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Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2011 at 7:30 am

12 Days of Conversions: Day 10-Reassurances

By Mariel Bacci
December 6th, 2011

Red Christmas present with caution tape bowVery few people trust you.  It isn’t your fault, that is the nature of ecommerce sites.  Between television programs about identity theft, holiday gifts that never showed up last year, and the coffee thermos they ordered online to mount on their bicycle handlebars that doesn’t fit, who can blame your customers for not trusting you?   Give your visitors the gift of faith in your ecommerce site, products and sales process this season.  During the holidays, people need reassurances that might not take precedence at other times of year. Here are a few things you can do in addition to your site’s already credible design to help your increased traffic convert at a higher rate this holiday.

1. Guaranteed Shipping Dates

Make it clear when your merchandise will arrive.  Copy like “Order by December 21 for guaranteed delivery by December 24,” gives your visitor a sense of security and a sense of urgency.  Offer 2 day or overnight shipping.  Last minute shopping is as frequent over the holiday as ever.  If you happen to have an electronic product, offer to e-mail or ‘ship’ it on your prospects selected date.  You might also offer to gift wrap it with a special message from the sender.

2. Exchange Policy

I rarely see a clear and quality exchange policy online.  You shouldn’t have one just to make a sale, you should have one to increase repeat customers.  By offer free shipping for returned or exchanged merchandise you will convert more users by reassuring them immediately, and if they have a problem with your product, they will be able to resolve it with you easily in the future. Instead of keeping the wrong size shoes and never ordering from you again, they will exchange them and continue their commitment to your site.  Zappos is one example of a site that has one of the best return/exchange policies on the web.

3. Money Back Guarantee

While any and all online companies should offer a money back guarantee, you should offer something better.  Try offering a money back guarantee including free shipping on returns, a 200% money back guarantee, or offer to give the visitor their money back plus a $10 gift certificate if they are not satisfied.  It might be scary to think that people will take advantage of these offers, but case studies have sown that they increase conversions without increasing product returns. If your product is good, you should stand by it anyway.  Give it a shot this holiday when an increased conversion rate is worth more than any other time of year.

4.  The Shopping Cart

There are basically three main ways you can reassure your guests in your shopping cart.

* Restate any offers or incentives you are giving the customer in the shopping cart.  A good thing to do is highlight and bold the actual discount in the running shopping cart total.

* Offer a variety of payment options, and show them off at the beginning of the cart experience.  Whether you have a one or 5 page (call us NOW) shopping cart people need to know if they have the proper payment method available right away.

Display safe shopping logos such as Hackersafe and Better Business Bureau.  Make the logos click-able and place them near the top of the cart page.  Restate your money back guarantee and exchange policy in this area as well.

5. Testimonials and Reviews

Remember how we said no one trusts you?  Luckily, they trust their peers!  Add testimonials and reviews to your site. The closer those testimonials are from people like your target audience, the better they are. Your visitors want to see testimonials from people just like them.

Every pixel of the design on your site should make your visitor feel safe.  How do you mange to do that for your prospects?  Reassuring your prospects that they will not get burned by shopping with you can be a subtle process that continues even after you have all the core elements.  Our OnTarget program will give you custom recommendations on how to persuade your visitors to trust and buy from you. Please share with us any good or bad experiences you have had with website reassurances, and tell us how you manage them on your own site.

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Comments (25)

  1. Very good article. I’ve always wondered how to gain trust from customers. Thanks!

  2. Online shopping is increasing but unfortunately this leads to the increase in fraud rate as well… By now people don’t want to go in to the rush hours and spend hours on buying stuff but on the other hand they have less trust on online shops as well… these are some of the great ideas how you can gain and build the trust on customers…

    Building a trust is not enough if you will be good with your commitment and customer services you will gain word of mouth which is better than any other mode of marketing…

  3. Trust is one of the most important keys to success in ecommerce world! Great post idea too!

  4. Believe in your product. Have awesome customer service ready. Take the risk by offering your product free for 14 or 30 days or offer a full 60 day money back guarantee.

    Live up to your promises and excell in your customer service and before long your customers will be recommending their friends.

  5. Great article. I like your post. Such a trust is one of the most important keys to success in ecommerce world. I am really impressed with your article post.Useful information shared.

  6. Great post.This article shows exactly how to gain customer’s trust,which would help in reputation. Thank you

  7. Mariel
    Learnt a few pointers from this.

  8. trust is one of the most important thing

  9. Thank you for the direction of your sharing, it’s impressively valuable.

  10. Believe in your product. Have awesome customer service ready. Take the risk by offering your product free for 14 or 30 days or offer a full 60 day money back guarantee.

  11. I think having guaranteed shipping estimates is one of the best rules. Customers should receive an email from you letting them know their product was shipped so they don’t have to ask. Don’t give them something to worry about.

  12. Trust, trust and trust
    important for everything

  13. live up to your promises

  14. Too bad a lot of ecommerce websites do not give these services! But when it comes down to holidayshopping I believe that the shipping dates are the most important !

  15. As a traditional marketeer before I got into IM, the most important thing in the storefront business was delivering whatever the client wanted or needed.

    IM marketing is quite a bit more difficult without the face to face relationship.

    However, what transcends both marketing efforts in my opinion is taking the risk out of the purchase. And that includes the shipping costs.

  16. yes, trust is very important thing in e-commerce

  17. Nice article. I follow up your post. Trust is very important of key to success in ecommerce world.

  18. whatever the client wants or needs.

    IM marketing is quite a bit more difficult without the face to face relationship.

    However, what transcends both marketing efforts in my opinion is taking the risk out of the purchase. And that includes the shipping costs.

  19. These are all good points. I will add that using your assurances and trust elements can work wonders when specifically placed right by your CTA’s.

  20. I actually always thought that people trust e-commerce sites too much. They just buy something expensive from some random website and enter their creditcard details without checking if the connexion has been secured. I am sure you guys have heard about all the UGGS victims that ordered UGGS, believing they were real, but in the end they turned out to be fake ones from fake websites. Don’t trust any website people, but look for well known bigger websites, you know you can trust.

  21. it’s hard to get every peoples trust when it involves money. Fraud is now increasing online, some were making fake website such as selling products online which is the aim is to get money from customers without sending the product they bought in return.BUT not all, you just have to be genuine towards all your visitors/customers.

  22. there is nothing anyone can do inorder to make trust. people trust multi billion dollar gaints and thats the truth and that remains the truth.

  23. useful tips. I’m gathering the testimonials now to beef up the website

  24. the most important things in site e commerce is test product and if the customer isnt satisfied Money Back Guarantee

  25. Trust is very important thing in e-commerce.

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Mariel is a GA certified analyst at FutureNow, Inc.

More articles from Mariel Bacci

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