Published on April 13th, 2015
Imagine your car just broke down on the highway. As much as this sucks, only one thing sucks more -- the thought of car shopping.
Pushy salesmen, wacky waving inflatable arm-flailing tube men, and even more inflated prices; the whole experience is just a bit too much for me.
Shopping for your service or product shouldn’t make someone shudder like the thought of heading to a car dealership does, and your pricing page plays a significant role in this.
The way you present your plans can drastically affect their overall performance so I’ve put together these seven sure-fire (and many scientifically backed) tips to punch up your pricing page conversions.
1. Use a Comparison Table
No matter what I’m shopping for, when presented with many options, I end up wishing that there was a better way to compare the pros and cons of each one.
When people first arrive on your pricing page, you want to make evaluating and decision making as easy as possible.
A simple way to do this is by laying out everything people need to know about each package or plan in a concise, easy to read comparison table.
Pros Who Got It Right: Geoloqi. The geo-locating platform aces the test with a clear, direct comparison table on its pricing page. Standing only five rows tall, the chart delivers all of the key information about its plans neatly above the fold.
It also allows for quick conversion by placing its CTAs at eye level when you first arrive. This way individuals who are ready to take action immediately will not have to go hunting for what they need in order to move forward.
Giving their plans those snazzy dinosaur names also give this one a few bonus points, but we’ll get into that later.
2. Emphasize What’s Included
AC-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive. EE-Lim-A-Nate the Negative.
No, I’m not just singing show tunes (though I have been known to belt out a song or two in the office.) The last thing you want to do when someone is considering your product or service as a solution is to draw attention to any shortcomings.
With this in mind, when displaying your different packages/plans side by side, highlight what each one includes and downplay features that are excluded.
This keeps the reader’s focus on the benefits they are receiving at each price point, rather giving them a reason to resist or think they’re getting the short end of the stick.
Pros Who Got It Right: Xero. Though lengthier than that of Geoloqi, Xero does a great job of laying out all of their product’s available features by listing them down the side of their pricing page.
As you move across and down the page, bright green check marks make it clear what features are included in each plan, while those that aren’t are subtly left blank.
The design’s vibrant and inviting approach directs the reader’s attention immediately to the value. What’s “missing” becomes an after-thought.
Xero also makes a smart move by summarizing what all of the plans include, ensuring users know that no matter which they choose, they’ll be receiving a useful tool.
3. Limit the Number of Plans
Options are great. Too many options are stressful. This is the psychological state of “Analysis Paralysis” in a nutshell.
When presented with too many choices during the decision making process, people tend over-think and freeze up. They become so overwhelmed that their ability to make a final decision becomes paralyzed and no action is taken.
When people arrive on your page, you want them to act, not stare like a deer in the headlights, unsure what to do, so don’t bog them down with too many packages (especially if the difference is only a matter of a few small features.)
4. Remove Your Free Plan (From the Page)
As the success of Slack and Spotify have shown us, offering a free plan is a great way to build awareness and advocacy for your brand. If you can make someone love or rely on what you have to offer, it is more likely that they’ll be willing to pay for it when prompted to do so. (In Psychology, they call this Loss Aversion.)
Despite these positives, however, many marketers don’t realize that the way you position your free plan can ultimately make or break the conversion rates on your paid alternatives.
Including your free plan alongside your paid versions on the pricing page opens the door for comparison and often gives the user more fodder to resist upgrading.
“Eh...I’m doing fine without those 5 additional features. Why do I need to pay?”
Thoughts and comments like these are more likely to enter people’s minds when they see all of the features and prices laid out in front of them, so treat your free plan as a separate entity.
Consider positioning your free plan as a time-sensitive, free trial to optimize on the emotional effects of loss aversion and scarcity.
5. Start With Your Highest Priced Plan
In Psychology, the concept of “Anchoring” states that people hold onto the first piece of information they receive and refer back to it in all of their decision making.
In other words, a first impression is a lasting one.
While you don’t want to be the unbearable car salesmen showing a customer the most luxurious model as soon as they step foot in the lot, you still want to introduce the most expensive plan first.
Doing this ensures that every plan following the initial one will be viewed more as a deal and in turn, more appealing.
Pros Who Got it Right: Litmus. For a business on a budget, Litmus can carry a fairly hefty price tag, but by leading with their highest $399/month option, all of the following plans appear significantly more affordable and budget friendly.
6. Tell Them What to Buy
With Tip 3 and Analysis Paralysis in mind, another way to avoid overwhelming your audience is by identifying your “most popular” or “recommended” plan.
For someone who may not have done their research or doesn’t know exactly what they want, this suggestion will make the decision making process significantly less stressful and present your brand as friendly and helpful.
Pros Who Got it Right: Grapple. The IMPACT client does an excellent job of making it clear which plan they recommend no matter how many users are selected. As you choose how many team members you’d like to sign up, the recommended plan is highlighted leaving no question about which plan the team would.
7. Give Your Plans Personality
Don’t be afraid to get creative with the names of your plans. Discussing sales and money is never easy so anything you can do to make the experience easier and more welcoming is a must.
Try personifying your plans with descriptive names so that people can identify with them. This way if people arrive on the page and are a bit lost, they’ll be comforted seeing a name that clearly describes their situation.
Pros Who Got it Right: MailChimp. The clever team over at MailChimp not only gives its plans name that a user can identify with, it alludes to their power using animal metaphors. (Forget are you a Taurus or a Capricorn? Are you a Lamb or an Elephant?)
This playful use of words and imagery not only makes it easier to choose a plan, it makes the page more engaging and interesting to look at.
As you begin planning or updating your pricing page, remember to keep to your buyer persona in mind. Andy Crestodina once said, “empathy is the greatest marketing skill” you can have, so put yourself in your personas shoes and ask yourself, “what would make the shopping experience easier and more enjoyable for me?”
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