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Using FOMO to improve Conversion

Ever been in a conversation with someone at a cocktail party who constantly scans the room to see who else is there-rather than focusing their attention on your interaction? No? (Oh, so it’s just me? Yeah-right.) Either way, that person was experiencing fear of missing out (FOMO). By and large, most people want to believe the things they do and acquire are the absolute best they can be. As a result, they’re constantly on the lookout for something better. You can benefit from this in ecommerce by using FOMO to improve conversion rates.

Instill Urgency

Place countdown tickers on your site to display how many examples of an item have been purchased and how many remain. This will make anyone on the fence convert before the opportunity vanishes. Car salespeople use this method all the time; “I’m getting calls from all over the state about this car, it’s not going to be here long. I don’t want to see you get disappointed if you return and someone else has purchased it. They only made a few in this color combination with these features, so it’s going to be really hard to find another one like it..” If the customer was even remotely interested, they just became more so.

Introduce Scarcity

An item becomes more desirable when people think supply is limited. This strategy triggers the exclusivity factor, in addition to fear of missing out. Getting something few others can have makes people feel special. Conversely, seeing others get something they can’t have makes them feel inferior. Positing scarcity is a strong tool for both of those reasons. “This offer is only available to the first 50 customers!” Limited supplies available, first come-first served.” “Only a select clientele is being offered the opportunity to participate in this program-once it’s gone, there will be no more.” As an example of this, ebooks online stores can run promotions offering a limited number of copies of a noted author’s newly discovered lost work.

Feature Others Who Have Taken Similar Action

“Look how happy those people are; I want to be happy too. Why can’t I be happy like that?” Witnessing the satisfaction of others who were smart enough to make the purchase makes some people feel they’re missing something if they don’t buy in too. Here, it’s very important to have done your research to learn the attributes of your core customer. That way, you can feature people who look like the people you’re trying to reach. When shoppers see peers enjoying something they don’t have, they want it even more.

Give Them Just Enough

Veteran stage performers know to leave audiences wanting more. Once something is overexposed it becomes common-and nobody wants common. Similarly, when you keep copy concise, you give the shopper just enough information to be interested, but not enough to evaporate the excitement. The longer your product descriptions, the more opportunities you give a potential buyer to decide against the purchase. Hit them with an easy to digest product description accompanied by compelling imagery and a strong call to action.

Using FOMO to improve conversion is simply a matter of making an exclusive offer for a limited time on an item thought to be in short supply. Feature people whose lives seem better because made the purchase, while keeping the information you provide direct and to the point. Sales will increase. Now, with all of that said, you must do so honestly. If you say an item is in limited supply and customers see millions of them someplace else, your credibility just got shot out of the sky.

Now, let’s see, who else is at this party?