8 Elements to Build Trust On Your B2B website

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trustWe’ve previously discussed how to increase B2B sales with trust elements on your website. In this article, let’s show how these tips are put to work with a real live site: Freshdesk.com, one of the most popular (and trusted) help desk software in the market today. Let’s start by rounding up the key trust-building techniques, and then see how one of the most successful SaaS vendors leverages them. These top trust-building elements are:

  • Display your contact details
  • Show yourself
  • Show your product
  • Show price
  • Display trust marks
  • Display your awards
  • Blog authoritative content
  • Show genuine customer testimonials

1. Display your contact details

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Showing your contact information reflects transparency and projects legitimacy confirming that you’re an actual company based under an actual address with an actual phone number that customers can call if the need arises. Freshdesk sees the importance of contact details enough to show its users it has offices in all its four major markets: USA, UK, India, and Australia. It’s got the physical address and phone numbers for each office. It also has an email form and live chat tool that reinforce the perception that the vendor can easily be contacted. Freshdesk’s contact us page is definitely worth emulating.

2. Show yourself

Buying software can be overwhelmingly technical. For SaaS products, the purchase journey can get impersonal with the buyer facing a computer screen reading text and graphics and nothing more. Putting a face behind the software reminds the buyer that there’s a real person behind the product.

trust2Freshdesk leverages its About Us page to show real living people–its leadership team from the CEO to the vice presidents. The vendor understands that when buyers check this page, they want to know more about who’s behind the software. What’s more, the vendor understands that many of these buyers will check the individuals’ social media, mainly LinkedIn or Twitter, to connect. Girish Mathrubootham, Freshdesk CEO, sees the advantage of using his personal Twitter to project thought leadership about customer service, which reinforces the software’s claim as a leader in help desk solutions.

3. Show your product

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Buyers can relate more to your product if you show it; in SaaS case, show screenshots of the actual interface. Freshdesk has plenty of visuals for its key features, complete with directionals and highlights to draw buyer’s eyes to the tool in focus. Instead of overwhelming buyers with block paragraphs to explain the software’s main benefits, Freshdesk uses visuals to deliver the message in digestible bite-size details.

4. Show price

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Price is a major factor for B2B buyers. However, it isn’t the amount that matters, but the value that the price represents. That’s why most SaaS vendors have plans for small businesses, medium enterprises, and large companies. But Freshdesk takes pricing to a higher level, offering a freemium (Sprout Plan at $0) to get more leads. Likewise, the vendor offers a free trial that uses a robust plan (Estate) to ensure subscribers experience the software’s important key features. You too, should make sure your free trial offer is rich enough to convince buyers to get a paid plan.

5. Display trust marks

Trust marks are a seal of approval from a credible third party. They either validate that your business has a legitimate presence (e.g. BBB seal) or that its website is technically secure (e.g. Norton Security seal). There are also trust seals that focus strictly on B2B products, verifying the quality and reliability of your product based on the standards of the B2B industry. An example of this is FinancesOnline Verified Quality Seal, which signals to buyers that the software features meet the highest standards of the SaaS industry and the vendor has a reputable customer support service. Freshdesk leverages this seal to get a headstart in its niche, cloud-based help desk solutions. If you want to improve credibility and sales of your product you can request a quality seal here.

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Here’s a tip: B2B review sites can act as an extension of your website, either as a lead generator or social proof resource. For example, a buyer who sees your software on FinacesOnline review page and likes it will visit your website for more information. Conversely, a buyer who visits your site may check B2B review sites for objective reviews about your product. Hence, Freshdesk’s use of trust seals on B2B review sites has a  strategic importance. See this article for a detailed list of top B2B software review sites.

6. Display your awards

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In the same way that trust seals are third-party signs of approvals, industry awards also showcase that your product has been noted by an external party. They reflect your winnability in the eyes of buyers.

Awards aren’t limited to those given by major industry events. You can also leverage the awards and quality certificates being given by B2B review sites. Freshdesk understands that waiting for a major award takes time and it leverages the special awards that highlight the software’s key values. For example, to improve their trust they showcase some of these B2B awards and quality certificates. Freshdesk merited the Expert’s Choice Award for 2015 and Best Help Desk Software for 2015 both awarded by B2B experts from FinancesOnline. Your software can also take advantage of similar special awards from various B2B review sites. Here, you can suggest your product for a B2B award.

7. Blog authoritative content

A corporate blog has two important uses: as a portal from which you share your thought leadership content across social media and other websites; and as an SEO tool to get leads from search. As a thought leadership portal, your blog should have insightful original articles that others will be willing to read and share. Let’s take a look how Freshdesk manages its blog.

First, the vendor uses a subdomain address for the blog (blog.freshdesk.com) to generate SEO for the main domain. This setup will be valuable in the future as the blog increases its SERP ranking.

Second, Freshdesk uses original topical content–not just product pitches–to attract readership.

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Third, it employs real authors to lend to the article legitimacy. Writers can be sourced among your key staff or outsourced to third-party content marketing agencies.

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Fourth, Freshdesk uses its client base to develop stories that relate to their product. You, too, can talk to your customers and ask them for interviews that you can turn into content. This approach also serves another purpose: a case study about your client’s experience with your software.

8. Show genuine customer testimonials

Displaying customer testimonials gives your website a social proof that can build user trust with a first-time web visitor. But such testimonials should be done with sincerity and interesting angle that triggers the buyer’s emotions. The more personal the testimonial, the better it resonates with readers. For example, the CEO of Freshdesk shares his personal encounter with a Lyft driver, who’s also a customer rep in an internet security company. This is a great testimonial that evokes candidness:

“Story of my Lyft ride – Yesterday I took a Lyft ride in San Francisco and I met this guy (James) who was my Lyft driver driving an old 2000 BMW. We talked about Beemers and then I asked him what he does for a living other than driving for Lyft. He told me he worked as a customer support agent in an Internet Security company. I asked him what tool his company uses for support and guess what- he told me that they use a tool called Freshdesk smile emoticon. Thank you @James Slingerland, you really made my day!”

CONCLUSION

Freshdesk has stuck to the time and tested trust-building techniques for its website and digital channels and it’s now reaping the benefits as one of the most popular help desk solutions in the market today. These techniques, however, don’t guarantee that your website will magically earn credibility out of thin air; that should start with you, how you conduct business and treat customers. What these techniques will do is help you to tell customers that you’re, indeed, trustworthy.

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