Published July 29, 2009

5 Strategies to Develop Customer Confidence and Trust

It's a proven fact that building customer trust in your products, your service and your company is a great way to increase profits and build a strong, dependable consumer base. No matter what industry you are in, customer trust is among one of the most cost-effective ways to keep the profits growing. When you build customer confidence, you can charge fair prices for your products and services, even if your competitors are offering some sort of special discount or deal. Customer trust overrides prices when it comes to day-to-day business. Here are five ways that you can start building customer trust in your small business:

  1. Highlight Professional Accomplishments, Certificates and Awards.

    If your company has been recognized by a professional association, the Better Business Bureau, the local Chamber of Commerce, or other such organization, then proudly display your commendations where customers can see them. This might mean adding an extra space on your website for accolades. Certificates and awards can be framed and posted for all to see onsite.

  2. Share Testimonials.

    Testimonials and letters can help build customer trust in your organization. Customers are willing to look at other success stories and compare them to their own lives. When customers see someone or something they can relate to, it builds confidence in your organization. There are some creative ways you can foster customer confidence with testimonials. For example, on your website, you can include video testimonials, as well as written letters. You can also print quotes or positive feedback from customers at the bottom of your store receipts.

  3. Be Honest and Straightforward.

    The key to building customer trust through marketing and advertising is being honest and straightforward. Don't develop messages that come with miles of fine print and disclaimers. Create basic marketing campaigns that highlight your products and services in a plain and simple fashion. Customer confidence is boosted when they see an ad and find that the details are in direct alignment when they walk into the store.

  4. Use the Power of One.

    Customer trust is largely dependent on interactions with employees. Encourage employees to develop personalized and genuine one-on-one relationships with customers. In addition, employees must lead by example. They need to do what they say the will do, such as returning a phone call or finding specifications regarding a product. Customer confidence is strengthened by meaningful interactions with others.

  5. Uphold the Reputation of your Industry.

    Reputation is everything when it comes to building customer trust. Certain industries have a bad reputation that simply can't be avoided. Take the used car industry for example. Dealers are known for being overbearing and putting a lot of pressure on prospective buyers. They talk fast and it's tough to tell if a customer is truly getting their money's worth. In this type of industry, protecting and changing the image is vital for success.

Customer trust is an important aspect of owning and operating a small business. Failure to meet customer needs and start building customer trust is one of the fastest ways to ruin a lucrative business opportunity. Treat your customers like gold in every aspect of the business relationship, and you will be well on your way to success.