By C. Jeff Oakes
What Are the Elements of a Credible Business?
According to author Pete Blackshaw,
Credibility is the only currency in the vast and noisy marketplace.
Indeed, in times past, the buzzword for business was “service,” then it became “quality,” and today it is “credibility.” Why the changes?
First it should be noted that in reality, each of these concepts convey the same fundamental idea…that a business that is worthy of our
time and money should be one that will provide us with a good product or service at a fair price. In other words, if a business provides great service, then we have spent our money well; if we receive a quality product, the same can be said; and if the business is credible, then we know that we shall receive what is fair from them at all times and should we not, the business will make good.
So whereas each of these concepts relates to the other, in short, each refers to credibility.
According to the website, marketingactuary.com, Pete Blackshaw lists six elements that define a credible business. These are:
- Responsiveness [to feedback]
- Affirmation [verification/confirmation]
What is more, Google, when creating the algorithm that would change the way we view search engines, implemented their own concept that would define a credible web site, or credible online business. Some of the elements identified as clearly included are:
Google looks at links coming from other reputable web sites as proof that these web sites consider your to be credible. It is much like a good friend recommending a business that he/she has done business with. The friend with a good reputation in your eyes will have his suggestion viewed well and the friend with the less-than-good reputation will be take with a “grain of salt,” so to say. Trust begets trust. It is that simple.
The business that takes the extra step to become certified with professional business associations (such as the Chamber of
This is seen best through the contact page and the methods of contact made available; in addition, a credible business will not be afraid to list their corporate city location, for in so doing, a consumer can check them out through such agencies as the BBB, even if they are not a member. In addition, if the web site hides certain features, like masked keywords, Google’s crawlers will mark these as less-than-credible, for if someone hides one thing, what else are they hiding?
This is an area wherein Google has yet to implement any kind of specific tracking (as far as we know), but certainly a web site that fails to respond to customer issues or comments will soon find themselves without customers. Of course, it could be noted that social media provides a great medium for web site/client interaction and these are taken into consideration in the search algorithm. In fact, the whole concept behind the Panda Update is to track which web sites develop visitor interaction and this plays a role in determining Search results via credibility.
Perhaps no consumers are more savvy than those on the Internet, for if you make a claim, your visitors are likely to confirm this through other sources. If not confirmed, your credibility suffers. One of the easiest ways of affirming credibility on a site for the algorithms is to look at how easy your site is to navigate. Those who have taken the time to ensure that their visitors can move easily though the web site are viewed by the search engines as more credible; those that do not…less credible. Linking to reputable sources that can back your claim also add to your web site credibility as can testimonials.
Credible Business Off and Online
In short, the elements neededto create a credible business are the same whether it is a traditional brick and mortar business or an online business. However, there is considerable confusion about how to implement these concepts online, for although traditional businesses have been teaching these concepts for decades, the Internet is still an infant and much of this information has yet to catch
For this reason, Oakes Writing Consultants was formed…to teach traditional business owners the simple techniques of transforming their successful traditional businesses into successful online businesses. In the next segment, Elements of a Credible Website, we will explain in very simple terms exactly what is needed to have a credible online presence.
We believe that there is too much mystery surrounding the Internet and that the principles employed are very simple to learn and use. For this reason, we offer this information free of charge to any who wish to read it, but also offer private consultations as well.