Establishing a foundation of trust, honesty, and integrity is paramount to building a loyal customer base. Businesses with a history of reliable quality and service, ones that prioritize consumers’ interests and needs above bottom lines, have a way of outlasting their competition.
For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau’s Standards for Trust serve as guidelines for earning long-lasting consumer confidence. Our standards promote lawful business practices and define how ethical advertising, selling and other elements of a positive customer experience should look.
Right now, consumers are asked to shop safer and smarter. Here’s how the BBB Standards for Trust can help your business support their efforts:
The trust you build with your customers is invaluable. Trust is something that is earned over time and lost in moments. This holds true for trust between you and your customers. Because of this, it is important to make sure you are doing all you can to protect your customers data and information.
Stand out to your competitors. Consumers are bombarded with ads throughout the day. There are ads on every webpage, before and in the middle of every video, in apps, in between posts on social media – and that’s just the digital world.
Since there is no way for consumers to see every ad out there, marketers need to do something special to grab users’ attention. Honest advertising has a shock factor. People are used to ads overly pushing for a sale; a company being completely honest is surprising. For this reason, when customers come across an honest ad, they’re far more likely to take notice.
Tell the Truth.
True honesty is rare, but that’s exactly why businesses should practice it. When customers see it within your organization, they’ll love you for it and become loyal supporters of your brand and business. In the eye of a customer, the company that willingly admits their mistakes and owns up to the consequences is trustworthy.
Customers want transparency. Businesses know this and many of them talk about the need to be more transparent with their customers. However, when it comes to actually implementing transparent practices, many companies turn and run the other way. Being more open about your products, prices and results will set you up for success. When you have a potential client, set clear and realistic expectations.
Keeping your promises protects and may increase your bottom line. Delivering high-level services is difficult. If your company is willing to commit to delivering a special service or product, you should look into adopting a service quality program that includes the key elements of improvement: define, measure, innovate, train and sustain.
Keeping your customers is the key to ensuring they don’t become your former clients. Failing to meet deadlines or ignoring customer inquiries can increase client dissatisfaction with your company and may spur them to investigate your competitors’ services. When customer responsiveness is a priority, you’ll find that opportunities to serve your clients increase, while problems and service issues decrease.
Modern businesses collect a tremendous amount of information from their customers. This data includes highly personal details ranging from home addresses to credit cards. Collecting data can be a necessary element of processing payments and conducting marketing. It’s also a tremendous responsibility. When customers share their personal or financial information, they’re trusting your business to keep it safe. If you fail to do so, they’ll be motivated to take their business elsewhere. It takes a long time to earn a customer’s trust, but it can be lost in a moment if you’re not careful.
Building and then maintaining integrity is a long-term strategy for success. By choosing the right products, putting customers first, making promises your business and brand can actually keep, and sticking to your company’s values, you will build a long-lasting brand that customers and employees are proud to support.