This post is sponsored by Oddit
Today is the day. After months of hard work, you’re about to release your latest product.
Excitedly, you announce the launch on Twitter.
Now it’s time to wait for the sales to roll in.
But, there’s a problem.
A few days after launching you’re not even close to the numbers you’d projected.
Feeling nervous, you decide to launch on ProductHunt and run a flash sale. You spend a week preparing the campaign but it’s a total bust. Panic sets in 😬
More traffic will help, you think. You dump money into paid ads hoping they’ll finally create the momentum you need.
You spend $5000 on ads with only a handful of sales before begrudgingly turning them off.
After a few weeks, you’re feeling low.
You call a friend for advice. You explain your situation and then they ask, “Is it an awareness problem? Or is your product page not converting?”
Suddenly you realize that you assumed getting more traffic was the solution without really investigating why your offer wasn’t converting.
Why were you so quick to act without first diagnosing the problem?
In today’s edition of Why We Buy, we’re taking a look at Action Bias – why we prefer doing something to nothing.
Let’s get into it…
Get a free teardown of your website’s UX!
Oddit is offering a free UX teardown to every reader of Why We Buy.
Okay… but what does an Oddit teardown look like?
Check out how Oddit helped this brand take its site to the next level:
How an Oddit teardown drove sales:
- Give users access to shop products, not access to more shipping info.
- Remove unnecessary whitespace/padding—every pixel counts on mobile
- There’s no reason the sale should be the only thing shown—bring the site to life with an image of your products + customers.
- Even if you’re a well-known brand, remind users what makes you great! New customers discover you daily.
- Utilize a descriptive + full-width action button
The Psychology of Action Bias 🧠
Patt and Zeckhauser discovered the human love for action in 2000.
Their research showed that people love to get sh*t done.
Specifically, they found 3 rational reasons for seeking action:
- The only way to create value in our lives is by taking action.
- We have more incentive to take action when we’re acting as agents for others (exPoliticians will create bills, even though they know it will get denied, just to prove they’ve been doing something).
- Taking action comes with new learnings and new outcomes.
In business, Acton Bias can be extremely positive. It’s great to have a team (and be a marketer and founder) that’s always getting things done.
When faced with a problem, our bias for action can drive us to try the first thing that comes to mind rather than slowing down to assess the situation.
Inside Your Buyer’s Mind 🧐
Buyers are excited to take action.
The spike of dopamine that comes from doing something compels them to do more.
Products strategically placed right after someone has already taken action can lead to higher conversions.
(Ahem, upsells! The majority of salespeople and cross-sellers that Hubspot surveyed said upsells drive 30% of revenue 👀)
The same applies to products placed directly after someone experiences a problem.
Action Bias drives buyers to choose a solution quickly.
And that sounds like a dream scenario to most marketers and founders.
How To Apply This 🤑
Alright, so how can we apply this right now to sell more?
Give buyers a quick, fun action to take after purchase
Create a moment of delight by leaning into your buyer’s desire to take immediate action after hitting the buy button.
The key here is to make it a quick win that’s easy and gives them a dopamine hit so they can feel great (and productive) about their purchase.
Amazon knows how to capitalize on its customers’ bias for action.
At the bottom of their post-purchase emails, Amazon adds a “Related to items you’ve viewed” section that gives buyers the opportunity to keep shopping.
Amazon frames buying another book as the obvious next action.
Use post-purchase surveys to get immediate feedback
Buyers who just made a purchase are in action mode.
Directing them to your post-purchase survey immediately frames it as the obvious next action to take and creates an opportunity for instant gratification.
REI asks for feedback in their post-purchase confirmation email.
A request like this has a much higher chance of getting met right after purchase than it does two days later when the buyer’s enthusiasm about their purchase has worn off.
Get an outside perspective before making big changes
It’s a little too easy to fall into the trap of thinking we know everything. Before you decide to make big changes to your products, brand, or marketing strategy, make sure that you’re doing it from the right place.
What proof do you have that the action you’re about to take is productive and not just your mind wanting to take any form of action because it feels nice?
Enlist a friend, ask your audience, or hire professionals like Oddit’s team, which specializes in UX teardowns that strengthen your brand and increase conversions.
The Short of It 💥
Action Bias is like the hungry, hungry caterpillar.
It just keeps wanting one more bite. And it’s willing to sacrifice the best decision for the fastest route to the next dopamine hit.
While analysis paralysis is a bad thing, blinding taking action without properly assessing a situation can have the same result—but instead of doing nothing you’re just running in circles.
Use action bias to your team’s advantage but remember: sometimes you need to slow down to speed up.
Until next time, happy selling!
Wanna really get inside your buyer’s head?
There are a few ways I can help:
- Get explosive clarity about what works with buyers by learning how to conduct 1:1 Clarity Calls (3200+ happy students)
- Learn how to mine online reviews from real buyers to generate ideas and copy that converts (500+ happy students)
- Book a 1:1 strategy call with Katelyn and get the answers you need to get unstuck and move forward with confidence
- Apply to sponsor an upcoming issue of Why We Buy (next opening in March)