In the digital realm, what sells and what doesn’t sell seldom differs from the consumers point of view. On the Internet – the best deal wins. Brand loyalty can be a far fetched idea if you are just starting online. The Internet allows people to shop competitors in a flash with plenty comparison apps and thousands of online stores to choose from.
In the end, the offer that makes the user feel like they got the better end of the deal gets the “add to cart and checkout”.
If you are looking for a slight edge or to get some insight on to how we make decisions online stay tuned for some monster content. Here you’ll find 2 psychological principles with practical examples you can implement to enhance the customer experience and connect with your users more effectively.
Principle 1: Anchoring
We tend to rely too heavily on one piece of information, usually the first one, when making a decision or estimating the value of uncertain objects. This initial “anchor” value is used as a mental reference point, which might influence the choice people will make.
As an example, you could anchor the most expensive package of your product to the user’s mind by listing it first. This order makes the subsequent plan seem like a bargain.
On the opposite end if there is not much of a price difference, try to anchor the lower price first. Therefore, the slightly more expensive, but significantly more valuable offer, looks like a steal. Both work well, determine which one works best for you by looking at the price structuring of your product or service offering.
Principle 2: Commitment & Consistency
We are driven to be consistent in all areas of life. When we make a promise, we feel obligated to fulfill it. When we make a decision, have an opinion, or act in a particular manner, we strive to make all future behaviors match the past actions and decisions. We tend to justify these commitments by seeking confirmation and providing reasons for supporting them.
- Home try-on programs – Many online eyeglass retailers let their potential customers receive multiple glasses to try on before buying.
- Social media contests – When someone makes a public commitment, it’s easier to get them to do stuff.
- Online auctions – Even before it begins, bidders imagine themselves in a winning situation. With their first bid, commitment and consistency kick in. Works extremely well with a competitive demographic.
- Pop-ups with Yes/No questions – Let’s face it: Pop-ups are not the most pleasant things on the internet, but they seem to work very well for some people. This is where a small agreement paves the way for subsequent, larger requests
- Wish lists – E-commerce sites like Amazon know that when you add something to your wish list, you will be more likely to buy it later because you have already acknowledged your desire to do so.
- Asking for sensitive information last – Because they already invested their time so far, the user will be more likely to complete the whole process (sunk cost fallacy). Ex. Step 1… Step 2…. Step 3… Step 4 etc.
- Cross-selling – Remember that smartphone you checked out online? The store may have recommended a screen protector or case to go along with your phone. That’s cross-selling
- Freemium and free trials – Another way to invoke the principles of commitment and consistency is by offering a free trial or a freemium model like Dropbox does.
- Commitment checkbox – Weirdly enough, a mortgage company increased its conversion rate by 11% with just adding a “commitment checkbox.”
- Network effect – When a greater number of users increases a product’s value, then we have a network effect. Skype, Instagram, LinkedIn, Airbnb, or Facebook get better with the more people who join the network.
- User-generated content – Each time a user feeds an application like Dropbox, Twitter, or Evernote with information, he stores value in the form of data. The bigger and more often these investments, the more likely it is that the user will come back again and again.
Credit to Digital Psychology for the research done on these principals.