Smart SEO strategies are essential to building links and sending massive amounts of traffic to a website. However, not all traffic is relevant to your business. You don’t just want visitors, you want the RIGHT visitors – potential customers.

As a startup builds its business, it’s important to focus on the right metrics. Research other businesses and learn from the mistakes they made. The trial and error over the past few years has led to many lessons that can be looked at for actionable advice and much has been published on the subject. If you look towards trends in the digital marketing industry, it’s clear that companies that inspire trust among their customers are the big winners.

It is no longer enough to just focus on marketing. Building trust among your customers and potential customers makes a huge impact. Here’s why:

Consumers trust other consumers

As consumers get more tech-savvy and aware about the numerous options available to them, they are less likely to settle for anything less than “good” (as defined by them).

Online platforms such as social media and review sites give consumers a voice their views carry a lot of weight with fellow consumers.

It’s only natural that a person pays more attention to a fellow shopper’s experience with a business than rely on what the company says about itself.

You no longer decide if your customer service is superb, your customers do. The instant and vast amount of information available on the Web means it’s crucial for businesses to create brands that inspire trust. That is applicable to all companies, big or small.

Traditional marketing was about businesses tooting their own horn, but today’s audiences have more information at their fingertips and will decide which messages resonate with them. Your customers are your best spokespersons. If you do not have them on your side, your marketing efforts won’t amount to much.

Websites that people trust are also those that Google trusts, which then perform better in Google rankings.

That may be a tad simplistic, but it’s essentially correct. User engagement, social proof, positive visitor experiences and helpful content are some of the factors that contribute towards the trustworthiness of a website. The authority of the content also matters. These are all outcomes of people placing their trust in a business. A high-ranking website attracts more visitors, especially if it is accompanied by a considerable amount of positive reviews.

Your marketing efforts should focus on earning the trust of those you want to impress.

Content from trustworthy sources gets shared

To some this may seem like stating the obvious. To others, this might come as a surprise, given that historically the general population has demonstrated ready eagerness to accept factoids of dubious provenance without bothering to check where they came from. This is also the reason rumors spread so fast.

That might still be the case but thanks to Google’s vigilance and the nature of the Internet, ill-informed or misleading content isn’t left unaddressed for long. It especially won’t find its way towards the top of search rankings.

Today, you can be certain that your content will only be accepted by the larger audience if it appears authoritative, factual and if you are a trusted source. The flip side, however, is that if you do manage to win their trust and collect social proof, you will find your content shared more widely and enthusiastically.

Marketing can no longer be divorced from customer experience

Trust is the new currency. People have to like your services and be willing to share their experiences with others. Once you have satisfied customers, it isn’t so difficult to get them to follow you on social media and spread the word about your brand.

However, do not make the mistake of thinking that marketing (as thought of in the traditional sense) alone can get you optimum results. Focus on creating a customer-centric culture in your business and let that reflect in your real world as well as the virtual one. When you put such a policy in place in the initial stages itself, you will soon reap the benefits that a trusted and loved business brings.

Have you ever got so involved in marketing that you have forgotten to prioritize the end-user experience? If you are wondering how a business can build trust or if you have some suggestions of your own, leave a comment!


Pete Peranzo

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