An unhappy user will leave a website within 10 - 20 seconds if left dissatisfied – one of the key factors that determines whether a user stays on a website is if they believe it’s trustworthy.

What features make people trust a website before buying?

The research, from Reboot SEO Agency found that 93% of people said that once they find signs of untrustworthy features, they will exit the website as soon as possible. This is due to 82% being concerned about malware and lack of payment security.

Reboot SEO Agency has investigated what makes users trust a website before buying. Reboot surveyed 1,322 people asking participants to choose their top five. From this, Reboot can reveal the most trustworthy features on a website are:

  1. Social media activity (47%)
  2. Recognised trust seals (47%)
  3. Affiliated with trusted websites (45%)
  4. SSL certificate (43%)
  5. Address and phone number listed (40%)
  6. A professional design layout (38%)
  7. Familiar payment methods (36%)
  8. No stock images (36%)
  9. Terms and conditions and privacy policy (31%)
  10. About us page (31%)
  11. Up to date Google/Yell details (25%)
  12. FAQ page (22%)
  13. Meet the team page (18%)
  14. Limited advert banners (18%)

Almost half of participants surveyed (47%) said that a company with consistent social media activity is the top feature that makes a website trustworthy - specifically, being active on Instagram. Reboot SEO Company found that 56% of users view a company that uses Instagram as more trustworthy than those using other social media platforms. 45% said they would not use a website that isn’t active on social media.

43% of people think that one of the most trustworthy features is an SSL certificate, with 58% saying that they would not use a website without one.Having familiar payment methods (such as PayPal, Mastercard, Visa, American Express etc) on your website ranked as the 6th most trustworthy feature (36%). 92% of users said that they would not trust or purchase from a website that uses unfamiliar payment methods.

Having an author bio was ranked as the least important feature that make a website trustworthy, with only 2% ranking it in their top 5.

Managing Director, Naomi Aharony comments about the importance of social media in building a brands credibility: “Social media is such an integral part of our online ecosystem its hardly surprising that it’s a top marker for trustworthiness when visiting a site. Findings confirm that its very common practice for a searcher who lands on a website that he/she has never heard of to double check its authenticity. And what better way of checking than to jump on their social media channels and check recent activity? A site with lots of buzz and followers can easily seem more authentic than one that has no such activity.”
Users also chose the top features that make them distrust a website, collating a top list:

  1. Pop ups adverts (65%)
  2. Grammatical errors & spelling mistakes (56%)
  3. Lots of adverts (52%)
  4. Very large discounts & broken links (45%)
  5. Blurry images (43%)
  6. No reviews (40%)
  7. No trust seals (38%)
  8. No SSL certificate (36%)
  9. Wrong currency entering a website (34%)
  10. Missing contact details (29%)
  11. Slow loading time (29%)

Rebootonline.com found that a website with pop ups makes 65% of users distrust the website. This is partially due to 82% of participants concerned about malware and security.
Correct grammar and wording on a website are one of the most important factors for 56% of participants. Additionally, 79% of shoppers said that they would not use or trust a website with grammatical or spelling errors.
The 6th most untrustworthy feature of a website is no reviews or case studies available as stipulated by 40% of shoppers. 65% saying they would not purchase from a website if there are no reviews.
RebootOnline.com also found that, surprisingly, 65% of people purchasing online would use a website that does not have an about us page and 75% said they would continue to browse on a website that is not mobile friendly.

Percentages will not add up to 100% because of multiple responses.

Source: Reboot SEO Agency.

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