Websites present a considerable amount of information to users, both consciously and subconsciously. However hidden or glaringly obvious, on-site cues presented help build trust, maintain attention and encourage repeat actions.
Trust occurs when our physical, emotional and logical responses combine into one confident, positive feeling. When we place our trust in organisations or brands, our level of expectation for bold digital experiences rises.
There are a number of on-site cues that reaffirm trust, and a number that can completely ruin the UX; with the reaction reflected in revenue and customer retention.
On the other hand, making the wrong assumption about your users, by presenting them with misleading calls-to-action or making them endure painstaking loading times, will only damage the emotional framework you’re looking to establish.
Your site should not only run smoothly, but also represent exactly what you do and the message you want to convey, from the outset.
Keeping your content up-to-date and relevant sends a strong message about how trustworthy your organisation is.
Content should follow this vein by staying relevant, authentic and straightforward. Content will create that initial gut feeling users experience when they arrive at a site, which will help them form their opinion as to whether or not you are reliable or credible.
If your site gives users confidence, is designed with a clear hierarchy, and offers intuitive navigation that makes it easy to find answers and solutions, then you are reinforcing and creating trust through the UX. If your site simply suggests answers, but doesn’t offer them, or the answer takes that little bit too long to find, then you may lose the user entirely. By breaking trust, you are likely to create a chain of negative events.
As a site owner, your job is to provide answers to user needs. There’s nothing more frustrating than navigating to every page on a website without finding what you’re looking for. Just as the user should never feel lost or confused, they should also never experience apprehension about your ability to serve them.
Instead, offer authority on your area of expertise and make sure they get through pages with as little frustration as possible to complete their task.