You should keep your website as safe as reasonably possible. It doesn’t really matter if you have a personal blog or a digital storefront – if it’s online, and you own it, you need to make sure it’s safe. And if you’re a business owner, your responsibility goes up because you can be liable for any damage your website visitors might suffer due to your website’s security omissions.
But then there’s the whole trustworthiness aspect. It’s not enough to build a website that will be safe for the users. It’s also important that they can see it. Here are some of the visible security features, or at the very least elements that will help your website score a higher trustworthiness score with the visitors.
- Include Contact Information
Contact pages are common parts of websites. You can use them to post a contact form, your business’ email address, or other information about your business. And it’s very important that you include information that proves your business has a physical location.
Maps are great, but an address and a phone number will do. You might even consider including some of this information, like the phone number, somewhere on the website’s front page. It’s an important signal that tells visitors your business exists in the offline world, too. That makes it appear safer and more legit.
You want to be safe and covered if something happens. More importantly, however, you want to have a policy people will see. That will show them you take their privacy seriously. At the very least, it will show them you take your business and liability issues seriously, which is again a good signal. Everything’s better than appearing like an amateur.
- The “S” in HTTPS
A real safety measure you can employ on your website is to enable an encrypted connection. That’s what the “s” you see in website addresses that being with “https” means. It means your website is using an SSL certificate to protect the information exchanged between it and the visitor.
An SSL certificate is a very basic safety feature, which means that you cannot afford not to use it. Browsers will notify your visitors if you’re not using it. They will know that you’re not putting in even the smallest amount of effort in keeping their information safe. So you better get that certificate installed.
- A Verifiable Trust Seal
Trust seals are visually striking and attractive features websites like to use to demonstrate they meet certain safety conditions or standards. Seals can improve how trustworthy a website appears, which is why people like to slap them on even if they don’t meet the necessary conditions.
If you want to use trust seals the way they were meant to be used, you need to make them verifiable. When visitors click on them, they should go to a page that explains the criteria your website meets. You’ll find these pages on the website of the business that issue trust seals.
- Don’t Use Blackhat Techniques and Monitor for Malware
There are plenty of shortcuts businesses like to take to make their road to online success shorter. SEO spamming is one such shortcut. Suspicious redirects are another. Popups are a sign, too.
You don’t want to use any of these techniques. You also want to make sure that your website hasn’t been infected by malware that will turn people away from your website. It turns out you’ll have to keep your website actually safe if you want it to look safe and trustworthy to the visitors.