Oli Gardner

Learn about Conversion-Centered Design offline

In this 56-page ebook, Oli Gardner shows you how to apply the Conversion-Centered Design principles to build high-converting marketing campaigns.

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Conversion-Centered Design

Principle #6 - Closing

There’s nothing more simple yet complex than asking someone to make a decision. Yes or no. Do it or don’t do it. Now or later. Now or never.

Closing the deal is tricky, but it’s made easier if you understand the dynamics and psychology involved in making a decision. There are several factors that influence the decision to click — some are positive and others are negative.

Negative influences

Negative influences are what I call stop words: words, phrases or graphical elements that are placed in close proximity to your CTA, which may create a moment of pause as your visitor contemplates its meaning.

Words such as “spam” in privacy statements below your CTA have been shown to decrease conversions because they plant a negative inference in the mind of your prospects right at the point of conversion.

Trust seals are commonly used with the goal of increasing confidence, when in reality they can come across as desperate, causing reflection like, “Why are they trying so hard to convince me of the security of this transaction? Is it not really secure or trustworthy?”

Is it not really secure or trustworthy?” More often, the key to a secure transaction is the presence of the lock icon in the address bar that denotes that the page uses a secure socket layer (SSL).

Positive influences

Examples of positive influences are statements that reduce anxiety at the point of conversion.

For instance, being explicit about how long it will take for a call back gives people a point of reference. “We’ll respond to your request within four hours” is much stronger than no statement at all.

For a webinar registration, mentioning that the session will be recorded eases the anxiety of not being able to attend, encouraging people to register anyway.

Click-worthy CTA copy

Another critical part of the conversion equation is what you actually write on your buttons: your call to action.

At Unbounce, we’ve looked at our customers’ landing pages to learn more about the impact of different words and phrases in CTA copy. And some of the data is quite surprising...

Price of Free examples

The price of free

Contrary to popular belief, I’ve found in several A/B tests that the word “free” can have a negative influence on conversions.

I think in part this is because we are all becoming savvier about marketing practices. Giving your email to a company is a form of social currency and thus is not free. We understand that we’ll be marketed to over email — making the reference to “free” seem a little like a bait and switch.

On the microsite for our Landing Page Conversion Course, 
I used a Qualaroo survey widget to ask what was preventing people from starting the course. Two common answers were “How much does it cost?” and “I don’t know how much it is.”

Based on that feedback, I hypothesized that reiterating that the course was free in close proximity to the CTA would result in more conversions (button clicks).

I used my photo (as the author) and in a subtle way, mentioned that the course was free. The result of the A/B test?

A/B Test course results example

For this test, I split the traffic 10/90. This was to accelerate the speed of the test based on 
knowing from historical data that the current champion consistently converted at 26%.

New Treatment example

The new treatment lost by 14%.

This got me thinking about the power of the word “free.” We dug deep into our customer data and discovered the following impact of including the word “free” in a CTA (versus not mentioning it).

As you can see, across 20,000 landing pages, CTAs without the word “free” converted on average 16.8% better than those with the word “free.”


The chart below illustrates some other words that are commonly used in CTA copy, and their effect on conversion.**

Lead Gen results example

**Note: data shown represents lead gen landing pages only (pages with a form).

Maximize Conversions Using the Principles of Conversion-Centered Design

In this step-by-step framework, Oli Gardner will show you how to leverage the seven principles of Conversion-Centered Design to create delightful, 
high-converting marketing campaigns.

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