Have you ever wanted to book a holiday online and found there are, ‘only two seats left,’ on the plane and ‘last room at this price’. Not only that, but there have been ten people booking today and 20 are viewing the same web page right now?
The messages are designed to make you feel anxious about delaying your booking, and they work.
Whether we are aware of it or not we all have shortcuts in our head that help us make decisions. A behavioural scientist would call them cognitive biases. They help us make choices and retailers often use these unconscious triggers rather blatantly, and sometimes unscrupulously, to encourage us to buy.
Google researchers have recently identified six that apply to most of us. They showed how fictional products supercharged with these underlying benefits significantly outperformed brand leaders. Based on their findings, this is what you need to do to supercharge your sales:
1. Product Descriptions.
Keep them short and specific. Long descriptions make the purchase decision more complicated. If you need to provide additional information, make it available, but keep it separate. Do yours need tightening up?
2. Delivery Times.
The shorter the better. There is a reason that Amazon relentlessly promote next day delivery, the longer customers have to wait the less interested they are in buying. Is it worth keeping more stock?
3. Recommendation & Reviews.
Customer endorsements and feedback can be very powerful. Do you use Trustpilot, Feefo, or something similar?
Garner enough reviews and you will even find the ratings appearing as part of you search results, increasing your click-through rates. If your existing customers trust you, then let potential new customers know.
As stock, or availability, of a product decreases, the more desirable it becomes.
But avoid sharp practice. Some retailers have been known to use code to invent shortages and fabricate visitor numbers. It is very easy to find if you know how and you don’t want to be all over Twitter for the wrong reasons.
5. Recognised Authority
We are more easily swayed by an expert, or trusted source. Do you have authoritative endorsements, or can you get them? Or, perhaps your track record gives you that authority. If so, are you making enough use of it?
6. Free Gifts.
A free gift with a purchase, even if unrelated, can be a powerful motivator. What can you add to secure that sale?
Google Have A Point
When your builder tells you that they are busy, but might be able to squeeze another job into their schedule, they know what they are doing and they know it works. So do online travel companies.
Recognising how we have been manipulated by some of the above, we are increasingly becoming aware that what retailers say to get us to buy isn’t always true.
However, you don’t have to lie to apply some of this learning to your sales. The more you understand how these biases affect buying behaviours, the more you should be able to sell.
If you would like help doing some of these things, like adding real time stock information to your product pages, then get in touch.