By Taz Bareham — 17 May 2012
People want to know who they’re doing business with when they book online, especially in the tour and activity sector. The fact that their decision is being based on what they find about your business online means that communicating your corporate identity is much harder to achieve than if they were to waltz into your shop in person. You essentially sell experiences, and website visitors must feel that the experience they buy is going to be worth it.
To help prove your worth, they need to get a feel for your company, and you need to put human faces behind your business. They want their operators to be professional. They want to feel safe in your hands. This is especially true for adventure operators – for example, dive centres, where most experiences involve venturing out into the deep blue sea.
The best way of achieving this is by having pages dedicated to building credibility and trust. You can separate these pages or put them under one section – it doesn’t matter, as long as it’s on your site and it’s easy to find.
But what are the main elements you need to establish corporate identity through such pages? Here’s how two dive centres have done it right:
This is where you will put head shots of your staff members, and include any credentials or past experience they have to increase the trust between your site visitors and your tour or activity business.
Dive Centre Manly shows all their staff smiling, giving off a friendly feel:
The owner and course director is shown outdoors in scuba gear, obviously before or after a dive took place. This is effective at reassuring their viewers that they are in safe hands; Richard knows what he’s doing, he’s active and immersed in the business, and he created the business because he truly loves to dive.
Abyss‘ main image is fun, and they use this page to add a funny, personal element to it:
We particularly like how they show all their divers in gear and in action, getting them to list their favourite type of diving, favourite dive in Sydney, and favourite location. It helps you feel like you got to know them because it shows each individual’s personality.
This is where you’ll tout your awesome facilities and any additional credentials to build credibility and trust. It’s important to use photos along with your description, too.
Dive Centre Manly starts off by citing a complete list of technical equipment. What we really like about it, though, is how they repeatedly tell the readers how they will benefit from it, answering the ‘so what?’ question.
Anyone reading instantly knows why they’re telling you what they’re telling you.
By social proof, we mean what other people say about you. Since we’ve already covered the importance of user review sites, let’s delve into the realm of testimonials and awards.
With testimonials, it’s very important that you write the date (at least month and year) that the quote was given, and resist the urge to put a whole block of text up there! Keep it short and sweet.
For awards, we like how Dive Centre Manly has not only dedicated a page to them, but also separate them into their own sections:
There are 4 sections; Environment, Excellence, Business, and Community Recognition. All these certificates are social proof that they are trustworthy.
Building credibility and trust as part of your corporate identity is essential for any business – the trick is to learn how to do this through your tour or activity website. To learn more about using your website to grow your business, download our free ebook:
How do you communicate your corporate identity on your tour or activity website? Let us know in the comment section below.