Counterfeiting is not uncommon in China. Thus, a main concern for Chinese web shoppers is making sure that the products they see online are authentic. Some Chinese online marketplaces are assumed to contain fake products, and past negative experiences with these fakes — ink cartridges that don’t last or don’t quite print the correct color — cause consumers to be extra wary when shopping online.

This guardedness is exacerbated by the restrictive Chinese return policies. It’s rare that sellers will take back a product with “no questions asked.” Chinese consumers who are displeased with a purchase will often choose to absorb the cost and treat it as a lesson rather than attempt a troublesome return process.

参与我们的最新一轮的可用性螺栓ies conducted in China displayed a heightened awareness of fakes, and were on the lookout for markers of authenticity and trustworthiness while researching various products and services.

尤其是在制作B2B purchases(which tend to be more expensive and affect more people than B2C purchases), Chinese online shoppers were concerned with how credible the organization appeared. Nobody wants to be held responsible for buying something that doesn’t work! Driven by past experiences with fakes, our Chinese study participants tended to be highly skeptical when researching items online. When counterfeit products are commonplace, how can a company prove itself to be authentic and of high quality?

This article presents findings related to gauging credibility and establishing authenticity from our recent study in China focused on B2B purchases.


Design quality is always the first indicator of atrustworthy organization,无论文化和地区如何。第一印象很重要!访问者到达网站判断他们是否可以根据着陆页的外观信任网站:信息很好地组织了吗?设计是否使用高质量的图像和专业的配色方案?我们在中国的学习参与者对我们在许多国家的无数过去研究中看到的设计质量表现出同样的评估。

One thing that differed, though, was that, unlike Western users who tend to use a general search engine first, participants typically began their search for a product or service on an online marketplace such as Taobao or In the rare case of turning to a general search engine to search for a specific known brand, participants sought tofind the official website该品牌,往往包括短语“官方网站”在他们的搜索查询。流行的搜索引擎百度和奇虎360都在搜索结果页面上显示一个“官方网站”指标,而我们的研究中的用户就是靠这个来选择导航的。为了SEO purposes,我们建议在您的中文主页的元标题中包含此短语的纯文本(官网)。此外,确保你的公司名称在您的URL的域,因为这是另一个识别真正的官方网站的另一个区别。

SERP from Qihoo 360 showing Official Website visual indicator
Participants often included the phrase “official website” (“ 官网“)在他们的搜索查询中,并依赖于搜索引擎的官方网站指示器来确定哪个结果是正确的。第三个结果链接右侧的绿色指示器是QIHOO 360上的官方网站指标,将真实网站与另一个站点区分开了与第四个结果的类似URL。

让人们迈向官方网站只是第一步。一旦他们在那里,你仍然必须确保着陆页是清晰专业的 - 并不要忘记细节!A well designed website can be undermined by a single, poorly produced element.例如,我们研究中的一位参与者最初喜欢Azure主页,对一个宣传云服务销售和试用的横幅很感兴趣。他开始在那个细节页上看附带的视频,但当他觉得不太专业时就放弃了。“声音太懒了,不吸引人。背景噪音太大了。视频不专业。我认为他们应该做得更好。”Due to people’s消极偏见,this disappointing experience overpowered his initial positive perception of the site’s design. Unfortunately, negative views aren’t limited to only the offending element, but tend to extend to the organization as a whole: a phenomenon known as thehalo effect.

Detail page with video on Azure website
The deployment-guide video on this Azure cloud-service solution page was perceived as low-quality and left the user with a bad impression of the service. Details such as the amount of background noise and other production aspects can degrade how professional a video seems.

一旦幻想破灭,人们往往表现出确认偏见,并继续注意到其他因素,加强他们的负面观点。在Azure网站上,在他停止了不合格的视频后,这位参与者指出,推广60%的折扣服务在中国市场并不常见,而是推广销售的“西方风格”。在中国,促销活动通常说明你愿意支付的全价的百分比,而不是折扣的金额。“For Chinese market I think they should change this Western style [of 60% off] to 40%.

Azure homepage banner advertising 60% off
Once disappointed by a website, users often continue to find other problems to confirm their negative perception. On this banner, a user pointed out that promoting the percentage discount is the “Western way” and not what the Chinese market expects to see.



A known credibility factor for B2B organizations is在那个特定的地区展示存在.Not surprisingly, this finding once again held true in this study.


I want to see whether the physical store is far. If it is too far away I would order it online, but if it’s not, I would like to see it in real life. I am always worried that if the product ordered online isn’t the model we want, it would be inconvenient to return.

It could be difficult to communicate with those foreign brands, but if you have the local distributor to contact — especially authenticated by the brand’s official website — it is the best.


Aside from physical locations, study participants sought out other indicators of local expertise such as过去或现在客户的照片、案例研究或推荐信显示在网站上。在中国,很多人都避免第一个尝试新事物——最好等着看它是否对其他人有用。理想情况下,特色示例应针对该地区,但如果情况并非如此,当提供了有关类似市场过去工作的足够详细信息时,参与者会感到满意。为了实现这个目标,照片是至高无上的:参与者喜欢看到大量真实产品的照片,或者项目前后的照片。当公司标志出现在图片中的产品上时,信任度也会提高,正如一位参与者在研究井盖供应商时指出的:


Detail page containing many photos of product in use
Participants valued seeing photos of real work completed using an organization’s products or demonstrating the service. This long detail page (zoomed-out view, left), displayed many photos of the product as used in various projects. Details such as being able to see the company logo on the product pictured made the images seem authentic.

In China, it is common toprovide contact information for previous customers在网站上。参与者表示,他们会直接致电这些客户来询问他们的问题并确保其推荐的准确性。“我需要知道他们做了什么。我可以联系以前的客户并询问此供应商的详细信息。“如果无法提供客户联系信息,那么一定要包括更多详细介绍工作的照片或视频。这个more details you can provide, the more authentic the information appears. 至少,客户公司的商标展示可以展示过去的经验和寿命——取决于客户数量。


5 of our 8 participants sought out and engaged in an online chat with an organization while researching various products and services. Contacting customer service was seen as a standard part of the research process for business customers, and participants often requested a discount (because they would be purchasing in bulk for their company), asked about any hidden taxes or invoice fees, and — if they were feeling wary —inquired specifically whether the items were authentic.

在中国,通过在线聊天功能进行交流是一种常见的行为,参与者首选在线聊天致电电话号码.One participant explained that online chat allows her to prepare the questions she wants to ask, and both she and the customer-service agent have plenty of time to adjust their tone of language — a nicety not always available on the phone. This practice of preparing questions in advance was echoed by another participant, who preferred online chat because of the number of technical questions he would often need to ask and, presumably, remember answers to.

事实上,在线聊天的一大优势就是为用户提供聊天日志,这不仅可以帮助人们提到所提供的信息(作为一种形式而担任行动外部存储器), but, as several participants noted, can also serve as a record of the conversation if they needed to negotiate a price, or return the products in the future. Participants were also aware that the chat history forced organizations to provide carefully worded responses from customer service. For example, one participant chatting online on Taobao asked directly whether the replacement ink cartridges for sale were authentic, but the service staff tiptoed around the topic and dodged answering his question, so he commented: “They dare not promise the authenticity. They keep avoiding it.”Although the company was confident in guaranteeing that the ink cartridges contained enough ink, this evasion led him to the conclusion that the products must be counterfeit, and he wouldn’t purchase them from that seller.


Establishing trust with prospective purchasers and conveying credibility are critical in all countries, but they can be even more important for some markets, as shown by our research in China. Chinese shoppers tend to be highly skeptical and cautious when buying products and researching services online due to their heightened awareness of counterfeiters — more so than online shoppers in the US or Europe. While manycredibility strategiesare universal, somedetails differ by culture或者在某些文化中相对更重要。这就是我们始终建议进行的原因国际可用性研究to supplement what is already known about worldwide user behaviors. To get the wary Chinese audience to trust a website enough to commit to a purchase, special care must be taken to demonstrate knowledge of the local area, a history of past customers, and availability to answer questions via online chat.