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Credibility & Your Small Business: How to Ensure Your Company Maintains Trust from Customers

How to Ensure Your Company Maintains Trust from Customers

Nobody is going to consistently invest in a company that they do not trust. It is easy to build trust in a business relationship as long as you follow a few steps and commit to these steps for the long haul.

Below are some tips/steps with regard to credibility & your small business.

Always Be Genuine

Practically every person on the planet has had some type of unpleasant experience with a salesperson. In fact, many may have even abruptly walked away from a sales situation where they felt manipulated. Rather than acting or sounding like a salesperson, be genuine. Act the same as you would if you were meeting with a colleague.

Place Value on the Relationships

If you want people to value a relationship with you, then you must truly believe that the relationship is important to you and treat it as such. You must also have confidence in the fact that you have something of value to bring to the relationship.

Show Interest in Your Customers

Another tip regarding credibility and your small business is to be curious. People are drawn to those who show they have an interest in them. Having curiosity is a crucial element when it comes to building relationships. Having a steady interest in others opens the pathway to learning new things and making new connections with people.

Credibility & Your Small Business
Source: Stockphoto.com – O#23559 ID#4756320

Develop and Demonstrate Consistency

A customer or client’s ability to trust your business depends on whether you and your staff show this customer or client that your behaviors as an organization and as a person are consistent over time. People trust consistency. When a customer is able to predict your behavior, that customer is then also more likely to place their trust in you and your organization.

Be Truthful

Trust emerges when selling is approached as a way of helping someone. For a company, making it your quest to discover the areas where you and your customers can work together is important. Also, being able to point out when your company’s services or products are not the right fit for a customer or a situation is the epitome of honesty and forthrightness.

Stay Open Minded

Keep the customer’s best interests at heart and openly discuss options with them. Being narrow-minded and adopting the idea that your product is the only right choice for the customer may give a customer the sense that you do not have their best interests in mind.

Have Real Conversations

Every time you meet with a customer, have a conversation rather than slapping them with a sales pitch. Spend some time listening to your customers. Make sure the conversation has substance and is about real business issues, not just small talk.

Keep Things Professional

Customers tend to trust organizations and individuals within organizations who are serious about what they do and are willing to take the time to achieve a deep understanding of their particular tasks and overall work. Taking the time on a daily basis to learn more about your customers, their industry, and whatever challenges they have is important.

A final tip regarding credibility and your small business is to show real integrity. This means that you are willing to take a stand even when it is unpopular to do so with your customer or with your company. This does not mean you need to be adversarial, but you should have the ability to make decisions based upon what you know is right. Another way to show real integrity is to never promise what you cannot deliver.

Gaining trust and credibility is only part of the equation to success. You should also have a product or service that customers really want and need, as well as the ability to show how you are adding value, solving problems for them, etc. It’s important to remember that if you don’t earn the customer’s trust they will probably go elsewhere, even if their offering isn’t as good.

People want to feel secure in the company they are doing business with. In this regard, building trust is key to getting to any of the next steps in building a solid relationship with your target customers. This will foster the relationship as they invest in you and your brand for the long-term.

After you have already established a trusting relationship with your customers, retain it by encouraging customers to leave reviews. It will be important to avoid shortcuts, emphasize customer service, and offer loyalty programs to keep the flame burning strong.

Is Your Virtual Number Provider Big on Credibility? How to Tell if You’re Getting the Best Services

Checking the credibility of a business or provider is an important step in building a long-lasting working relationship with any organization. Though most companies can look good on a TV commercial, sales brochure, or other marketing collateral, these types of materials most often only provide the consumer with a snippet of positive information. Truly getting to know an organization and the people who run the organization requires research, observation, and time. Building a relationship with an organization and learning about the people, products, and track record of the business will increase the likelihood that you will get what you paid for.

For example, many businesses are turning to virtual phone numbers for their communications. Is your virtual number provider big on credibility? How to tell if you’re getting the best services involves some time investment, but it’s well worth it. Here are a few ways:

Reach out to the Better Business Bureau (BBB)

The Better Business Bureau exists in order to help maintain an ethical marketplace where buyers and sellers trust one another and consumers are able to have confidence in the companies they choose to do business with. Checking with the Better Business Bureau to verify the credentials for a business prior to purchasing any products, using any services, or entering any kind of business agreement with the company helps in establishing a trustworthy and solid relationship.

Search for and Read Consumer Reviews

Reading what others think about a company is easier than ever, thanks to the Internet. Many people share their experiences whether they are good or bad, provide ratings and comments, and even provide when specific inquiries are posted. This can be very helpful when doing your due diligence to determine if a company is credible.

Ask for Feedback From Family and Friends

Reaching out to ask family members, friends, and neighbors about a particular organization prior to scheduling a service or purchasing a product or service can help to narrow down the businesses that you should do business with and which ones you shouldn’t. Your family and friends will typically know the quality you expect, so having these types of conversations with people you already trust can save you money and time.

Access Consumer Reports

Reading consumer reports to learn more about companies is one of the oldest and most widely trusted sources when it comes to learning about products prior to buying something. This is the same when you are purchasing a service and looking into a company. So, when determining credibility, going to consumer reports as a reference is an obvious choice. Looking for basic information on the Consumer Reports website, www.consumerreports.org, you have the option to subscribe to the service for specific ratings and other important information. Subscribers are also able to take advantage of online discussion forums to converse with others about products and services, ask questions, read reviews, and share reviews of their own.

How to Tell if You’re Getting the Best Services
Source: Stockphoto.com O# 100006653347 ID#100200144052

Other Ways to Learn About a Business Include:

Google Searches

When almost anyone has a question about anything these days, they turn to Google. Putting the company name into a Google search will help you discover a plethora of things, from reviews to feedback pages to articles mentioning the company and more. The trick is to decipher which sources are credible or not, so don’t automatically believe everything that comes up in your search. Read up on the company from multiple sources and draw your own conclusions from what you gather.

Check the Company’s Website

It is fairly easy for anyone to put up a webpage, so the fact that a company has a website is not the only determining factor in figuring out if they are credible and legitimate or not. Check to see that contact information listed on the website is accurate. If there is no way to contact a company, that is typically a red flag. You can look up registration information for the web address using a website called who.is.

Ensure Modes of Payment Offered Are Secure

Another important determining factor is whether the company offers secure modes of payment. PayPal and Google Pay are a couple of commonly used secure modes of payment. A truly legitimate company will offer these types of options because they know it offers the customer an extra layer of protection and confidence in the organization.

Before deciding on a virtual number provider or any other type of company you need to do business with, it is important to do some research and look to ensure that the company is big on credibility. This will help you to trust the company and support a solid relationship between you and the organization.

Communication, Credibility, and Trust When it Comes to Your Staff

Business leaders who win are those who communicate openly and regularly, have a clear and committed communications policy, initiate various programs to support communication and collaboration, and assess their own performance. Communication, credibility, and trust are all important to building a reliable team.

Leaders often talk about building trust. Trust is something that must be earned. It is not something that today’s business leaders can take for granted, because both internal staff and external customers and clients are increasingly less trusting. Establishing open communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is critical to the ultimate success of a business.

Trust is at the Foundation of Successful Businesses

With allegations of large corporations taking part in fraud out of greed, trust has been eroded in every direction and new rules have been set with regard to how businesses are expected to operate. This applies to communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff as the internal workings of a business is where it all starts and where everything builds from.

Employees, investors, customers, government entities, and regulators are increasingly demanding greater corporate accountability and transparency. These types of measures are aimed at curbing excesses of businesses and protecting the public.

Despite these new developments and higher standards, business leaders of well-respected, high-performing businesses have long acknowledged the value of building and sustaining trust. Again, establishing solid communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is at the heart of all of it.

Great Communication Fosters Trust

Building trust in a business’ leadership requires a personal effort on the part of the business leaders themselves. It is a team effort as well, but it starts at the very top. The corporate function that is most likely to support business leaders’ efforts to build and sustain trust in the long-term is communication.

Communication contributes to the creation of a business environment of trust around the leaders themselves and enables them to lead more effectively, engage their employees, and ultimately deliver the best possible results. Communication serves as the primary positioning agent for overall message delivery and leadership development for managers. The most successful business leaders have learned this fact from the first-hand experience.

Communication Credibility and Trust
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Excellent Communication Leads the Way to Credibility

Communication cannot alone make a person trust someone who is not trustworthy, but it can help to create a culture in which trust can thrive. Building communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff is absolutely essential.

Breaking it down to the basics, leaders are people who are followed and people will not follow a leader they do not trust. Trust makes it easier to get into alignment and stay there. Trust is an extremely powerful force that builds loyalty, increases overall credibility, and supports effective communication within an organization. Trust gives you the right to benefit of the doubt in a situation where you would like to be heard, understood, and believed.

As any business leader or employee knows, trust can be severely tested when there are periods of high uncertainty and change during mergers, acquisitions, and other periods of transition. Despite a business leader’s best intentions, during these times it is often nearly impossible to communicate as much information as one would like. If one has a well-established system of communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff, this reservoir of trust that has been built will carry you through these times.

At the very epicenter of building trust, is communication. Today, with public confidence in many organizations failing, solid leadership, communication, trust, business performance, and reputation are all inextricably linked. A workforce that trusts its leaders and really understands what is happening within the organization will be more satisfied, more productive, and also better able to communicate and contribute ideas for improvements.

Leaders of successful organizations know that in order to create a culture of trust, one must share information quickly and freely, and build relationships with employees and other stakeholders, allowing for their businesses to thrive.

It is not just about providing information. Building trust also involves managing communications and consistently encouraging discussion around what needs to be done. Always providing opportunities for feedback is a great example of how this is done.

Communicating sincerely, honestly, and regularly may be challenging for some business leaders and managers, but the return on good communication is high. For leaders of large corporations, human resources and communications channels within an organization, a regular self-assessment of whether or not you are acting as a communications champion within your business model helps to cast light on what you are doing well and also helps to focus on areas that may need some improvement.

Measuring progress, getting feedback, and giving feedback are all supportive of the goal to strengthen communication, credibility, and trust when it comes to your staff and every effort will be well worth it.

How to Earn a Reputation Based on Credibility in Your Industry

There are a number of traits that can help a business earn a reputation to become more successful. Credibility is at the top of that list. Credibility means others look to your company as a reliable source and if others rely on you, they trust you and do business with you, and this propels your business ahead.

Being credible means that you establish and nurture a very specific set of qualities. It really doesn’t make a difference which type of organization or industry you are in – these qualities work the same across the board.

Learning How to Earn a Reputation for Credibility: Step by Step.

If you are serious about establishing yourself as credible, here are some tips regarding how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry:

1. Build trust: If you are wondering how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry, you have to start with trust. In order to cultivate credibility, you have to build trust, earn it, and maintain it. If people like you, they will trust you and they will be more willing to do business with you. The trust you build with your market is more important than your bottom line.

2. Become an expert: Being competent within your industry means having the ability to analyze a situation and develop several potential solutions. Being confident in your capabilities is important so that others know they can count on you.

3. Consistency: Another important tip regarding how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry is related to consistency. Everything that your company states and does should be consistent. The messages that your organization is sending out, the actions that you take as an organization, and the things you allow in your organization should all be in complete and total alignment. In figuring out how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry, this should be carefully considered as people do not trust a person or company that “flip flops.” They feel safe with consistency, knowing what to expect, and whom they can rely on.

4. Authenticity: In mapping out how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry, you need authenticity. When trying to earn trust, you cannot rely on the “fake it until you make it” approach. This will lead to disaster. The basis for establishing yourself as a leader and your business as a leading organization is a solid foundation that offers others long-lasting stability, no matter what challenges are faced.

5. Sincerity: Being credible equals being sincere. This means that you don’t necessarily say everything that you think, but you do mean everything that you say. True sincerity requires commitment and a willingness to be unmovable and straightforward no matter what.

6. Respect: Truly considering the feelings of others could mean everything to them. Treating others with respect because they deserve it and understanding why that is important is paramount. Respect earns credibility.

7. Accountability: In order to establish credibility, you have to be accountable for your actions and decisions. When making mistakes, it is important to own up to them and correct anything that stands as an error.

8. Loyalty: Credibility is connected to serving and protecting others. When you have the best interests of others in mind, and this is clear, this tends to build loyalty and credibility.

9. Honesty: In figuring out how to earn a reputation based on credibility in your industry, it is extremely important to be honest. Total transparency is a fundamental keystone to business and it is at the core of credibility.

10. Communicate: Communication is at the core of establishing credibility. This means that you need to make sure you are effectively communicating the vision of your business, helping your market to understand what sets you apart from your competition, and helping to carry your brand message through each of your marketing initiatives. This is also important within your organization, in building credibility with your staff and other team leaders.

Earn a Reputation Woman on Laptop
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Credibility Builds Better Business

Credibility as a business leader allows your staff to look at you as a reliable resource for decision-making and information. A leader that is credible has gained the respect of their peers and their staff by displaying positive and strong attributes. Credibility translates into improved employee morale, improved staff performance, and the ultimate success of an organization. Credibility is essential in building relationships within your industry as a business leader and as a brand.

Whether you own a brick-and-mortar shop, a virtual consultancy, or another kind of business, all businesses need to display honesty and credibility in order to gain trust and earn a reputation based on credibility within the industry they are in. Credibility has to be earned. It takes time and consistency to establish it, along with an effort to maintain it, but it is necessary on the ultimate path to success.

How Toll Free Numbers Can Be Used to Build Customer Loyalty

As your business grows, you may notice that your current phone number can’t handle the influx of new customers. Or maybe you’re missing out on customer calls because you’re using a landline and your customers are upset that they have to pay to call your business in order to make customer service calls. Perhaps you don’t want to take business calls on your personal phone line anymore. When these thoughts begin to creep in your mind, it’s time to think about getting a separate business line. Doing so can help increase customer loyalty and business credibility.

Benefits of a Toll Free Number for Customer Loyalty

So what is the best option for a separate business line? A toll free number has several benefits for a small business. The number one benefit of a toll free number is that it is a great way to begin building a loyal customer base.

Toll-free numbers or 1-800 numbers, as you may remember them as, grew in popularity in the 90s, but they are still prevalent today. One of the reasons is that they are a free way that your customers can make customer service calls to your company with. A toll-free number also gives your business the ability to reach a national audience no matter how small your company is.

So how does a toll free number build customer loyalty?

Recognition

Toll free numbers are easily recognizable, and therefore people have an ingrained trust of a business with a toll free number. Toll-free numbers have been around long enough that people know that they won’t get charged for calling one and therefore have no qualms about making a phone call to your business when they need to.

Branding

Toll free numbers were created to serve the people of the business that uses them. It also helps to brand your company as a trustful company because a company that chooses a toll free number is associated with a larger company. You get access to an entire nation of customers, too. You can take the number and advertise it on all of your marketing materials. From business cards to billboards, when people begin to see your number everywhere, they will start to recognize your brand and associate the number with your company.

Customer Service

Toll free numbers up to the ante on your customer service. Most people prefer to interact with a live human on the phone when they have a problem with a product or service. They want to speak with someone right away, and they want their issues handled immediately. When you refer to the web for customer service there can be delayed responses. Choosing to staff a friendly customer service representative will do wonders for your business because it helps to put an angry customer at ease. Since many of the issues in a company can be solved over the phone, your customers will be happy with the swift response time and help. You can also offer support to your customers around the clock. Only with a toll-free number can you provide 24-hour customer service which in turn builds customer loyalty.

Customer Loyalty Toll Free Number Call Center
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Did we mention it’s free for customers?

Again, customers do not want to have to pay to call a business that messed up their order. A customer service line should be free if you want your business to be taken seriously.

Memorable

Choosing a vanity number for your toll free line can also make your company much more memorable. Using a vanity such as 1-800-FLOWERS shows your customer base exactly what you are selling. Even if they forget the name of your company, they’re not likely to forget a vanity number like that.

It’s better than emails

When customers are frustrated with your company, no matter how polite you try to sound in an email, it is not going to come across well with an angry customer. Customer service lines are the best way to handle upset consumers. A brief email is no match for a charming human on the other line.

Trustworthy

If you are running an e-commerce website, people may be wary of your business. Many of these e-commerce sites are untrustworthy and sell damaged products. When your e-commerce company provides a customer service phone line, a person is more inclined to trust your company because you have provided them a way to get in immediate contact with your business in case something goes awry.