By Gregory Ciotti @Wingify 1/30/13
When it comes to getting your message heard, optimizing your email marketing efforts to improve conversions is of paramount importance.
Below, I’m going to discuss a simple tactic that I’ve recently used across 3 separate industries to improve click-through rates by as much as 17%.
(Yes, you read that correctly)
It’s founded on a simple psychological principle put forward by a professor at Columbia Business School, and it deals with the human mind’s inability to make decisions when we have too many choices, causing us to have action paralysis.
Let’s dig in!
When Choice is Demotivating
Before I get into my specific results, I wanted to discuss what’s happening behind the scenes with these improvements.
Sheena Iyengar is a professor and psychological researcher at the Columbia Business School and the author of The Art of Choosing. In her most famous study called When choice is demotivating, Sheena conducted her famous “jam test” at an upscale supermarket.
In this study, Sheena compared customer interaction and actual purchases between two different types of jam displays:
- The first display featured 24 flavors of jam
- The second display featured only 6 flavors of jam
While the 24 jam display had a significantly higher “interaction” rate (more customers taking samples), it only had around 3% of customers actually making a purchase.
This is in start contrast to the 6 jam display, which had over 30% of people make a purchase!
The conclusion she drew from this research is that too many options can cause people to choosenothing instead, and that a plethora choices can actually be demotivating for customers rather than empowering.
What This Has to do With Email Marketing
I mention this study and it’s conclusions because they apply directly to how I’ve improved click-through rates for 3 separate newsletters that I work with. (continue @Wingify)