So you have a web site. No matter what it is all about, it was
built for use by people. The good news for you today is that
people, no matter how complicated they may all seem, run on a
common psychological framework. They use this framework to do
just about everything, including use and buy from your web site.
Let us look at seven standard psychological phenomena that work
beautifully when it comes to online sales. Learn and apply these
and your online success will definitely soar.
Give free stuff Eventually you must ask for the sale (yes, you
must clearly ask your client to buy, but only at the right
time). But until the point where all your prospects emotional
and logical requirements have been fulfilled, you must look like
a free information service or at least provide useful
information along the way even in your product information
sheets. Give people free and useful information and let that
lead subtly but persistently to the sale.
By the way, a good reason to offer something free and useful is
that it allows you to be a part of your prospects life. Once you
have entered their life, you will be more readily accepted and
can then work up to the sale.
Listening to authority We all know it - people listen
unquestioningly to authoritative figures. If you hold anyone in
high regard, you will usually listen to and do as they say. Like
your doctor or lawyer. These people can tell you to do what most
people can't and you will almost always do it without
This means that your site should have someone or some
organization of recognized authority in that field saying
something positive about your product or service. It doesn't
have to be famous people, just authority heads. For example, a
travel service can have a review by some magazines and a vitamin
store can have some comments from some doctors.
Conforming to groups Peoples' judgement is highly influenced and
dependent on the collective judgement of groups. What this means
is that you will often make judgements that you believe are
entirely your own but in reality they are based on what other
people are doing. For example, you may go out and decide to buy
something or take a trip somewhere but that decision is most
likely highly influenced by your observing or reading about or
hearing about other people doing the exact same thing. And you
will often avoid things that most other people avoid.
What this means is that you should have as many features within
your site as possible that allow users to contribute to, feel
and be influenced by group opinions. For example, you must have
testimonials. Depending on your site, other things you should
consider adding are voting, forums, statistics and surveys. All
these allow users to contribute to the group thought and be
influenced by it.
Needs satisfaction Whenever people buy something, they do it to
get some need fulfilled. Simple. Even if you go out to buy a
boomerang, the principle is the same. There is a need you wish
to fulfill, such as exercise, amusement, discovery, fun.
Examine your products and services and forget all the hype that
you enjoy about your product. Forget the way you love that
super-cool feature you built in. Just think on the needs level
and find out what needs a buyer wants to fulfill. Needs are not
features. Needs are things like saving time, spending time with
the family, knowing something, and achieving success. That is
what you will be selling all along. You only mention the
features as a side item to seal the decision logically, but the
decision to buy will be based on emotions, needs.
Small agreements lead to bigger ones If someone came up to you
and asked you for your agreement on some major issue, they are
more likely to get a no from you than if they came up to you and
led you on with a series of much smaller issues that you can
easily agree on, building up to the major issue. Getting people
to agree to a major issue is a lot easier if you first give them
related but smaller issues that they can automatically agree to.
One way to use this in your business is to provide a free trial.
It is easy to get someone to try something free. After that, it
is much easier to get them to upgrade to a retail version.
Another thing you could do is to ask questions spaced out within
your sales pitch and those questions are the type that have a
yes answer. They must be questions related to the product or
service. They must be they kind of questions that almost always
have a yes answer. That build up of several related but easy yes
answers make it much easier to get the final yes to buy.
Putting it all together Well, there you have it. Now go back to
your web site and re-examine everything about it. If you find
that it really is very far off from what we have talked about,
then you might want to re-build all of it. Whatever you do, make
sure that you fully grasp what we have talked about here and
apply it in full to your site. You cannot go about applying
these selectively. That will only work half the magic. For
example, a lot of webmasters are lazy or reluctant to offer free
content and tools. Well, you must because most of these tactics
depend on it. If you would like an example of how to apply this
knowledge, have a look at www.positionweaver.com. Without useful
free content that induces return visits, it is going to be very
hard to effectively apply these principles. Like we said in the
beginning, people run on a common psychological framework, rules
that you can live and succeed by.
About the author:
David Gikandi (email@example.com) is CEO at