Why customers won’t buy from a faceless business

Right before a customer buys from a small business they’re asking themselves one thing, “do I trust them?” In a face to face sale this question is much easier for them to answer, especially if they’ve spent a long time deciding about the purchase, but what about online? How do they decide if they trust someone before they buy online? 

A lot of businesses struggle to get customers to trust them enough to buy what they sell. So how do you build trust online?

People buy people

This well-known phrase is especially true online, so because your customer is making their decisions whilst staring at a screen you have to be present on that screen during their consideration process. This is what a lot of businesses owners refuse to accept. They think that their photos of the product or fancy graphics will do the job for them. They do help, but really what people want to see when they are deciding if they should buy or not is….. people.

They want to see happy people using the product, talking to you, doing the thing you help them do. They want to see a photo or video and think, “I want to be that person”.

Not showing up is losing you sales

If real people aren’t present on your business website, social channels or in your brochure, then customers don’t fully trust you. Guaranteed.

There will always be an element of risk in their minds about buying from you, and you’ll have to work even harder to overcome that. They’re thinking “How do I know your business is legitimate?” They might be thinking “Is this just a scam?”

Think about it like this, would you spend hundreds or thousands of pounds with a company where you didn’t know who was running it or had no social proof that they can deliver on their promise? If you just had a photo of the product and some stock images of a person smiling would you really trust these people to deliver? Wheres the happy customers? Wheres the proof that they’re good at what they do?

7 hours

In Daniel Prestley’s book Oversubscribed, he talks about a customer spending 7 hours with someone before they make a purchasing decision. When I first read this I thought this ‘sounds like a lot of time’, but think about how much time you spent researching buying your car, house, computer and you’ll quickly realise that 7 hours is perhaps even on the low side. So how can you spend 7 hours with your customer before they purchase?

Obviously, you can’t actually spend that time with every customer face to face in real-time online, but you can spend hours of time with them by creating content. You can show them that you are the right person to help them achieve the success they’re looking for. You can show them how your product works, what it does brilliantly and how much better you make people’s lives. If you provide a service you can show people how it works, what the process is and what the outcomes are, you can also show the results of the process and how much better your customer’s lives are now they’ve worked with you.

Not sure? Just try it

The first secret of success: Believe in Yourself. – Steve Goodier 

It can seem daunting at first, being in photos, videos and listening to your own voice is a real shock. I was the same, a few years ago I hated it all too and had convinced myself I couldn’t possibly do it. 

My business coach at the time thought differently, he knew I could do it. So he booked me a speaking gig, a 30 min presentation to a room of people and it all changed. I did it, and although I was nervous and had built it up to be a huge deal, it really wasn’t, it was actually great fun.

So my challenge to you is to just start. Post a photo of yourself doing what you do best, make a short video of you explaining something about your business that will help your customer.

It doesn’t have to be perfect, you won’t be as good as the other people you see on social media or the professional speakers, but that doesn’t matter. As long as you’re authentic people will watch and engage. It takes time to build up momentum with this and you won’t be an overnight success. But if you post it people will see it and you will begin to build that trust you need. So what’s really stopping you?

Your customers want to hear from you

Customers want to hear from you, see your passion and hear what you have to say. The only thing stopping that from happening is you. Perhaps you’ve not started before as you’re comparing yourself to impossible standards that take years to reach. You have to start somewhere and customers know that. The first 50 posts, blogs, articles, photos, videos are just the warm-up. So experiment, have fun, don’t take it too seriously and don’t focus on it being perfect. For it to work it needs to be seen, not stay as an idea in your head, or on your to-do list.

I’ve seen your video on that

People do business with people they like and they will spend 7 hours researching who they want to business with. If you and your team’s faces aren’t there during that consideration process then your competitors will be. 

If you have to choose between someone you trust and someone you don’t who will you choose?

It only takes one customer to say “I’ve seen your video on that” then make a purchase and it’s all worth it.

Impossible is a word used by those who gave up even before they started

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