Honesty and transparency key to consumer trust

Australian consumers are demanding honesty and transparency before trusting businesses with purchases, finds new research.

According to the research by global review platform Trustpilot, half of the Australian respondents say they now consider a business’ stance on ethical issues (social, political and environmental) before they go to checkout. 95% of respondents say a business’ honesty and transparency is a deciding factor in their purchasing decisions.

About the research

The latest study, commissioned for Trustpilot’s ‘Brands that take a stand’ report, interviewed 600 marketers across the UK, US, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Sweden to compare and contrast findings against Trustpilot’s ‘Brand integrity: the new frontier for marketing’ study, which surveyed 7000 consumers from the same eight territories about their attitudes to taking an ethical stance and being honest in brand marketing campaigns from September 2021.

More insights

While taking a stance and supporting ethical issues has perceived commercial value, says Trustpilot, ensuring businesses are honest and transparent about a position on issues is what adds value to consumers.

When asked how respondents verify a business’ ethics and values, social media (46%), friends and family (45%), and reviews websites (43%) were the joint top three sources consumers said they go to.

In response to this, three quarters of the Australian marketers surveyed agree that demonstrating support for ethical issues is important. 73% say that doing so can win new customers.

While marketers agree on the value for a business in taking a stance on ethical issues, Trustpilot says the research did warn brands to ensure they practise what they preach.

“Australian businesses have a great opportunity to start promoting and talking about their ethical stance, which not only meets consumer expectations, but it also fulfils a wider strategic marketing stance,” says Trustpilot APAC Regional Director Cameron Buckley.

“While we are seeing some great local examples of Australian brands adopting this approach, there is still a gap in what consumers expect from brands. The brands that are willing to invest in explaining what they do, or don’t stand for, will be the ones that will stand out and ultimately win over consumers.”

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