Building trust is incredibly difficult, but also the most valuable foundation of any successful business.
After working with tons of online entrepreneurs, authors, speakers and bloggers from different niches, I now realize that most people just don’t know how to inspire trust.
In fact, building trust in consumers is a topic that most people don’t even bother exploring, let alone devise strategies for.
Most online course creators merely create a sales page, drive traffic through Facebook ads, and call it a day. I am here to tell you that this is simply not enough!
Your sales page is your best opportunity to sell the transformation your course promises and make people want to buy. If people get there and the page looks unprofessional, you’re leaving money on the table.
Think about it: you wouldn’t buy a car from a sketchy salesperson or a house from a realtor you don’t trust. Why would your target audience be any different? In the online course business, the quicker you build trust with your target audience, the more likely it is that they will buy your course.
In this article, I’ve listed the most effective ways to add credibility to your online course sales page. Combine a few of them or use them all and start seeing your sales grow.
1) Create a Consistent Brand Experience
Just like when you meet someone, the first impressions of your online course matter! It is impossible to inspire trust in people without providing a professional-looking and cohesive brand experience.
When you build a consistent brand experience for your audience, you immediately give people a reason to trust your business. And providing consistency it’s not just about using the same color palettes, or fonts on your site. It’s not even only about how you interact with your customers.
- It’s the tone you use on your blog posts and social media
- It’s the visuals you use on your sales page
- It’s the user experience of your online course
- It’s how your customer service agents answer the chat requests
Your brand experience should:
- Differentiate your online course from the rest. Are you elegant, serious, fun, classic, or what? How is your course different and unique? Make sure your brand experience communicates that in every way.
- Create a positive first impression. Inspiring, motivating, or evoking an emotion will help you connect with your audience immediately. For instance, if your course is selling a dream or specific transformation in their life, using inspiring images is the top first-impression generator.
See how Gabby Bernstein does this on her Judgment Detox Course sales page:
- Provide a consistent style across all web pages, social media and course content.
- Be authentic: Stay true to your beliefs and brand values. Show your real strengths, real achievements, and real emotions - people trust brands who are genuine.
2) Showcase the Value of Your Course Right Away
Every person that comes to your online course sales page is going to want the answer to the same question: what’s in it for me?
You need to make sure they see the value you offer right away! Use a big headline explaining how your course solves their problems, and what makes your course unique.
Just be careful not to focus too much on you and your company, otherwise, you can drive users away. Instead, focus on addressing their pain points.
3) Use Social Proof To Make A Point
Don’t shy away from making big claims – as long as they are based in truth, of course. When push comes to shove, students need concrete proof to take that plunge and enroll in your course.
So, how do you persuade students to trust you? What is the secret formula? Other students!
Testimonials from past and current students are an incredible way to build trust. Encourage students to review and comment on your course via social media networks such as Facebook and Instagram. Collect that positive feedback, and showcase it on your sales page - and include a photo whenever you can to increase the authenticity of your testimonials/reviews.
Video testimonials are also a really effective way to tell a student’s personal story and connect with potential and existing customers. Take a look at this example: The sales page of Start & Scale Online Course
4) Share The Human Side Of Your Business
It is human nature to automatically distrust brands and large corporations, as we are all well aware of their profit-driven nature. However, as social creatures, we tend to trust other like-minded people.
This is why it’s really important to show that there are REAL humans behind your brand, and the best way to do so is by telling a story to really pull at your customers’ heartstrings.
Introduce the individual behind the brand, and distinguish yourself from other content creators hiding behind impersonal jargon. For example, an ‘About Me’ section with a headshot or a short video distilling your motivations and hopes for the website are great ways to start building trust.
Don’t be afraid to talk about yourself and your story. At the end of the day, users’ connect best to human experience – you can talk about how you started, your goals, and aspirations, and what you hope to achieve with your online course business.
In short, tell a story, but also provide facts and figures that students can really rely on. Outline your struggle as a course content creator, and how you got to where you are now.
Make sure your sales page tells a story by following these simple steps:
- Share your story, candidly. Explain what led you here, and why.
- Explain clearly how you plan to help people. You need to convince people that you’re the best person for this role.
- Use your story to challenge people’s preconceived notions about online courses. Take this opportunity to distinguish yourself from other course instructors.
- Always, focus on the customer and their needs. Tell them exactly how they would benefit from the course.
I love how Chris Ducker creates empathy with the reader by telling his story:
5) Introduce A Guarantee To Build Credibility
Issuing a guarantee helps dispel any fears or reservations that potential consumers may have about your site or courses.
You can decide on a refund period like 30 days, and clearly show a ‘guarantee’ next to the pricing information. Also, it’s important to ensure that your guarantee is the focal point of your sales pitch.
If customers know that they will get their money’s worth – or a refund – then they will more likely invest in your service as a snap decision.
Similarly, refund policies should be clearly outlined in the terms and conditions of your site. You don’t want to provide unlimited content with a money back guarantee – essentially, you just want consumers to get a taste of what you have to offer, and hope that they stick around for good.
However, refund policies should be contingent on specific conditions like a student’s rate of progress in the course, or visible effort on their part.
In most of their sales pages, MindValley adds an "unconditional 10-day guarantee"
6) Provide Support Options to Ensure Student Success
With a huge number of online courses courses out there, students are constantly on the lookout for trustworthy course creators.
You can distinguish yourself from other online courses by demonstrating students that once they buy your course, they'll receive all the support they need to achieve their outcomes.
Look at all the trust creation elements Marie Forleo gives on her sales page:
7) Introduce A FAQ Section To Address Common Concerns
While quality customer service helps instill legitimacy and credibility, you don’t want to get bogged down by the same repetitive questions.
By creating a FAQ section, you give student’s access to important information without having to take out time to answer generic questions.
The FAQ section is also an excellent place to answer questions about your brand, the services you offer, and to showcase your expertise. In effect, you can use the FAQ section to stay ahead of the game, and preemptively answer questions.
Make sure your FAQ section is easy to find and is visible on your sales page page.
8) Create A Mobile-Responsive Design
One way to attract your target audience's attention is to ensure that your sales page runs efficiently on mobile devices. According to CIO Dive, 70% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices, and so, being mobile-friendly is crucial to ensure long term success.
If your sales page is not user-friendly and responsive, students will be immediately put off.
Great. You are now ready to weave each of these "trust factors" into your online course sales page to lead more people to trust you!