by Stephen Christopher

Trustworthy Words: Building Trust with Online Customers

3 min read


In order to get your current or future customers to want to use you, you have to build trust, and when those customers visit your company’s site, you have to build trust in a short amount of space on an online forum. This requires you to build trust through the language you use on your website. Since your customers will be using digital means of learning about you, you don’t have the luxury of body language, intonation, eye contact, etc. to build a relationship, so you have to rely on words.

To build trust quickly and efficiently when someone visits your site, use straightforward words like these to convey this:

· Authentic: customers want to know you are being genuine with them and will give them real information, advice, and service. Use this word to show them that you are reliable.

· Ask: using this word when conveying a message to your audience implies that you have the answer. Be the authority in your field, and let your potential customers know they are welcome to come to you with questions because you know the answers.

· Dependable: show your audience that you are going to be there when they need your service. This shows them that you’re steady, available when they need you, and committed to them as a customer.

· Guaranteed: this one is straightforward, and it is used a lot because it works. If you guarantee something, you stand behind it. You’re giving your audience assurance that you give your word something will be done well; you’re letting them know that you stand behind the manner in which you provide your service.

· Honest: people want to know that a service provider is going to give it to them straight: is fixing my drain pipe actually going to cost $125, or will it cost me $500 after labor charges, ordering parts, etc.? Do you mean it when you say you will arrive between 10 and 12? Do you mean it when you say an installation will be done correctly the first time? Basically, your potential customers need to know you’re reliable, straightforward, and truthful.

· No Obligation: no one wants to feel as if they are obligated to do something. When you use this phrasing online, you’re letting your audience know that you are willing to be flexible, and you understand that they, as the potential consumer, are in a vulnerable position. Let them know they can bow out at any time, and they won’t want to.

· Research: let your customers know that you understand what you’re doing because it’s proven. You aren’t just experimenting and hoping something works out on their dime. If you’re doing something that’s proven and/or that has research backing it, let them know.

· You: this may seem obvious, but use the word “you” to let your audience know you’re talking to them. This makes your message feel personalized – rather than just talking into space – and lets them know that the service you provide will be catered to them and their needs.

Whatever words you choose, let them be authentic. Cater your message not only to your audience, but to your brand. Don’t say you guarantee you will be there at 1:00 on the dot if you’re not sure you can make it; don’t tell your audience that you provide a research backed service if there is no such research; don’t say no obligation if you’re going to make your customers sign a contract. Be honest and up front with the language you use, and let your customers know that they can actually count on what you say.

Go and check out the language on your site to see where you can place these trustworthy words, and then go to to get our free website analysis – we’ll let you know how your site is doing, and we’ll be happy to check out the language in your content to make sure you’re conveying messages to your audience in the most efficient and trustworthy ways.

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