The vast majority of Web site owners on Net focus all their time and attention on two things: building their revenue and increasing their traffic. However, as important as traffic and money are, many site owners don't pay sufficient attention to another fundamental, but crucial, challenge: building credibility for their sites.
Why is credibility important? Because it ties in directly to other "big two" goals: money and traffic. If your site builds credibility, you're already well on your way to success on Web.
Credibility, of course, is important for any type of business. But, more so than in "brick and mortar" world, credibility is even more crucial on Web.
Consider nature of Web. Literally anyone can set up a basic Web site, with a minimum amount of effort. Truly worthwhile and compelling sites are far and few between. Therefore, if you have a site that has credibility, it tends to stand out from crowd.
So-called expert Web marketing gurus are always rattling on about importance of "stickiness" for sites. Every month, it seems someone has a new theory on how to increase stickiness (or amount of time that your visitors hang around your site). The fact is, if you want a "sticky" site, (as well as a devoted and loyal audience), you've got to build credibility.
Increasingly, Web users are becoming more and more wary and skeptical about information they get on Net. This wariness is entirely understandable. For all information that Net offers, very little of it is actually quality, accurate information.
In this atmosphere, relatively few sites that are deemed trustworthy and credible have an automatic major advantage over vast majority of sites. If your site is credible, then you're not really competing with tens of millions of sites...in effect, you're only competing with mere thousands of sites out there that have a credible reputation.
Credibility is not easy to achieve on Web. But it's still a goal that any Webmaster can accomplish, particularly if you follow a few basic steps:
1. Be honest and straightforward. It doesn't matter if your site is about fishing or if you're an online merchant. Honesty pays---especially on Web. It is vital that information that you present on your site is accurate. Doublecheck your sources. The fact is, if you have inaccurate information, even on a minor issue, your credibility will suffer. If visitors find even one inaccuracy on your site, they'll wonder if any other information you're presenting is false, as well. Honesty and accuracy are particularly important for online merchants. The fact is, Web has been a bonanza for dishonest merchants and scam artists who love to operate in anonymity of cyberspace. In this atmosphere, people are (understandably) likely to trust only Web merchants who've earned a measure of credibility.