May 11, 2020

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It may sound a little bit cliché, but there are plenty of marketing kung fu moves that you should learn. Social Proof Tactics is one of them. Social Proof software use notification pop-ups to help you counter emotional barriers by displaying relevant information based on the context. You should consider adding them to your toolbox!

The Social Proof Tactics help you counter pretty much all the emotions that stop prospects from subscribing to your content, converting into buyers, and hitting the “Buy” button. In this post, we introduce you to the most common emotions and provide you with a solution for each one of them. 

Cool right? 

Smart marketers and website owners use all sorts of marketing tricks to improve their numbers, build an audience, and sell more. We are sure that you will learn interesting Social Proof Tactics in this post. 

If you do not know what Social Proof is, you may want to start by reading our post What is Social Proof first. Here is 3 Reasons Why you should use Social Proof

3 Types of Scenarios:

  1. you want to increase leads, boost sign-ups, trials, downloads, contacts, etc.
  2. you want to convert more visitors into subscribers and buyers
  3. you sell stuff on eCommerce platforms and wish to promote products, create urgency, increase trust, reduce mental barriers, and stop people from leaving without making a purchase. 

The way to use the Social Proof Tactics is to use tools called Social Proof Software. The most popular ones are ProveSource, Proof, FOMO, and Notifia. There are plenty of other software on the market, they are all affordable, and we can tell you this: Social Proof Tactics work!.

15 Social Proof Tactics

Social Proof has many tricks in its hat to ease the consumer journey and bring people to take action no matter what the prospect is feeling: 

  • Buyer Anxiety: counter anxiety by providing positive reinforcement with human-generated reviews and testimonials (e.g., showing the name, image, location, and testimonial of a past buyer)
  • Doubt: show how popular the product or service is by displaying the number of sales along with positive reviews (e.g., 4.5 stars average)
  • Hurting wallet: paying for something hurts our wallet, and everybody has experienced this, help the wallet feel better by providing free delivery or a low-cost freebie
  • BS detector: Is the brand or seller trustworthy? Is is legit? Display credentials and personalized testimonials that show people mentioning the credentials of the seller (e.g., attitude, diplomas, “as seen on“ or “trusted by” type of messages) or the brand (e.g., past history and achievements)
  • Trust issues: Is the security on this website safe? Display logos of online security companies and messages like “100% encrypted and safe, Safety provided by Security Company, Meets Visa and MasterCard standards.”

  • Risk aversion: Am I buying the right thing? Put testimonials and images of satisfied and happy people using and interacting with the product. This can also include User-Generated Content like reviews with pictures and videos. 
  • Decision Paralysis: add pressure to push fast decision like scarcity (only “2 left in stock”) and fear-of-missing out (discount only valid for 24 hours)
  • Friction: uncertainty creates barriers and internal conflicts, offer “free delivery” to push for faster decision-making and used a detailed FAQ that answers ALL questions and worries prospects may have
  • Frustration: frustration often comes with unclear instructions, inadequate sales flows, and slow loading webpages. Make sure that your UX flow is clear, that the UI is well and designed, and that the webpage loads fast. 
  • Negativity bias: make sure that you answer bad reviews with personalized answers that address the comments left by dissatisfied users. For me, when I see that a book as more than 5% 1 star reviews, generally speaking, the book, even if I decide to buy it, is terrible.

  • Lack of support: “I cannot handle it myself, I will need assistance” Some products and services require support, and you need to show that you are there to support your prospects after the sale has taken place. 
  • Lack of knowledge: Provide insights to people. If your product is technical, provide all tech specs and how-to before the purchase, if it is a service, make sure you list all the relevant details. 
  • Bad past experience: display proof that you have great support with the face of customer reps and satisfied clients; display “Money Back Guarantee” icons
  • Low motivation: I don’t need this… introduce an incentive (e.g., free ebook, free gadget, access to exclusive online closed community)
  • Interrupted flow and heavy-content sales pages: do not interrupt the purchase flow when the prospect is about to buy with pop-ups, contradicting information and offers or bright colored elements)

    If you believe we forgot any tactic or if you would like to share your experience using them, please let us know in the comments!

About the author 

Martin Couture

I help people just like you start, grow and future-proof their online business. After years of creating digital experiences for brands like Disney, Nike, Tiffany, Fendi, BMW, Mercedes... I decided to start blogging and making niche websites. Now, I want to help you achieve what I have achieved. I worked at the 2 biggest independent agencies in the world: Wieden+Kennedy and Serviceplan. Martin Couture is Content Marketing Consultant at the Art of Growth Marketing.

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