adjustments and accept feedback. You can provide a spot on your website for customers to leave feedback. If you have a physical location, you can provide flyers or cards with links to your website and inform them on how they can leave feedback. You can also offer surveys after phone calls or in emails after they have made a purchase. Show your customers that their input is important to you and that you’re willing to implement it.
When building trust with your customers, it’s not a one-and-done situation. You need to consistently earn your customers’ trust and give them reasons to trust you. A part of this is being consistent. No matter what you do, make sure your messages stay the same. You want to make sure they all display the same values. Similarly, you want to make sure your customers have consistent experiences. If things are different each time they work with you, they won’t be inclined to trust you.
Establishing trust with your customers is extremely important. If your customers trust your brand, they are more likely to continue doing business with you and may even recommend your business to others. Make sure you do all you can to create a trustworthy and well-rounded brand.
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