Your value proposition is probably one of the most important pieces in the conversion puzzle.
If you don’t believe me, think about it this way…
Online shoppers have literally thousands of websites they can choose from when shopping online. It can become difficult for them to decide where to make a purchase. They’re often looking for that definitive reason why they should choose you over the competition.
If you still don’t believe me, I had such an experience on a call with a prospective client just yesterday.
He’s in the market for conversion optimization services to improve the conversion rate on his website. To him, and many others, investing in CRO can feel like a risk. Conversion optimization can be on the pricier side, but for very good reason. The value is that we’re working to raise the conversion rate, customer acquisition, and revenue for websites. In many cases this results in a huge return on investment.
The particular client I spoke with yesterday was trying to reduce the risk and anxiety that he felt in choosing the right CRO agency. He didn’t want to invest his money in making the wrong choice. So he asked me several times, “Why should I choose you?”
In other words, he was seeking to find out my value proposition, i.e., what makes me unique and why he should do business with me.
To be honest, I don’t have a riveting value proposition in which I’m confident that my competitors can’t duplicate. Our recommendations are based on research, usability studies, and split tests rather than our gut feeling. But many of our competitors can say the same.
We also offer a free consultation where we give those who sign up a few recommendations for free after we review their website. But some of our competitors offer that as well.
He asked for a guarantee that I could produce a certain percentage in conversion lift. But I can’t. There are too many variables involved such as where the traffic is coming from, the ads displayed that brings in the traffic, the market for the particular product or service, etc.
I did offer that he could pay the initial 50% installment and if we were unable to provide a conversion lift, we’d waive the remaining 50% payment. I also directed him to my LinkedIn profile where he could view recommendations and read articles that I’ve written for a few high profile publications.
But it left me wondering, how can I improve our value proposition? By doing so, I’ll increase the chances of closing deals like this during our phone conversation rather than waiting to hear which agency he has decided to choose.
So you see, this is why it’s vital that you create a value proposition that sets you apart from your competitors. A couple of things happen when you do.
When you offer a strong value proposition up front, it helps your visitors to commit to engaging further with your website, and it can stop them dead in their tracks and compel them to decide to choose you over your competition.
How Important Is a Strong Value Proposition?
Having a strong value proposition is so important that MarketingExperiments created this formula to show it’s importance in the conversion process.
In this formula, C represents conversions, M represents how visitor motivation matches the offer, V represents the clarity level of your value proposition, I represents the incentives that reduce friction, F represents friction in the buying process, and A represents anxiety in the buying process.
As you can see in this formula, motivation appears as the most important factor in the conversion sequence, but motivation can be influenced by many factors. Therefore, it’s mostly out of your control.
Value proposition, on the other hand, is the second most important factor and is something you can control. That’s why you need to pay extra special attention to your value proposition. So how do you create a winning one?
Some Really Good Value Proposition Examples
There are several split testing software solutions out there, but Unbounce makes it perfectly clear with their easy to use drag and drop platform that you will not need to pay an IT team to set up your split tests.
This emphasizes the real value of Unbounce. It’s not just about getting good-looking conversion-boosting landing pages. It’s about getting good-looking conversion-boosting landing pages without needing to bother your IT team.
How to Define Your Unique Value Proposition
So how do you formulate a strong value proposition that will help your visitors choose you over your competition?
Well, there are several things to consider.
First, make a list of everything that potentially makes you and your offering different from that of your competitors.
Right everything down. Go ahead and do that now. Even if it’s something that you may not have thought of as different, write it down. You’d be surprised at the hidden gems you may uncover.
As an example, I worked with a client who offers insurance agency management software. The creator of the software was an agent who couldn’t find a software solution that provided everything he needed. So he went and created his own software that would satisfy all of his needs.
However, this fact wasn’t clearly stated throughout his website.
I mean what better value proposition than to offer insurance agency management software that was actually created by an actual insurance agent to fill all of the needs of someone working within this specific industry? That’s a powerful value proposition that needs to be emphasized across all sales materials.
To help narrow down your unique value proposition, ask yourself these questions:
- How exactly are you different from your competition?
- How easy would it be for your competition to duplicate this difference?
- Which of these unique value propositions would be most valuable to your particular customer base?
- Which of these unique value propositions would be most easily understood by your customer base, and can they understand it in 5 seconds or less?
Once you’ve made a list and asked yourself these questions, it will help you better formulate a unique value proposition.
Here are a few more things to consider in regards to your value proposition:
- Make sure that it’s placed prominently on your website. Visitors have to be able to see it order to be able to absorb it.
- You’re unique value proposition isn’t your slogan. McDonald’s “I’m lovin’ it” isn’t a value proposition. It doesn’t tell us a thing about what McDonald’s has to offer that’s better than the competition. Actually, Burger King’s “Have ti your way” does a better job of defining a value proposition because Burger King used to let you choose specifics of your order. Regardless, a value proposition is different from a tagline or slogan.
That doesn’t mean your slogan can’t include your unique value proposition. In fact, you really should try to incorporate it into your slogan so that it’s immediately visible and immediately absorbed.
Disney does a fantastic job of incorporating it’s value proposition right into it’s slogan with “The happiest place on earth.” Where do parents want to take their kids? To the happiest place on earth, of course.
Also consider adding some concrete statistics to back up your value proposition.
And if you can, MarketingExperiments suggests that you sum up your value proposition in 10 words or less.
As I confessed earlier, creating a really strong value proposition can be challenging. I myself have yet to unravel the single factor that makes my business more valuable than competitors.
But as you’ve read, it’s the key to helping you stop your visitors in their tracks and capture conversions.
Without a unique value proposition, you’re just one of many in a sea of websites. If you don’t immediately convey something that sets you apart, you’re missing out on a vital opportunity.
With that said, take the time to do the work it takes to find what sets you apart and ask yourself the questions listed above. Taking even just an hour to answer the questions, list what makes your business unique, and then writing out different value propositions to consider can have a big impact on conversions and sales. And once you come up with new value proposition options, remember to A/B test them with your website visitors to see which increases sales the most.
With a clearly defined unique value proposition, you increase your chances of lifting your conversion rate, increasing customer acquisition, and generating more revenue. The return you get on an improved value proposition is worth the handful of hours you need to invest to come up with a new value proposition and to test to see how well it works.
To learn even more about how to create a great value proposition, check out this helpful value proposition infographic created by Neil Patel.
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.