- Previously: http://nv8v.com/the-bare-minimum-needed-to-extract-revenue-from-your-website/ we talked about the Seven Dwarfs of effective websites.
- Then http://nv8v.com/get-found-by-a-sufficiently-large-number-of-people-with-a-reasonable-likelihood-of-being-interested-in-doing-business/ we looked at the first of these dwarfs, finding qualified visitors.
- http://nv8v.com/keep-the-visitor-for-more-than-one-second/ We discussed ways to keep them beyond a second
- http://nv8v.com/get-the-visitor-to-initiate-further-contact/ Get the customer to to make contact
- Qualify the visitor via BANT or similar rules: http://nv8v.com/qualify-the-visitor-under-bant-or-similar-rules/
- Get agreement to pitch or add to cart: http://nv8v.com/get-agreement-to-a-pitch-or-a-cart-add/
This is what the whole process was about. Whether you’ve spent three months interviewing people and analysing a business and another month preparing a proposal, or the customer just scrolled through your catalogue and added a product to her shopping cart makes little difference, success depends on your customer having found something that engages her and solves a known and accepted need for her, she must have satisfied herself that this proposal or product is likely to do what it says in the blurb, she needs to trust you or your brand or both and she needs to have an immediate need or desire sufficient to make her just get it done. This is what we talked about when we discussed AIDA and yes of course there are many other variants, but they all do the same thing in slightly different ways.
A great pitch would attend to these needs one by one, probably knowing already that much work was previously done and only seeking confirmation of that as part of the presentation sequence.
A great Landing page will have answered these questions too only as a UX artist, you have no way of controlling the sequence in which she absorbs the information and makes the decisions, but a good profiling/tagging system will go a long way towards telling you where the gaps might be or when the time has arrived to decide. Moving into a cart process, is in itself a strong indication, but it is not a guarantee, as the record shows us, that all the key bases have been covered.
You have to learn from experience with each product line, what process works more effectively over the long haul and balance the risk of distracting a user from the cart process against losing her because of insufficient information.
My personal favourite as a default starting point is not to distract the user, but get her email and ideally phone number early on so that I can then make contact and answer her concerns if she should abandon the cart.
Information preferences VAK
Separate entirely to the concerns about covering the key bases is the question of presenting the information in the preferred manner.
In conversation anyone can learn very quickly to spot some ones VAK preferences. Visual, Aural, Kinaesthetic (VAK) describes an individual’s preference for receiving information. Most of us have a strong preference, there are also balances such as 70/30 etc and sometimes it depends on the type of information. Visuals rarely fail when used with information that lends itself, but when it comes to emotional discussions, Aural sometimes is more convincing.
In the course of a consulting assignment it is very easy to pick up these preferences and pitch a presentation well, it is also sensible to include a mix of formats and increase your chances. When it comes to online it is trickier to collect this information and to use it, but is still well worth the effort.
In particular if you are hoping for long term relationships with your customers it is smart to create VAK versions of key assets and where known, use the right one, or alternatively provide optional approaches. This latter method is very useful when a user begins to visit your site, or read mails from a campaign, because simple analysis of her choices will give a strong indication about VAK preferences. Be warned though, never fall into the foolish trap of the AI bot and assume everyone can be put in a box. No, we are all capable of having differing needs on different days, so respect people’s individuality at all times and you will do better.
When beginning to research customer profiles it is usually wise to give serious consideration to decision making styles. There are many out there and it is your choice as to how you approach this subject, but it is a very valuable exercise. There is no escaping the fact that we all have our own style of making buying decisions and when denied the opportunity to do it our way, we will often simply walk away regardless how good the offer might actually be.
Some examples of well-known buying styles include:
Mr Decisive. He hardly lets you explain to him, he grabs his senior manager who knows better than argue and says, lets buy it. If you are in luck and he comes by, don’t complain just wrap it up. If you find a good way to target this segment, please share to with me.
Mr Perfect. He is a little more challenging, even to himself. The smallest thing has to be investigated to the nth degree often spending more on that than the actual product, but he must follow the process. Be prepared for a long haul, don’t rush him and have all your ducks lined up. When he finally reaches that point he’ll demand you sell it to him.
Ms Collaborator. She is lovely to work with but frustrating. Facts are of little interest, she has to hear it from friends and trusted acquaintances. Nothing she reads will influence her and she must discuss it with every stakeholder in the entire company. Making it easy for her to share information and providing any collaboration tools you can any social evidence such as case studies and reviews will go a long way, but be patient.
I could write you quite a list, but I’m sure you’ll have more fun researching this for yourself.
By the time you have even a rudimentary profiling project planned you will notice that each asset has potential to be in as many as 40 versions if you decide to target each combination with the best suited style and content, in fact it could get even bigger. That is why I hesitate to suggest where you should draw the line. The smart approach is to begin experimenting with users who strongly match a specific profile and stop when there seems to be little more to gain.
It is of course possible to create assets with interchangeable paragraphs and visual assets embedded if you find yourself bogged down in too much content. Our Mautic can do this with focused content items.
If you have read or even skimmed through the whole series, you will surely have noticed that the same themes occur more than once and that is not an error or an accident. You see, the whole thing is simply about gaining someone’s attention and maintaining it while you help them through their favourite buying process. If you do it well you will undoubtedly complete two or three times as many sales, but that can’t be achieved overnight.
It is impossible to stress too much the critical importance of providing high quality landing page and smooth easy to sue shopping carts or enquiry forms. Delays in the page displaying are bad news. Complex forms are a kiss of death. One field extra that you don’t really need could be costing you 30% or even 60% of your potential purchases or leads.
If you are serious about winning at this, get on top of UX and get on top of high performance landing pages.
Soon we’ll be writing about what you do now that you have that enquiry in the database.
If you would like some a free consultation to find out how we could help you achieve your goals or take some of the burden off your hands, please feel free to call Edward on 0844 8842310 email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop your email and well get in touch to organise a chat
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