17 March 2023
By Roger Kennedy
Is Digital Trust a New Thing for Businesses?
Like any other relation, the company & customer relationship is based on the belief that promises made will be fulfilled to the letter. This can be earned in several phases, although doing so from the start has proven more effective than waiting for the product to be on the market.
That said, things can get a little tricky if the product relies on a platform which is vulnerable to attacks and hence, corruption. Despite being around for decades, products and services that employ cyber technology have been met with mixed feelings, mostly distrust. This begs the question as to the novelty of digital trust and whether businesses have been investing in earning it from consumers.
Infosec and the Evolution of Digital Trust
In the past decade, products were tangible elements whose authenticity could be verified right away, making it easier to establish trustful relationships with the client. Today, the digitized space has expanded markets to include non-tangible products which require user data to deliver intended results. This calls for more trust, and those companies that can provide it are the ultimate heroes. It should be noted that today before a customer makes a purchasing decision, there are several factors that they would consider including:
- The ethical reputation of the company
- The amount of data needed for eligibility to purchase
- Quality of product or service
- Presentation of the product
- Service delivery details
The above list contains factors that existed even before virtual products were a thing. Still, the first mentioned aspect has become pivotal when it comes to engaging consumers and keeping them interested in a product. With that in mind, there are two points to the ethical reputation factor, namely:
Banks are among the very first companies to implement this sort of trust, making it more of a new term than a new concept. Trustworthiness was mostly based on faith and a company’s track record back then. Additionally, back in the day, consumers were also responsible for proving their identity and intentions before they could be allowed access to virtual products. Currently, customers have more knowledge at their fingertips, and dealing with such a client base requires more than just a reputation. As a result, user authentication is now more effortless, leaving the bulk of the work on proof of motive to the business.
Data Protection and Privacy
When businesses first began introducing virtual elements to their frameworks, there was little transparency concerning where the collected data would be stored and what it would be used for. With time, it has become common knowledge that cybercriminals always try to steal user data for malicious purposes. Consumers are now conscious of this fact, and some have been cautiously treading when they have to share personal data with organizations.
On the other hand, based on an existing relationship with a company or some sort of added benefit, 72% of consumers have no objections to sharing data, citing complete confidence in the company. This is after discovering the company’s data privacy policies, which implies accountability for the shared information. Most consumers would simply consider seeking services from competing organizations if they were more transparent about their personal information policies. Data privacy and protection may be relatively new, but with threats of data breaches over the years, it goes hand-in-hand with the security bit to foster confidence in a product.
New Term but Old Concept
When a business introduces a new service or product to the market, it only makes sense that they earn its customers’ trust if they want a productive venture. This is true across all platforms, regardless of the type of business in question. Research shows that companies that embrace the idea of building their own trustworthiness and consumer confidence in their digital products are more likely to experience year-over-year growth.
Of course, it is safe to say that trust of the digitalized world has existed for as long as companies have been providing and selling digital products. Moreover, the concept of trust is necessary for any business with objectives that require customer cooperation. In short, even though the term was coined later in the process, digital trust has been around longer than most of us could imagine.