Managing Online Reputation, Credibility & Trustworthiness closes out the series of conversations with TalkFloor's Dave Foster about websites and building trust online. This last segment focuses on the role SEO [search engine optimization] plays in communicating credibility and trustworthiness to website visitors.
The segment runs 14 minutes and can be accessed by clicking on the following link [I've included Dave's description]:Christine B Whittemore, Simple Marketing on Retail Websites Part 7
Christine B Whittemore, Simple Marketing Now in an ongoing series evaluating some of the industry’s retail websites talks more about the various elements of a site that express credibility and trustworthiness to the consumer. In this segment Christine focuses on search engine optimization as she looks at some of the poor optimization she has found with many sites.
The notion of managing online reputation and actively thinking through how to express credibility and trustworthiness in a website highlight the importance of marketing for an organization. Although we are talking technology [i.e., websites and computers], what is far more critical is considering the business implications of online communications.
- attracting prospects to the business and converting them into leads and eventually customers
- delivering value that a customer associates with the business' product or service and differentiates it from the competition
- communicating dependability, competence and trustworthiness in a credible manner
Does your website do all of that for your business? If you were to experience your site as a new visitor - and potential customer - what perceptions about the business do you form? Is it good or do you notice strange, out of place, nonsensical elements?
Here's my advice for ensuring that your business website credibly communicates trustworthiness:
- Each webpage needs to have an unique goal and should focus on one primary keyword which appears in the page title, meta description and within the content. This requires that you know what your business is about, how it is diferent and how it adds value. Don't try to do too much on one page [or to 'stuff' keywords].
- Think of your website as your digital storefront. How do you ensure an enjoyable online store experience? How do you welcome visitors, use signage to communicate valuable information, answer questions and provide value? The same applies online.
- Identify your ideal customers [see Developing Personas For Content Marketing].
- Write to speak to that customer.
- Write your website content for real people. Not for search engines. Make sure it actually communicates valuable information that is relevant to online visitors. The better the quality of the content and its relevance to your visitors, the more likely it is to get indexed and appear in search results.
- Make sure you have enough content on each page. If you have an image or a video, explain its relevance.
Resources I mention in the interview with TalkFloor's Dave Foster:
- The Google Search Engine Optimization Starter Guide
- How To Do Bad SEO: 10 Examples
- ZMOT and Inbound Marketing: Perfect Together? Given that 84% of Americans engage in online research before making a purchase, it matters as never before for a business to get found online and to establish trustworthiness and credibility through its website.
What do you focus on when you examine your website? What have you found does the best job to support your reputation? How do you build online credibility and trustworthiness?