There is a very effective way to increase user trust of your website, but, ironically, it has nothing to do with your site. It is based on B2B review directories. Let us explain: in the recent Google/Millward Brown study on the changing face of B2B marketing, the search engine reported that buyers conduct an average of twelve searches prior to engaging a product website. It plotted the buyer’s purchase journey like this:
Engagement (12) refers to your website, which means, it’s only at the twelfth stage of the purchase journey that your website’s trust elements start to work for you. Prior to that, buyers will be searching generic keywords (2), comparing products (4), watching product videos (4), noting ratings (8), and reading user comments and reviews (10). Guess where all these activities are often happening? B2B review sites.
So, when thinking of increasing user trust on your website, think out of the box, or, in this case, out of your website. Look at B2B review sites as an extension of your website because your software most likely also appears in one or more of the top B2B and SaaS review directories. With this mindset, you’re reaching out to buyers at the early stages of their purchase journey, where you can right away showcase your credibility.
Here are 4 effective ways to increase user trust in your brand with the help of B2B review sites:
1. Tap the review site’s trust seal
Trust seals are symbols of approval for your product granted by a third party, usually after a thorough validation. Such seasl can show your website’s technical security or business operational legitimacy. A trust seal can also be specialized and focus specifically on the B2B industry, like the Verified Quality Seal provided by a popular B2B review directory FinancesOnline. This seal is unique because it focuses exclusively on SaaS software niche and signals to buyers that the software features are of high quality and the vendor’s support is reliable. This seal also effectively complements a technical security badge like Norton and a business trust mark like BBB.
We mentioned in the past that you should display trust seals on your website to increase user trust rating. But you also want to display the seal on a B2B review site, where buyers are likely to see your product first, based on the Google study quoted above. Here’s how a trust seal looks like on a review page at FinancesOnline:
Another advantage of tapping the FinancesOnline trust seal is this: other major trust seals may prohibit you from displaying their seal outside of your ecommerce page. This means buyers are not seeing the trust seal during the critical initial product research phases. Incidentally, Verified Quality trust seal can be easily displayed on your own website and social media pages for maximum exposure.
2. Leverage special awards and certificates
B2B review sites constantly assess numerous software products in numerous categories, that they have become a sort of de facto lead resource for many B2B buyers. Why would such buyers scour the internet for all these products, when they can quickly locate all the choices and compare them in one location: a B2B review site. Because of their constant exposure to myriad software products, review sites have an industry insight to understand which products are the best in class. They announce their findings through product ratings, but some of these sites also have awards and special quality certificates, which can greatly enhance buyer’s trust.
Moreover, special awards given by review sites highlight your software’s key features or aspects. For example, take a look at some of the awards and certificates that your product can win at FinancesOnline, and examine the message they tell to potential customers of yours:
Awards granted by review sites also address the issue if your product hasn’t won any major industry trophies yet. A major award may or may not happen, but in the meantime, submitting your software for an assessment to merit any of the review site’s special quality awards gives your product an immediate source of winnability and credibility. If you’d like to apply for one of the awards above you can easily request a review here.
3. Reply to user comments both good and bad
B2B review sites can be an opportunity to showcase your awesome customer support. One reason why replying to negative posts is important is because potential buyers see that you take the time to address real customer issues.
Likewise, in some instances, a customer might simply have a mismatched expectation behind the negative post, which you can explain in detail if you care enough to write a response. For instance, a customer might wrongly assume you don’t offer full customer service when, in fact, you’re selling a separate support plan to get full support.
On the other hand, review sites can also be a source of testimonials. Replying to positive comments amplifies your software’s value proposition. In fact, you can quote these friendly posts in your website and place a backlink to the review site to let your web visitors see the actual comments. As a source of both negative and positive user comments, review sites act as a credible social proof for your product.
4. Ask for a detailed review
B2B review sites usually provide basuc reviews, where the software’s key information, such as, pricing, features, and integrations, are indicated for the potential buyers’ convenience. However, to fully expound on your product’s value propositions and uses in contextual scenarios, you can ask for a detailed review. A panel of B2B experts may be assigned to review your software and present its features and benefits.
A detailed review gives buyers a more in-depth look at your software. To achieve this, you’re likely be asked for access to your software’s main features so that the reviewers can thoroughly test out all the features. For example, here’s a detailed review of Wrike prepared by experts from FinancesOnline.
A detailed review also projects your confidence that your software will pass a close scrutiny, which signals credibility in the eyes of buyers. Likewise, with the detailed review, you have more room to put your best foot forward and merit the attention of potential buyers. If you’d get more positive exposure for your product you can ask for a detailed review here.
When you look at B2B review sites as your website’s extension, you begin to leverage their full potential to bring you more leads and, eventually, sales. Each review site will have varying marketing services so make sure you always check what kind of opportunities they offer that can improve your sales and brand recognition.