They stop by, they click around, but too many of them just leave. If you run an online store, you’d definitely like to convert more of your traffic into buyers. All online stores face a somewhat essential problem that prevents more conversions, trust! Or more specifically the lack of trust. People tend to trust things more when other people trusted them first. This is something that can be impacted in surprising ways with the smart use of social proof.
How can social proof help build trust!
Social proof can mean many things, but the concept itself is simple. People tend to trust things more when other people trusted them first.
And there are several ways a business can display this kind of trust:
- Reviews and testimonials
- Influencer recommendations
- Social proof notifications
You’re likely more familiar with the first 3 kinds of social proof than you are with the last. Reviews, referrals, and influencers are found all over online.
The newest kind of social proof marketing—social proof notifications—appeared from a unique need presented by the e-commerce world: How can online shops show that they’re popular, busy stores if people only see a static website?
The answer: by actively capturing and showcasing the activity of other users. When a person takes action on your website, show that action in real time to other visitors so that they see the activity happening within your store.
All about the visitor’s experience
The goal of adding these notifications is to use social proof for building trust, creating a sense of activity, and of course, driving conversions.
When a person takes action on your website, show that action in real time to other visitors. As people visit your website, seeing this live activity helps them to understand that your brand is alive and valued by other customers.
On top of that, their experience is improved through their exposure to currently popular products, awareness of other customers shopping with your company, and proof that your site is a place where people like to shop.
Seeing exactly what products others are purchasing in real time, demand is shown off and scarcity is implied. And, by seeing that real people are behind these purchases, social proof is delivered.
How social proof notifications work
Notifications need user activity. The most obvious user activity to show off when building social proof is conversions.
Whether conversions means product purchases, signups, contact form submissions, or nearly any other critical user action, showing that people are engaging with your product in near-real-time encourages others to do the same.
But you aren’t limited to conversions for social proof notifications. Current visitor counts, most popular products recently purchased, and other inclusions are also possible.
Once you recognize the impact that social proof notifications can have on conversions, it’s easy to wonder if faking some data to imply more activity would make sense. It doesn’t!
Social proof is about as honest as marketing gets and honesty is what your visitors deserve. When you see social proof notifications as a way to tell honest stories and improve user experience, you’ll also realize all of the great stories you can start telling to further improve conversions. If you have a good product, you don’t need to lie in order to sell it.