Written by Matt Warren
18th November 2015 • 14 min read
Jenny Leonard, Never North Labs
1. Find the right words. What most people don’t realize is that design is not what converts people to buy. Words are. Design just amplifies the feeling that words give. The biggest thing you can do to increase conversions is to make sure your copy connects with your buyers with the language they actually use.
The difference between ‘request a quote’ and ‘request pricing’ increased this site’s conversion rates by 161%. Their users were looking for the price, not a quote.
A great way to understand your buyers and the language they use is to interview them. Ask why they did or didn’t buy on your website. Did they say something memorable? Most of my best copy has come from stealing the words from my customers mouths.
2. Watch someone interact on your website. What may seem obvious to you, is not obvious to everyone else. When you watch someone navigate your website for the first time you can clearly see if they are getting hung up somewhere. You will see what parts of the page are confusing to them so you can make changes. A simple way to do this is to ask a friend to do a specific task on your website like find an item they would like to buy and go through the check out process. Then stand behind them and watch. Or you can use a free service by usertesting.com called Peek.
3. Make sure your CTA is a color that stands out. When I create brands I created what I call an “action color.” This action color is one color that stands out from the rest of the color palette. The only place it is allowed to be used on the website design is CTA’s (call-to-actions). Let’s say your CTA is red
and you have a red header, red titles, and a red CTA button. It’s just not going to stand out. However, if your header was blue, your titles dark grey, and your CTA red. That button is going to stand OUT!
4. Change your CTA text to be something original and descriptive to your business. In this example, Empire Flippers changed their CTA text from the default, “Join Us” to “Make Money Flipping Websites” and converted 33.10% increase in conversion rates.
5. Give your store some credibility and social proof. People want to know that they aren’t going to be taken by a fool or be a guinea pig. Show them some testimonials and social proof that your products are awesome. The more people can see that you are a legitimate business being used by others, the more comfortable they will be purchasing your products.
6. Ensure you have high quality images to show off your products. This study shows that the best way to sell physical goods is to get it in somebody’s hands. You can’t do that online so the best way to do that is to ignite their imagination. Action shots often work well for fashion items and any product using aesthetics as a big selling point..rather than the product on a white boring background. Invest in quality images.
David Batchelor, President / Co-Founder DialMyCalls
1. Your pricing page is going to be one of the most important pages on your website. This is where you want your customers to feel as comfortable as possible before making a purchase or signing up with your company. One of the best things you can do is emphasize a “100% Satisfaction Money Back Guarantee” as this will help ease the mind of a customer who is on the fence when purchasing.
2. Another thing that works really well is to put your company’s phone number somewhere on the pricing page. This will make your company feel much more reputable and gives the potential customer a sense of comfort knowing if they need something there is a phone number where they can speak to someone in person. Making your customer feel comfortable is what your primary goal should be when it comes to your pricing page.
Per Sjofors, Founder/CEO, Atenga
1. Price according to customers willingness to pay. Willingness to pay can be accurately measured in pricing research, and when prices are set to match that willingness to pay, sales and profit soars. But this only work for instances where there are few SKUs and retailers should demand from their suppliers that they set their MSRPs based on pricing research. When this is not an option, retailers need to experiment (at least with the top SKUs) and change prices up or down while closely monitoring the sales level. It is just as likely that sales will go up when prices increases as it may go down.
From this data (price and sales volume) it is possible to measure price elasticity for these SKUs and with that information set prices that provide the best combination of sales volume and profit margin. On-line retailers do this all the time, using something called Price Management Software. One of the leading providers of such software is UK based Stratinis Ltd. Amazon, for example, change prices several times a day, to measure price elasticity and continually optimize prices.
2. There is psychology behind pricing. This leads to several things:
a) Prices should be set “on the 9”, meaning that they should be 4.99, 9.99, 49.99 and so forth. This is because we, as humans, can not avoid comparing numbers in our minds. Empirical research made by a French team a few years ago (let me see if I can dig up the study) found that pricing “on the 9”
increased total consumer spend with around 20%. So it does not necessary mean that the product priced on the 9 sold more, but that consumer bough more products. This is because when we read a price, the first digit become an “anchor” and in our minds is much more important than the digits coming after. So, we truly believe that 4.99 is cheaper than 5.00.
b) The anchor effect also means that as we unconsciously compare prices when making our purchase decision. We compare the “expensive” with the “cheap”. This should be used in a method called “price imaging”. Price imaging means that every time a consumer are about to buy product X, they should also be exposed to a product Y that is much more expensive. Price imaging then makes product X appear more affordable than it really is. One example on how this was brilliantly executed was the introduction of the Apple watch. Every story I read said that they offered a watch at $17,000 (not “on the 9” as to appear more expensive) while the volume models where $349. I our minds, we compare the 17,000 and the 349 and the latter then looks really really affordable.
If they are selling apparel, it should be easy [for the retailer] to find more expensive items (and prices on those should be set at expensive as possible) and pair those with cheaper items where the retailer want volume sales. Sales of those expensive items will be small, but it will drive high(er) sales of
the less expensive items. Preferably both the expensive and the volume apparel should be in the same general category. I.e., both should be shirts, or dresses, or shoes.
If the retailers are in food, the same applies but many food items are similarish in price like pasta sauces, canned tomatoes, etc. In those cases, retailers could use items that are related, but not in the same category. For example, it would work to have, on the same shelf, and with the price
prominently displayed, bottles of expensive Chianti wine with the pasta sauces. Cooking oils are maybe easier as retailers can have small bottles of esoteric and premium oils that are expensive just side by side to generic and relatively low priced cooking oil.
c) Because of the psychology of pricing, there is something called price walls. Price walls are price points where small price changes makes a huge change in sales volume and revenue. Price walls can be found using pricing research that I mentioned earlier. If a retailer do the experiments I also mentioned, it is crucial to monitor sales volume for these items as if an item ends up on the wrong side of one of these walls, sales of that item will plunge and correction must be done quickly. To give you an example, one of our clients (a manufacturer who sold through retail) has its products just on the wrong side of the price walls. They had no growth. After adjusting the price to the right side of the price wall, the company started to grow at 5% per month.
d) Price is the most powerful marketing message of quality and benefit. Therefore, if what is sold is a quality product, the price must be “high”. I can’t remember how many companies we helped to double their price at the same time as the sales volume also doubled. But there is a risk here too. If the price
is set to promise a quality product, and if the product actually do not provide the quality that customers expect this will backfire and there will be a unhappy customer and tarnished brand.
e) For items that consumers buy frequently, there will be strong reference prices. This means that retail prices for those items cannot differ much from that reference price, or sales volume will plummet. But it also means the opposite – for items consumes buy infrequently, there are no reference prices. Consumers don’t know what these items “should” cost and retailers therefore can price those at just about any price and will see the same sales volume. But, with consideration of d) above – not above the expected quality of that product.
f) Luxury and exclusive products use price as the barrier that creates luxury. Yes, that $4,000 Prada handbag is manufactured with higher quality components and higher quality manufacturing methods, but, even so, this might increase the cost of the product to twice or three time that of a $40 handbag, but it is the high price that makes it exclusive and thus the higher price is the reasons the few people that can afford it, buys it.
3. The shopping experience matter – a lot. Considering how Starbucks (and I guess Costa in the UK) can get away with charging much higher prices for coffee compared with the average “greasy spoon cafe”. This is because they offer a better quality product, more and better choices, and because they whole shopping experience is “quality” vs “cheap”. This means that retailers must set their prices according to that shopping experience. If Starbucks suddenly change $0.99 for their coffee it would be a mismatch. Quality experience – quality product – cheap price. Likewise, if that “greasy spoon” charge $3.49 for a bland low quality cup of coffee – they will have a lot of unhappy and not returning customers. Cheap experience – cheap product – high quality price. So, prices must match the expectation the customers has based on the shopping experience.
Written by Matt Warren
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