Teaching, Promoting, Cheering UX and SEO Since 2002

First, Convince Me to Trust You

Holly Buchanan from FutureNow has a fun blog post called Would You Buy A Bra From This Man? I watched it and no, I would not.

She’s seeking comments on the video advertisement. I responded with mine. But I’m really curious about ads like this one, where I’m convinced the advertising agencies don’t get away from their desks enough. For starters, hand gestures about a woman’s knockers is something guys do when describing their pick of the hour. It’s not a great selling technique with women.

When it comes to breasts, I can vouch that having a large rack is not everything its cracked up to be. For starters, I can’t tell you how many times, when talking with men, I need to draw them a map to my eyeballs. At least these guys are confident in their gazing. The guy in the ad Holly wrote about had no idea what to do with his eyes or hands when discussing the topic of bras with a woman.

Why should she trust him? Why would she purchase from the company he represents?


Trust is something we’re still learning how to do with our websites. We need to let our customers know we won’t sell or trade their personal information. As site visitors, we need to know when we’re being tracked by search engines and why. Our credit cards are sometimes ripped off no matter what kind of policies there are because hacking is alive and well. “Trustmarks” are viewed as signals that a site is a credible business.

How many of us actually click on them to see if they contain up to date, authentic information? How often do we stop to verify it? Does the Better Business Bureau really know the company?

Testimonials are another sore spot. Can they be verified? Are they real or fabricated? Are the personal stories on travel sites real or paid content used to help sell services?

Can you trust paid content? Do you prefer user generated, objective content?

I trust whatever feels natural and familiar. I believe the more we know our site visitors, the better we can become at understanding what is natural and familiar for them. What is it that they relate to and how can you put them at ease, based on what you know about their lives?

A nerdy guy in a lab coat asking me questions about bra sizes is not something that occurs in my everyday life experience. Confident women hired to help women customers with sizes and merchandise are activities that do happen in the real world.

In those instances, we give them permission to look because we need their help in determining the right size. I’m one of those women you hear about who is always in denial, trying to stuff the motherload into a smaller boat.

As for that ad Holly writes about, if it had used a topless hunky man to walk up to women and ask them questions about their breasts, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

I’m no dummy.

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