Want More Conversions? Offer Less Options!Leslye Schumacher
Giving people too many options or asking them for too much information can quickly reduce your conversions. For example, a study found that by reducing the number of options on your website’s “contact us” form from 6 to 3, you can increase your conversion rate an average of 66%. Even changing something like the “submit” button can increase your conversions. “Submit” was found in another study to decrease conversions by 3%. What works better? “Click here,” “Go,” “Download,” and “Register” rated best. Another oddity is that having the first and last name on the same line rather than separated, increases conversions!
Why? Researchers believe it is because the part of our brain called the reptilian, or “old” brain drives your customers’ buying decisions. Too many choices frustrates the reptilian brain. The American culture in particular is very “reptilian” meaning we want instant gratification and have a bias for action. That means if you make it too cumbersome for us, we dump out.
The reptilian part of our brain remembers clear and simple choices the best. Neuromarketing (yes, that’s a thing now) research shows that webpages which offer too many choices of a particular item convert people at a lesser rate than those which offer fewer variations. The optimum is usually 3-4 options. Too many options and visitors don’t know where to focus on the page. Notice Go Daddy’s offer below – a choice of three levels.
The New York Times reported on a grocery store experiment that dramatically illustrates how fewer options nets higher conversions (sales). In one area of the store they set up 24 varieties of jams, in another area only 6 varieties of jams. The 24 jam display had 60% of shoppers stop and do a taste test, whereas the 6 jams display had only 30%. But only 3% of people bought (converted) from the 24 jams display and a whopping 30% bought from the 6 jams display!
Simplicity is one way to reach the decision making reptilian brain, another is creating a sense of urgency. Website conversion expert, Neil Patel says, “If you can create a stronger sense of urgency on your landing page or websites, then you can successfully spur people to do what you want them to do on your page (i.e., convert)…People think too hard, wait too long, or simply don’t respond to our calls-to-action. Raising the urgency level cuts through a lot of this delay to create a significant improvement to conversion rates.”