Before a consumer grabs her wallet to pull out her credit card, she needs to trust you. She thinks… 

Are you credible? Will I regret this? 

There are multiple ways to build trust, and showcase your credibility. Today, I will be discussing two techniques, powered by consumer behavior studies.

So, how can you build trust? 

Demonstrate that you can fulfill her need. 

1] Use social proof

Social proof is simple. 

If others like it, then it must be good. 

Use testimonials of authority figures or similar consumer segments. Depending on where your consumer is from, you might want to choose the type of testimonials you want to include. 

  • If the target consumers are from a country with a high Power Distance Index (PDI), then you might want to use authority figures and experts for your testimonial. 
  • If the target consumers are from a country with a low Power Distance Index (PDI), then you might want to use similar consumers for your testimonials.

I know you might be wondering, what is the Power Distance Index (PDI) anyway?

“The first dimension, power distance, deals with our cultural attitudes towards inequality. It measures the extent to which the less powerful members within a society expect and accept unequal power distribution.” — Nathalie Nahai. Webs of Influence: The Psychology of Online Persuasion.

For more details about this topic, read: 6 Psychology dimensions to make sure your website is culturally fit

2] Offer a full money-back guarantee

Here is a fun fact. 

Consumers feel pain when parting their hard-earned money. 

“One of the key insights neuroeconomics and neuromarketing research have provided us is that buying something can cause the pain center in our brain to light up. — Dooley, Roger. Brainfluence

When you give consumers the assurance that if they don’t like your product, they would get their money back, they end-up feeling more confident about your product. After all, if you didn’t believe in your product, you won’t offer the full money-back guarantee option. Right?

“Every time your prospect thinks about buying, her head becomes a battleground for two opposing forces: skepticism and the desire to believe. Now, imagine an old apothecary scale with skepticism on one side and the desire to believe on the other. Let’s say her level of skepticism is a 7 on a scale from 1 to 10, 10 being “most skeptical.” And her desire to believe is a 5. It’s up to you to throw more weight onto the desire to believe side in order to offset the amount of skepticism she now experiences. Including a strong guarantee helps lighten the skepticism side and press down on that desire side. Sometimes it’s all you need to clinch the sale.” — Whitman, Drew Eric. Ca$hvertising.

But hey, did you know that the time period on which you make it available for your consumers to get full money-back guarantees, impacts the percentage of returns? 

Another fun fact for the day.

Longer full money-back guarantees result in fewer returns.

“Not only do longer, stronger guarantees boost your sales, but they (ironically) also result in fewer returns. Why? Studies show that short-term guarantees (30, 60, or 90 days) keep customers poised to make the return and force them to be more conscious of the return deadline. Longer guarantees (six months, one, five, 10 years, lifetime) give prospects confidence in the product and avoid the “beat the clock” mindset of using the product and sending it back within the short allotted time.”- Whitman, Drew Eric. Ca$hvertising.

To demonstrate you are trustworthy, you can either show that others whom your customers trust, trust you, or show your confidence in your product by offering a full-money back guarantee. It works even better if you use both techniques. 

The more I learn about those consumer behavior tricks, the more I am amazed.

I know I bought an online course because I read a testimonial from an expert whom I trust. Whether that course would help me to the extend I hope it would, that’s still a mystery to me. I know one thing fore sure. I picked up my wallet and pulled out my credit card… 

And Oh, by the way, the course offered a full money-back guarantee for 30 days… And, Yes! I was alert during those 30 days, trying to make up my mind if I want to return the course and refund my money. 

In case you are wondering, I didn’t refund my money.

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