Have you put some serious thought into how people perceive doing business with you while visiting your website? I mean, it really comes down to perception, doesn’t it? Not to mention, your website is the first impression people have of your company when you do business online.
For example, if you’re giving indicators throughout your site that you’re available to answer questions through live chat—your visitors will perceive that you care a lot about customer service.
If you don’t provide that information and make it easy for visitors to contact you—the perception is that it might be difficult to get help when questions come up.
That’s just one very basic example of how perceptions get shaped when visitors come to your site.
The good news is that there are many ways to pump up perceived value. Unfortunately, many businesses ignore these opportunities and focus solely on the functionality of their website. They feel that if forms, buttons, and downloads are all working then that’s enough to generate conversions.
But your goal should be to increase sales in every way possible.
If businesses would put more effort into the perceived value of filling out their forms, clicking their buttons, and downloading their free white papers—conversions would rise substantially.
So how do you boost the perceived value throughout your site? There are a myriad of techniques that web marketers are overlooking. Here are a few.
#1: Contact Pages
Contact pages are an often overlooked yet valuable conversion opportunity for your business. Most businesses focus on their homepage and conversion funnel, but sometimes only a small percentage of people fill out a contact form when they visit a contact page.
So how can you increased the perceived value of filling out your contact form?
For starters, many businesses think that providing a contact form is enough. But that does very little to get your visitors excited about doing business with you.
Think about it this way: Your contact page is an opportunity to get visitors to get in touch and to become a lead. It may not be part of your primary conversion funnel, but it’s a conversion nonetheless.
And other than an actual “Buy Now” button, it’s one of the most important elements on your website that you want visitors to engage with.
Here are a few ways to increase the perceived value of getting in touch with you.
First, be sure to add some preemptive copy regarding the value that you will provide when visitors get in touch. Mention your value proposition and add some social proof by adding a few testimonials. Consider also adding the logos of big name clients you’ve worked with.
These are all elements that are typically used throughout a website. Add them on your Contact page as well to keep your visitors from forgetting those references by the time they get to the page.
Next, provide a guaranteed response time so visitors will know when you will get back to them. The sooner, the better.
If you don’t tell visitors when you will get back to them, they may think it could be a week or more before they hear from you. In that case, they may reach out to several of your competitors as well to see who they will hear from first.
Tell them you’ll get back to them within 24 hours and they may just hold off from spending more time reaching out to your competition.
There are also studies that show the longer you wait to get in touch with prospects, the lower your chance of converting that lead.
I’m pretty sure you’ve seen the standard “Submit” buttons that many websites use for completing a form, sign up for a newsletter, or register for services.
Here’s a quick piece of advice: “Submit” copy for buttons rarely wins in split tests.
With that in mind, it’s important that you test button copy that will produce higher conversions than simply saying “Submit.”
Consider using copy that spells out the benefits of clicking the button and gets visitors excited. For instance, “Gain Access to Free Course” clearly tells visitors what they will get when they click versus “Submit” which simply refers to the action they’re taking.
Benefits have a way of intriguing interest and raising conversions.
For example, Joanna Wiebe of Copyhackers wrote about a test where a new headline and button copy combination increased the click-through rate on a page by 124%. The test used an attention-grabbing headline that increased conversions by 15% but never reached statistical significance. However, when combined with button copy that said “Show Me Outfits I’ll Love,” the conversion rate went up 124% compared with the same headline combined with a generic “Sign Up Now” button.
As you can see, button copy can have an impact on conversions and can help to explain the value of filling out a form or clicking a button, so be sure not to write it off as throw-away text.
Have you ever offered your visitors something for free and thought to yourself—“It’s free. Why wouldn’t they want it?”
Guess what? If you’re asking for your visitor’s email address in exchange for that free offer—it’s not free and you’d better provide enough value if you’re asking them to relinquish their email address. Otherwise, they might not hand it over.
Just because something is free, doesn’t mean it holds enough value to convince people to hand over their email address.
With that said, load your offers with information that clearly details the value of what they will get with your free offer (and even your paid offers for that matter). The higher the perceived value, the more likely people are to exchange their email address and their hard-earned money for what you’re advertising.
Most businesses think of low pricing as a smart value proposition to pull in sales from people who are looking for the lowest prices. But the problem with this approach is that it cuts into your margins and profits.
Pricing is also a very tricky thing. Did you know that raising prices can increase the perceived value of your product or service?
When customers consider one product over another, sometimes they’re looking for the best price, but other times they’ll assume that the product that costs more is worth more and is the better product simply because of its higher cost. This happens with watches, cars, clothes, toothpaste, and more.
This means that if you only attempt to compete on price, you may be lowering the perceived value of your product by making people think your competitors have a better offering. If customers are looking for the lowest price, you’ll win, but if they’re looking for higher quality, you’ll lose.
For example, if you offer web design services and raise your prices to $1500 when your competitors are charging $300, your visitors may feel that they will get what they pay for by going with a higher priced web design agency. Even if the other agency is as good as yours, some visitors will feel more comfortable doing business with you since they’ll perceive your business as offering a higher quality product.
The same might hold true if an online jewelry merchant raised the prices on their jewelry or if an all-inclusive vacation package was priced higher than a competitor’s lower priced package. Shoppers who are looking for higher quality will feel that they are getting more for their money.
Not only so, but there are examples where raising pricing lowered the conversion rate but in the end lifted the overall revenue of the site.
In this scenario, if you raise prices by 50%, your sales need to go down more than 50% before you’ll lose money. So raising price can not only increase the perceived value of your business compared to competitors, but it can also increase revenue and profit, even if your total conversion rate goes down.
Are you missing out on opportunities that lower the perceived value of doing business with you? If so, how will you use the techniques from this article to start increasing the perceived value on your website?
In the end, perception is everything. How visitors see the value of doing business with you will determine whether or not they will buy your products or service.
Consider how magicians dazzle their audience through the art of illusion and perception. If you’re not doing the same by dazzling your visitors, you’re missing a valuable opportunity.
Just providing your visitors with functionality isn’t enough, although don’t get me wrong because functionality is a big part of the conversion equation. However, the perceived value of your business will lift conversion rates even higher.
That’s why it’s smart to find a ways to raise the perceived value of doing business with your company at every possible opportunity.
Marie Dean is the Innovation Director at ConversionLifters and has worked in the field of conversion optimization for over 10 years. She helps clients lift their website conversion rates and revenue with in-depth audits, heat mapping, user tests, and split testing. Interested in free conversion optimization recommendations that pertain to your website? Sign up for a Free Conversion Lift Strategy Session at www.conversionlifters.com.