Steve Jobs is famous for many things but he’s also famous for saying
“And we’re gonna have this model for JUST $599.”
Notice the use of word “just”?
Steve deployed the same practice while advertising high-end, expensive products as well.
That’s how Jobs used basic consumer psychology to promote products and increase sales. You can also use consumer psychology to promote your business and to increase conversions.
And this is what I am going to talk about. Stick with me and you’ll learn about:
1 Know The Difference (Offline VS Online Consumer Psychology)
2 Using Psychological Factors To Motivate Consumers To Convert
2.1 21st Century Web Is Meant To Offer Convenience
2.2 Consumers Are Hungry For Information
2.3 Being Unique Is An Asset
2.4 Never Compromise On Cost And Time Efficiency
2.5 Security Is Reliability
2.6 Go Out Of Stock By Offering Trustworthy Brands
2.7 User Friendly Website Is The Solution
2.8 Consumers Are Won By Customer Support
2.9 There’s No Free Food, But There Are Additional Benefits
2.10 Things To Never Forget: Post-purchase Strategies
3 Tips To Influence Consumer Psychology For Conversion
3.1 Keep Your Home-page Clean With Fewer Products
3.2 Use Hover Ads For Promotions
3.3 Highlight Customer Testimonials
3.4 Advertise Using Quality Images
3.5 Use Facebook As A Selling Platform
3.6 Allow Consumers To Spread Word Using Twitter
3.7 Don’t Forget Instagram To Promote Your Products
3.8 Remember That Consumers Like To Watch Product Videos Or Product Tours
3.9 Offer Alternatives Shopping or Shipping Options
3.10 Offer Price-Protection Guarantee
4 Bonus: Use The Power Of Big Data To Understand Consumer Psychology
Table of Contents
Know The Difference (Offline VS Online Consumer Psychology)
You are already aware of the advantages one gets while shopping offline. The most significant among all can be highlighted in two words: “HUMAN TOUCH”
See how more than 60% people value human touch and gratification which they don’t find while surfing online.
But there is also a changing trend that has encouraged website visitors to convert.
Look at the statistics below:
Notice how consumer psychology works!
They are always switching between online and offline platforms. But no matter how they behave, their online spending account for more than $200 billion annually for USA alone:
And if you look at the comparison between male and female consumers spending online, you will see that male consumers have gained confidence in shopping online:
So, what are the psychological factors that drive consumers convert?
Is it a male, female thing or a matter of taste or comfort?
I say it is a mix of all such factors!!
There are psychological factors that you can use to motivate consumers to convert and there are techniques you can use to influence consumers as well.
And don’t worry about the order of content that follows. We are definitely going to make your consumers convert!
Let’s get started…
Using Psychological Factors To Motivate Consumers To Convert
If you ask me what you have to do to motivate consumers to convert, I’d suggest:
“Create reasons for them to trust your online business. This motivates them to convert”
But even before that, you must use SEO techniques to bring traffic to your website. I am assuming you already have implemented such techniques.
If not, you can check out these 9 Tested Strategies To Increase Your blog traffic by Daniel Louis
Now that you have traffic, I want you to use the following psychological factors to motivate your consumers to convert.
21st Century Web Is Meant To Offer Convenience
I don’t know how many times you have wished not to go for grocery shopping and to have groceries delivered at home.
And I know why?
It’s simply because of convenience.
You must remember, and I can’t stress more, that the whole purpose of having an online business is because consumers want convenience. And you are there to provide them what they want, aren’t you?
Tesco did the same…
They used consumer psychology!
Tesco provided an online experience while staying offline, and decided to offer consumers the convenience of browsing through displays of the same merchandise offered in its stores.
To make purchases, consumers simply scan QR (quick response) codes of the items they wish to purchase and then click the send button on a smartphone app. Tesco then delivers the merchandise to the consumers shortly after they get home.
Consumers loved the idea and started to convert.
The campaign resulted in 130 percent increase in online sales.
What does it mean?
That convenience is the king in consumer psychology, and leads to conversions.
Convenience also means that you have a neat website with least amount of complexity. I will talk about this later.
So, what do you think you should do now?
I say, share information about your products and services.
Consumers Are Hungry For Information
Make no mistakes by assuming that your consumer already knows it all, or isn’t interested in reading lots of words.
In truth, your prospects crave as much information as possible so they can make an informed purchase decision.
Recall the example of Tesco above.
The retailer not only provided convenience, but also offered necessary information at the touch of a finger.
The above statistics tell you the following:
The lesser research consumers do, the more unlikely they are to buy. But there is no way you can force your visitors to do research.
So, what can you do instead?
Offer sufficient information so that there is no need of further research about your products or services.
Make it conveniently accessible and clearly visible.
And never share lies…
Look how Made.com shares information about individual products leaving little room for further research:
Being Unique Is An Asset
One of my friends came to me and asked for guidance to increase conversions.
I spent a good amount of time sharing strategies and asked:
What product or services are you selling?
And he said that he had not decided yet…
That was painful, but made sense!
Some people like to gather information first and then implement.
If you are like my friend, shopify has 8 strategies for you to find your first product to sell.
Let me share a unique geeky product by ThinkGeek. The product is called “Useless Box”.When you turn it on, it closes and it turns itself off. It is one of ThinkGeek’s best selling products.
What if your products and services are not unique? Or what if you are a small business competing with top selling online brands / products?
Well, you can still find or create uniqueness!
Let me give you a quick example:
JixHost provides web hosting and domain registration services. They are not unique in any sense as there are thousands of web hosting giants available to choose from.
But it may surprise you that JixHost is hosting over 115,000 domains, which is big for a comparatively small company.
What’s unique about them?
Their uniqueness is the human touch they provide that many other “big” hosting companies don’t.
Notice how they convince consumers to feel comfortable by highlighting consumer’s knowledge, expectations, personality, etc.
You can also find and create uniqueness in your product or service. Just act smartly and you’ll be good!
Never Compromise On Cost And Time Efficiency
You crave for consumers to
- Stay on your website for a longer period of time
- Agree with the pricing plans
Which means you are aware that online consumer’s psychology revolves around time and cost.
Let’s learn from examples about time efficiency and cost:
Amazon knew that time is money. That’s why the company introduced Buy in 1-Click option.
Bypassing the shopping cart and making consumers to convert was a really neat strategy to implement.
The idea was so profitable that Apple licensed 1-Click technology in 2000.
Apple incorporated the frictionless 1-Click checkout technology into iTunes, iPhoto and the Apple App Store.
The statistics about Global Checkout Funnel and Completion Rates by Device are really shocking. Take them seriously!
Notice how consumers DO NOT convert if they have to go through tedious checkout processes? Smashing Magazine has some wonderful tips to improve your checkout process.You can also save your consumers’ time and increase conversion rates by using these 40 checkout page strategies
eBay has a neat example of how to motivate consumers to contest for the right cost. And many online businesses have used similar strategies to increase conversions.
You can do that as well.
But what if these are not practical solutions for you?
Don’t feel lost, my friend!
You can still use consumer psychology by offering deals and discounts to motivate conversions. That’s always a helpful trick to play.
Stay ahead with by offering affordable pricing and deals to win conversions. Remember that according to PSU, more than 50% of online consumers are motivated by lower prices and time factors.
Bonus: Deliver your products and services in time.
Security Is Reliability
I don’t buy from merchants without good reputation. But if I do, I double check the level of security offered by the online business.
Security is of utmost importance to everyone.
Will you ever trust a website that does not guarantee secure transactions?
I won’t do that!
You should remember that more than 60% consumers are afraid of security issues while shopping online.
I suggest that you use Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to satisfy your customers about security.
You can incorporate one of the following SSLs into your website:
RapidSSL issues most SSL certificates within minutes of enrollment, helping you develop and launch a secure site quickly. RapidSSL’s root certificate has 99+% browser recognition.
RapidSSL Certificate that secures a single domain costs $49/year, whereas RapidSSL Wildcard Certificate that secures unlimited domains costs $199/year.
Comodo is now the largest trust provider in the world.
You can get Comodo SSL at a starting price of $76.95. They claim that Comodo SSL Certificate is the quickest and most cost effective way for an online business to protect customer transactions.
Your site will enjoy the highest security levels and you’ll also receive additional tools that will win customer trust and increase sales conversions.
One more thing:You can put an additional layer of security by using services like PayPal.
Do you know why PayPal is a good choice?
Because it is one of the two most trusted online payment options and in the age of smartphones, where digital wallets are trending, PayPal is the king!
There are also other options that you may explore.
But I suggest you to check out these 5 simple tips that you can use to secure your website by Small Business Trends to make your site a secure place for visitors.
Go Out Of Stock By Offering Trustworthy Brands
It may be coming in bits and pieces to you, but remember that we are talking about consumer psychology!
There’s no single magical spell that you can use to make your consumers convert.
Using trustworthy brands is a solution in many cases. People love to shop for brands. And if you have the best out there, you are sold!
Nielsen Private Label Global Report has the following statistics about label brands:
But there’s also a trick to convert your product or service into a brand name.
Let’s have a look at a quick example:
Cars.com encouraged rating, reviews and sharing (versus no ratings, reviews and sharing) and it showed that pages that had ratings and reviews had a 16% higher rate of conversion and a 100% higher rate of traffic through to dealer’s sites.
I will talk more about testimonials and reviews later in this post.
I suggest that you spread awareness about your products or services among consumers. Once they develop positive feeling about your business, you will have loyal customers who not only convert but also bring new clients.
Now you know that even if the economy is good or bad, you can play with brand related consumer psychology to increase conversions.
User Friendly Website Is The Solution
No matter how much efforts you put in establishing your online business, all is lost if you don’t have a user friendly website.
That’s why every website is constantly updating its design apart from Google, which has the simplest and most user friendly home page.
I recommend these 10 tips for building a user-friendly website.
I also suggest that you go back to the first heading about convenience, if you are still wondering what a user friendly website will do!
Now pay extra attention to the following research outcome:
I must stress that you can’t ignore those at all…
e have a simple guide that helps you to kill bounce rate.
By definition, bounce rate is the rate of site guests who leave your landing page or your site, without moving forward.
And what if I told you that you are more likely to get conversions if your site is mobile-friendly as well.
That’s a 67% increase in conversions we are talking about!!
You should also check the best practice guide for building mobile-friendly sites.
Well, let’s move on and see more on how we can use consumer psychology to increase conversions.
For now, I’d simply say that you should be working really hard to provide the best user experience possible.
That’s how you get conversions!!
Consumers Are Won By Customer Support
According to SuperOffice, 24/7 support is most important when it comes to winning consumer loyalty:
Let me share my own experience:
I have always been a loyal HostGator customer for web hosting reseller services.
And whenever someone asks me for reliable web hosting resellers, HostGator is on the top of my list.
You know what the reason is?
It is because they have always provided me exceptional 24/7 customer support.
You can win consumer trust and conversions by doing the same.
Ask yourself how many times you have switched companies just because of poor customer services?
I bet you will remember a few immediately!
You may get surprised to know that billions of dollars are lost because of poor customer service:
Put all of your efforts to keep your consumers happy.
Remember that 30% of customers share positive reviews on social media. And 69% of consumers read positive reviews on social media as well.
I will show you how to use these stats to win conversions below.
There’s No Free Food, But There Are Additional Benefits
It’s a secret weapon we’re gonna discuss now:
You can offer additional benefits to your online customers in form of discounts, coupons, money-back-guarantees and deals.
These are powerful tools to increase conversions, but they must be used sensibly to make profits.
There are many ways you can offer additional benefits. I’ll share a two-in-one example here:
I’ll keep it brief…
MagifJack – a VoIP Phone Service:
What will you do if you have competition? Use the strategy implemented by MagicJack. Offer free trials to potential customers.But remember that less than 25% customers who enter your Free Trial actually become customers.
Can we do anything for them?
You can make money from the lost customers as well. Sell a month long free trial with annual subscription like Fido did:
You can also offer a discount after the free trial expires to keep those customers.
You can offer holiday sales just like MagicJack. It will help you increase conversions during the holiday season.
Look at how American shoppers spend online during holiday seasons and create a holiday offer for your customers as well:
Do you notice how Americans are spending more and more over holiday seasons? I am sure you can grab a big chunk of that 61+ billion dollars.
Things To Never Forget: Post-purchase Strategies
When I make an online purchase, I am always looking for order confirmation email and order tracking while in transit.
There are many other aspects of the post-purchase experience when shopping online:
Keep in mind all the above aspects to satisfy your customers after sales.
You will win consumer loyalty by doing so.
Another neat strategy to implement is a post-purchase email campaign as described below:
Look at how Peacock Alley includes product recommendations triggered by the customer’s purchase history. The email design is visually appealing by showcasing images of popular items they offer (along with a brief description) that are related to the customer’s last purchase:
Tips To Influence Consumer Psychology For Conversion
By influence, I mean to really convince customers to convert
Now is the time to influence consumer psychology!!
Keep Your Home-page Clean With Fewer Products
The main reason why eBay or AliBaba have dozens of products on their home-pages is because they don’t have their own products to sell.
But you can still notice that they highlight a few products on top.
KissMetrics has a well-written article about giving customers too many choices:
When it comes to home pages, there’s a lot to cram onto one page. It seems that everything the customer may ever want needs to be available on the first page they’ll see.
That’s not the way to design a home page.
Instead, the question needs to be asked about what can be left out. Good design is not when every possible feature is included; it’s when every possible feature is removed that can be.
Below are two examples that illustrate this point:
Where is the emphasis on this page? Is there anything in particular readers are supposed to look at? Is there any element that is more important and appropriately emphasized more?
Unfortunately for Yahoo, the answer is no. Search isn’t emphasized, Yahoo sites aren’t emphasized, and news isn’t emphasized. Everything is tacked on to one page with the result being too many options.
Google is the number one visited site on the internet, yet they’re still able to limit their home page to a single action: Would you like to search the internet?
How do they do it? How do they keep the home page of the number one site in the world limited to a text box and a search button?
Somehow they do, but the more important question is this: How much is this a factor in their success? Yes, they have the best search engine in the world, but they also make it stupid-easy to use. They don’t distract visitors with other options. Once you land on the site, you just have to decide one thing: What am I going to search for today?
I know the Google example is a little extreme…
Use Hover Ads For Promotions
Hover Ad is a very impressive technology that actually lets you use ads that behave like pop-ups but that aren’t pop-ups–so they don’t get blocked. They’re well worth testing on your site.
Ad hover and viewable impressions have the highest correlation with conversion, claims Adobe’s CMO.
It is also tested fact according to Entrepreneur that adding a hover ad to their site, sales increased by 162 percent!
These ads are effective because they put important information, such as your opt-in offer or a special limited-time promotion, right in front of your targeted visitors.
There are many ways to create hover ads. One such platforms is FloatingAdGenerator.
A much neater example from Digital Telepathy is:
Be careful! Don’t block your main content by placing large hover ads.
Highlight Customer Testimonials
There’s a big YES when it comes to reading online customer reviews to determine credibility of a local business:
Importance of online reviews in relation to other sources of information in the buying decision process can be seen by the high blue bars below:
When 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations (source: Search Engine Land), it become mandatory to add customer testimonials to a site.
Here is how to get credible customer testimonials for your site.
Advertise Using Quality Images
You must have noticed the quality of images on our blog at TruConversions:
One of the main reasons we focus on image quality is because visitors convert only if they find solid grounds to do so.
And good image quality is one such fundamental reason.
You can learn image optimization in Photoshop or hire a professional.
It will be worth your time if you know how to optimize images for SEO as well.
Use Facebook As A Selling Platform
We all know that Facebook is a global leader in account ownership and active usage.
So, why not use the power of social media tycoon to win consumer trust leading to conversion?
I will list down a few methods you can adopt to increase traffic and conversions using Facebook:
- You can start running Facebook ads that convert.
- A retail campaign on Facebook will definitely bring customers to your business.
- Facebook Video Ads are also a great way to promote your business online.
Allow Consumers To Spread Word Using Twitter
One thing that must be clear to you is that Twitter is a leader in online communication.
It has the power to influence people with 500 million tweets every day:
I was not surprised when I read that 42% people use Twitter to learn about products and services:
There is also data showing that companies that use Twitter get twice the amount of leads per month compared to the companies that don’t use Twitter:
Twitter also has some very useful tips on how to use Twitter for your business.
Do check them out!!
Don’t Forget Instagram To Promote Your Products
Instagram has seen tremendous growth since its birth. It has more than 200 million active users:
But what is it worth unless you use it to get loyal consumers?
You can win consumers by sharing pictures with catchy slogans on Instagram.
See how Starbucks does it:
Kate has shared 5 ways to use Instagram to promote eCommerce. You can also use Instagram to promote your brand and drive sales.
Use it to your benefit, my friend!
Remember That Consumers Like To Watch Product Videos Or Product Tours
There can be no better place to learn about product videos and tours than Apple!
Notice how Apple takes you through 4 simple steps of iPad Pro Product Tour to sell its most popular tablet device
The 1-2-3 of this product tour is:
- Tech Specs
Have a look at Kera’s list of top 50 product tour videos for more guidance.
You can also use this jquery plugin to create product tours with bootstrap popovers:
Offer Alternatives Shopping or Shipping Options
I have had so many bad experiences while shopping online. And most of them are related to the way information is shared…
One such example is when products are out of stock.
Imagine if you have selected numerous items to shop from a website and at the check-out stage you are told that some of those items are out of stock or unavailable to purchase.
What will you feel like?
I will get EXTREMELY angry and frustrated!!!
So, what are the alternatives?
- Don’t display out of stock items at all
- Offer to contact customers when the product is back in stock
- Share alternative buying options
You can also do what Walmart does:
Tell customers that shipping is not available and they can purchase or pick an item from a local store:
If you care more about out of stock items, you can see Graham’s list of how to handle out of stock items.
Offer Price-Protection Guarantee
Many customers don’t even know about price adjustment policies offered by retailers.
Old Navy has one and so does The Children’s Place!!
But what does it mean?
Price protection guarantee or price adjustment let’s your customers protect themselves from price drops.
If a customer buys a product and the price goes down afterwards within a considerable time, then you are supposed to refund this customer.
This is something that your customers hardly hear about but will appreciate it if you offer that.
Are you interested to learn more about price adjustment policies?
Have a look at price adjustment policies of some big brands here.
However, ensure that you include it especially when selling expensive items.
Bonus: Use The Power Of Big Data To Understand Consumer Psychology
Every time customers click on a digital ad, write a review, “like” a product, browse your website, contact your call center, place items in a cart, and make or walk away from a purchase, they are generating interaction data.
And along the way, companies like yours are collecting an unprecedented amount of customer data – both structured and unstructured.
This data is in form of web logs and mobile interaction data, digital advertising, social media and marketing automation data, product usage and contact center interactions, CRM and transaction data.
We give it a fancy name: BIG DATA!
All of it can be enriched with all types of publicly available data, such as cookies and demographic data, and then analyzed.
That’s Big Data Analysis…
It will help if you know whether your industry has been investing in Big Data or not:
I know it is a VERY difficult domain to work in. And you may need to hire a data scientist.
That’s it, pal!