Just an Online Minute... Flashy vs. Credible
Why is credibility important? Obviously, because it translates into visitor eyeballs that in turn translate into ad dollars.
Sadly enough, the study says that companies who fail to check the spelling on their websites risk damaging their online credibility just as badly as if they faced financial or legal troubles. More importantly, however, the study found that people have strong doubts about sites that carelessly mix editorial content with advertising, even if they uniformly trust websites they consider useful.
"If websites were cars, it would be the trusty Toyota not the flashy Ferrari that would win the Web credibility race," said Stanford’s BJ Fogg, who runs the Persuasive Technology Lab.
According to the findings, study participants reacted unfavorably to sites that use pop-up advertisements or fail to update copy. Broken links, poor site navigation, and links to sites perceived to be non-credible were also among the highest negative influences.
The research team developed 55 observations to describe a site's design, content, performance and ownership, and asked study participants to indicate how each statement affected believability from a score of 3 (high) to -3 (low). The most notable were:
Something to think about for your next online campaign.