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How can businesses build trust with customers?

TRUST: A trustworthy reputation is one of the most important things that a brand can have

BUILDING TRUST in business is one of the most important things that all brands can do in 2019. Consumers care about the service and product they will receive, but increasingly we care about other facets of the business, such as its carbon footprint, and other socially responsible business practices such as equality or charitable giving. Indeed, 53 per cent of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that are transparent, especially on social media. So, how can businesses build trust with consumers in order to be as transparent as possible?

Encourage Honest Reviews
Allowing other customers to leave honest reviews is a huge factor in the purchasing decisions consumers can make. From Amazon product reviews to eBay buyer reviews and even Yell company reviews, customers can investigate whether the product they are buying is as it should be and will solve their problem. This works especially when the market is saturated and has a wide amount of people competing for the same customers.

Many industries offer us examples in this area, including the online casino business. Customers naturally seek out the best online casino reviews as, with so much choice in the market, peer reviews become a defining factor in choosing a site. It's not all about whether reviews are good or bad, though: a site that has a higher review from independent reviewers may indeed mean a customer is more likely to choose it, but finding out the facts and understanding whether the site is suitable for them and has what they're looking for is also important. The same applies to reviews on TripAdvisor, an independent aggregate travel site: not all negative reviews will deter customers. Some may have taken a personal dislike to certain aspects, which many other customers wouldn’t see as an issue. So, allowing honest reviews doesn’t necessarily mean negative reviews that will harm your business.

Be Socially Responsible
While looking for product reviews, customers will also be investigating the company that is selling to them, to ensure that they are socially responsible. A commitment to helping shine a light on minorities across the world and ensure nobody is worse off through prejudice also helps customers ensure they are choosing the right company. Companies which promote equality - such as BAME schemes or celebrating LGBT pride - have grown in recent years, as they realise that customers care whether the company gives back to those who might not have the same opportunities.

This can be a deliberately socially responsible company, such as TOMS - which offer a pair of shoes to someone in need elsewhere in the world, such as in Haiti, for every pair bought - to those which are just strong in their commitments to issues. For instance, John Lewis & Partners is considered socially responsible when ranked on a worldwide scale for its philanthropic efforts and for commitments made to employees (or partners). Rolls-Royce Aerospace is also considered strong for its socially responsible efforts from cutting edge sustainability plans to ethics training that helps employees and employers behave in a socially responsible way. The company are vocal about their research and development into ways to minimise their impact on the environment through the production of their vehicles and the maintenance of the vehicle once it's made.

Building trust is simple for businesses. It comes down to attempting to do good and offer strong products and services and then shouting about this and allowing others to be brand ambassadors to amplify this message. The sooner that businesses understand that human beings trust one another’s experiences, the sooner they will actualise their ability to succeed. Consumers increasingly care about the planet and on businesses giving back, so this is also important to consider. Following these two simple methods can help a brand be seen as transparent and therefore trustworthy.

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