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The quality of any personal relationship is built on the level of trust between two individuals and business is no different. If small businesses want to build a loyal customer base they must actively work towards strengthening the trust that their customer has in them.

What is customer trust?

Simply put, customer trust is the faith a consumer has in a company. It shows confidence in a company’s commitment to delivering on its promises and doing what’s right for the customer.

As a business owner, you have so many things that require your attention each day, but it’s crucial that you remember that without your customers and their trust, there is no business to own. I recommend all business owners to evaluate their customer journey and build in ‘customer trust points’. Customer Trust Points are intentional actions your business takes to build trust with your customers.

How to create customer trust points

1. Treat your customers like human beings

This can be achieved by communicating your message in a personalized way instead of sending generic messages to every customer. Using their name at every interaction is a positive first step. Send them messages at particular times of the year (birthdays, holidays etc) and adapt the delivery of the message based on their demographic.

2. Don’t hide things.

Nobody likes to be in a relationship with a liar! So, don't hide things from your customers. Be honest with your lead times and prices. If you make a mistake, don't cover it up, instead you should own and rectify it. Most importantly don't try to be something you are not. We can all see straight through people who are fake and customers can see through fake businesses too!

3. Check in with your customers outside of the transaction.

We all have that friend that only calls us when they need something. (I think I may have been that friend at different times in my life (sorry friends!)) It does not feel good, relationships need to be nurtured in order to flourish. Speak to your customers even when they are not transacting with you.

Talk to your customers, before, during and after the sale. Keep them updated with what is going on and it does not all have to be business talk either! Le them know what is happening in your industry and how it may affect them. Ask your customers for feedback regularly and do something with the feedback when you receive it.

4. Build in customer guarantees into your sale.

Show your own trust in yourself by offering your customer a very specific promise or guarantee and share the consequences of not fulfilling the promise. Think of when Dominos used to offer a free pizza if it was not delivered within 30 minutes. They quickly grew as a company during this time and it's not surprising. It's a terrible feeling when you order delivery and it doesn’t show for over an hour!

Final Thoughts

You may already have loyal customers, if you operate in a market with little to no competition. In which case, you may be asking yourself, well this is not relevant for me! To which I respond, how would you feel being stuck in a relationship with somebody that you do not trust? Probably ‘resentment’? The moment somebody comes along who can do what you do, those customers are very likely to leave you.

Trust is what connects your customers to your company. Devoting your time to building their trust is a crucial step to growing your brand and expanding your business’s influence. As a business owner you need to evaluate your customer journey to build in ‘Customer Trust Points’ into your operations.

If you would like some help to create some ‘Customer Trust Points’, contact me (if you trust that I can help!)

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Murtaza Manji - Managing Partner of Kaizen Business Consulting Group Dubai
Kaizen’s team of experts have worked with 1050+ companies across 16 different industries worldwide to achieve higher profits, greater productivity, and sustainable growth by creating efficient systems and structure. Get in touch today to see how we can support you.