How To Apply Online Psychology To Your Own Website

So, you have managed to get visitors on your website. But, your problem is not getting visitors – it’s retaining them. How do you do that? How do you lower your bounce rates?

Here are some tips that use online psychology in keeping your visitors.

Give Away Freebies

Everyone loves freebies. When we get something for free, we only see it as a positive thing and we feel like it has more value. Just think about it – you enter a website and they offer free samples of something that you don’t even need. But you take it, because it’s free and you never know when you are going to need it.

Many brands and websites have used this technique to increase their sales by a lot just by offering free samples.

If something is free, then that’s a benefit.

People also like to feel like they have earned the free stuff you have to offer. This effort or this act that they take makes them feel like they have received a reward – much like receiving a reward for completing a stage on a game. All it takes is to open that door and their reward is there.

Lead magnets are the best example here – you get to balance out sales and freebies. You don’t even have to be a marketing expert to make this happen, and with good results too.

You can give away basically anything – eBooks, checklists, toolkits, guides, courses, pdfs and so on. But, in exchange for an email. This is a simple action for them but it brings value to both parties.

For instance, you want to build your email list. Have a popup on your page which offers a gift in exchange for an email. The shorter the form the better in most cases. Just ask for an email or their first name and an email. Otherwise, they might think that it’s too much work for what you have to give. People don’t like to type – especially emails and names since they have to type them repeatedly online and especially not on mobile devices where entering your information can seem even more troublesome.

You can offer many freebies on your site – a different one for each task. One in exchange for an email, one to go along the first sale, one for sharing or something similar. Figure out what works for you and which freebies you want to give out.

Some popular psychology tricks include stating what the sample would normally cost. For instance “This course is valued at $500 but you can get it for free if you subscribe”. You can also offer content upgrades with each article. This is a good strategy, especially if you have a website dealing with several things at once. For instance, if you write about digital marketing and SEO and if someone came to your website for SEO, there is no point offering a free guide to creating magnetic posts on social media – they won’t be interested in that, at least not at the moment they reach your site for information. Instead, if you offer them an extended guide on your post that deals with the exact subject, only on a much deeper level – in this case, SEO – in exchange for an email, you will get a new lead.

You can make this simpler by including one freebie per category or topic on your site, rather than doing it for each new article.

Improve Your Website Design

Web design might not seem like such an important thing in gathering and retaining visitors but it has a huge impact on your numbers. To illustrate – where would you rather spend time: on an old-fashioned, green letters on black screen blog, or on a modern, minimalistic one?

We all know that answer is the latter, unless you are really nostalgic.

So, it goes without saying that your website should follow trends – and common sense – in design. But, it goes much deeper than that.

Color psychology, for one, is very important. The first moment we enter someone’s site for the first time, we can already tell the general theme of it, if not the industry itself. For instance, we generally associate blue with stability and trust, so websites in blue are usually financial websites or from similar industry – or industries like steel construction. When we enter a website that has light pink visual cues, we usually presume that it’s a blog for female audiences. Generally, cooler colors are stable, peaceful and inviting while warm colors are friendly and fun. However, every color is a double-edged sword. Cool colors can come off as cold if done inappropriately and warm colors can beam anxiety.

So, approach color psychology with care.

When it comes to website design, it’s best to stick to a theme, a color palette. If you are looking for bold and bombastic effect, you can use contrasting colors. If you are looking for a calming effect, choose black and white or some lighter colors. If you want to be warm and welcoming, colors of autumn would be a good choice. For poise and elegance, you can use purple.

However, be careful of how and where you use them.

Never have a background in dark colors that would require the letters to be white or yellow or anything similar. While some websites still do that, it’s a passing trend and it puts a lot more strain on the eyes than a regular black-on-white would. If you really hate white backgrounds, go for light variations of other colors – light orange, pink, purple, grey – choose neutral colors like beige or similar.

Letters should be readable against that background.

Apply color accents on various other elements but never dampen the readability of your text.

Next, take a look at fonts.

Your font has a similar effect on your readers as colors. For example, when you see a serif font, you automatically think that it’s formal, traditional, stable. When you see a sans serif, you think of something modern, informal and friendly.

There are a lot of fonts to choose from and you should choose yours very carefully. Make it match your brand and the general feel you want to convey. You can use script fonts as well, but only in titles and possibly subtitles. Use your common sense with this one as well – those titles need to be readable, and if they are not, the script font has to go.

Finally, you also have to find the right match between your body font and your title font. While they could be the same, it’s also good to add some contrast between the two. Use Google Fonts for this, this tool can help you find the best font for you and the best match for it too.

Improve Your Content

Content is the next thing people will be paying attention to once they land on your site. The first thing they will notice about it is formatting. Humans respond incredibly well to visual cues and if it’s not to their liking – or at least appealing in the general sense – they will bounce.

So, to make them want to read – or skim through – your content, you need to apply good formatting techniques.

Start off with a good headline – this will be the biggest font in your content and likely in a different font. This is the part that grabs attention. Next add plenty of subheadings. Yoast SEO alarms you when you have more than 300 words without subheadings and for a good reason. It makes the content unreadable.

Use bullet point lists and leave plenty of white space for readers to rest their eyes. Make the paragraph short – 3 or 4 sentences at most.

There is nothing wrong with one sentence paragraphs.

Use images, graphs, videos and other interesting visual cues to give your readers a break and something appealing to look at.

But, just as important is the way you write your content.

For instance, you should start with the most important information first – people are not interested in lengthy expositions and prologues. They want to know the most interesting and valuable information right away. One way to do that is to use Brian Dean’s APP method – Agree, Promise, Preview.

There are many other ways to write engaging and interesting posts – you just have to find the one that works for you.

Provide Social Proof

Social proof means a lot to your visitors. Seeing popular brands and good reviews on your site signals to them that you are trustworthy and that what you are selling has some value. So, don’t forget to add it directly to your home page. Make sure it doesn’t look fake or made-up since some websites tend to do that.

Famous people or brand reviews are the best way to go.

Include an image, or a logo of the brand, state what industry they are in and then just add their review of your business or website. You will immediately come off as someone they can trust by from and talk to. But an even better benefit of this is that they will feel like your product has a high value.

Write Benefit-Oriented Copy

When creating copy, some writers focus on features of the product. This ends up looking like the specification sheet you send to a factory – and that’s not a good way to sell something.

Instead, list the benefits that this product or service have. For example, you are not selling beauty products, you are selling youth and beauty, confidence. You are not selling tires, you are selling safety, sturdiness. You are not selling customer service software, you are selling connectivity and conversions.

So, focus on the question “What’s in it for me?” and answer it the best way you can. Persuade them that this product is the best one for them.

Think About Your Logo

Logo is also a part of your design and your branding. Pay attention to it. Does it accurately show who you are and what you do? Is it consistent with your Web design?

If not, you need to update it.

Logos signal to us what the brand is all about. But even more than that, logo tells us what kind of a message the brand wants to convey and in what way. It show your brand voice, your human side, your mission and what you believe in.

So, for instance, when you see the Apple logo, you recognize it instantly and associate it with creativity.

Make your logo simple but meaningful and memorable.

Our minds work in strange and confusing ways. We associate things with events, memories and impressions. But, if you want to keep your visitors engaged, you can use the way their minds work and apply it to your site. Follow these tips.

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