Bypassing Your Prospects’ Hard-Wired Conversion Obstacles, Pt. 1
In his 2003 book Resistance and Persuasion, Dr. Eric Knowles explores the psychological reasons people to say “no.” Understanding why your website’s visitors tell you “no thanks” can go a long way in helping you change more of their responses to “yes please.”
Dr. Knowles talked about 3 main root causes for the natural resistance to the sales process: skepticism/distrust, inertia and reactance. Today, we’ll analyze skepticism in more detail to see how you can neutralize it and increase your site’s conversion rate and profitability.
Skepticism – Resistance to your offer
People are trained from a young age to think that “if it’s too good to be true, it probably isn’t.” Nowhere is this more applicable than in business and marketing.
Does the copy on your website make hard-to-believe claims? Maybe you have to make bold statements because your product or service is just that good. Why should you be penalized for having an incredibly great selling proposition?
You overcome skepticism with evidence. Can you back up the claims you make with proof? Do you have testimonials of satisfied customers whose lives you’ve changed? Can you give statistics from authoritative sources that give credence to your statements? Can you demonstrate that you’re telling the truth with pictures or video?
Don’t hold back on the proof! The more evidence you can show that your claims are 100% legitimate, the less room you leave for skepticism.
Want to do even better? Offer a free trial or sample of your offering. It’s hard for people to argue with results they’ve experienced for themselves.
(Just a thought: if you can’t confidently offer a free trial of your product or service because you’re nervous the customer won’t make the final purchase, maybe you need to improve it until you know that if they try it, they’ll buy it.)
A major reason people hesitate to pull the trigger on a purchase is the fear of feeling ripped-off or disappointed when they finally get what they ordered. You can effectively alleviate that fear by offering strong guarantees and/or service after the sale. When they know they can get their money back if things don’t go the way they hope, making the decision gets a lot easier.
Another mistake many businesses make is sounding just like everyone else in their field. If your website looks the same as your competitors, if your copy says the same things in the same “voice,” your potential customers are very likely to think of you as the knock-off of the sites they’ve already seen. When everyone looks the same, everyone is seen as a commodity. But worse than that, everyone sounds fake and insincere. Distrust is a conversion killer.
Use specific language to show readers how well you know them, how well you understand their needs and how experienced you are in delivering solutions for those needs. Speak directly to your audience in language that resonates with them.
Don’t try to talk to everyone. Generic language almost always misses the mark.
In Part 2 of this series, we’ll take a look at the other two causes for resistance as described by Dr. Knowles: inertia and reactance. Be on the look out!
Donnie Bryant is a direct response copywriter living near Chicago, IL, USA. He specializes in increasing conversion, sales and profits for businesses and entrepreneurs by injecting true persuasive salesmanship into their marketing messages. Visit his website at http://donnie-bryant.com