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Time Urgency Featured Image
Elena Dobre

The Relation between Time Urgency and Conversion Rate

Each day of the regular man consists of eight hours of work and another four ones spent on doing various activities. In these twelve hours spent outside the intimacy of the home, men usually receive three types of inputs: material goods, skills and time. Now, how it would be to receive only one of them during the twelve hours? I’ll go with boring and frustrating.

It’s important to be capable of spotting the importance of time in this context. Given the fact that we need time to work, eat, sleep, and do all of the great stuff that we want daily, time becomes essential for our happiness. As studies have shown, time becomes problematic for those who do not organize it well according to their desires.

Procrastination has become a source of frustration for the modern man: “People most strongly characterize it as being bad, harmful, and foolish.” (Briody, 1980)

Not only that it is harmful to avoid doing things now instead of tomorrow or later, but it makes us suffer too. The suffering comes from fooling ourselves that if a restructuration of the TO-DO list will solve the pain. The harsh reality is that we just took some time from the future instead of using the present to solve our tasks. No matter if we delay deadlines at work or avoid doing things outside of the office before going to sleep or relax, procrastination is only delaying us to achieve goals.

What’s interesting and useful for marketers is that as the man grows old, he perceives time as flying more quickly. Therefore, if we market products and services to a target audience that doesn’t include kids, we should consider the TIME our friend, not the source of suffering and frustration.

Time urgency  is a solution

Why trying to fool time and suffering instead of using it in our benefit?

Time pressure within the marketing communications usually drives the sense of urgency that makes people act. In advertising, time pressure is usually used to create undeniable offers and constrain the time frame in which the consumers take a decision.

Creating a sense of urgency is working well when you manage to understand that you’re communicating with people who can easily spot  the salesperson behind the offer. Therefore, in order to use these facts about the time factor and its influence over people’s choices, use the right approach. It can make the difference between loyal customers and wanderers.

Be authentic when you sell

Use time pressure to convince people to STOP procrastinating. In case you become pushy with “Buy now or leave it” kind of messages, they’ll notice that you’re trying to sell something to them. And that would not be a problem if people were living in a quite, relaxed environment with only a few companies that offer them products and services. BUT there are hundred of promotional messages that fill the people’s head daily on their way to the office…

The idea that people are opened for cooperation when you offer them something in return has been discussed in studies such as those of Cialdini about the psychology of persuasion. Reciprocity, in this case, consists of offering the following benefit to the customer: in return of purchasing the good or service, he’ll get the satisfaction of solving today’s tasks without delay.

The ultimate goal of using time pressure in the marketing communications is increasing sales. The most usual ways to create a sense of urgency consists of using deadlines and claims of limited supplies. Find a few examples below.

1. Deadlines

    1. Fixed deadlines: “Buy until March 7th…”
    2. Personal deadlines: “Buy within the next hour and…”

When using deadlines makes sure that you also stick to them. Also, use a trustworthy automation system that limits the availability of the offer at the exact amount the time that you included in the offer.

Conversion rate will significantly increase only when you manage to create a real sense of urgency that stops users from procrastinating.

In order to succeed in selling your offers better to the audience, try including another incentives or bonuses. Consumers always welcome free stuf.

2. Claims of limited supplies: the “Only 4 left” case

Imagine that your favorite band comes to town, and there are only 20 tickets left. I would go crazy to know that Lana del Rey is having a live concert in Bucharest, and there are only a few tickets left. Most probably I would buy that damn ticket immediately without even blinking.

There is a trick here too: make sure that the system updates the number of left supplies correctly. Moreover, it should display the critical difference between the total number of products and the current stock of supplies. (e.g.: from 5.000 to 700).

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As you see, there is no unique way or methodology to use time urgency. It’s a principle that should help you achieving your marketing objectives. In any case, only by using it you will be successful somehow. Though, you should measure the impact of including urgency within your communication outputs in order to see if it’s good for your company. You should be tracking these two metrics: conversion rate and revenue.

If you do not know where to start from, here is a list of possible ways to use time urgency:

1. The offers on the website and landing pages – use countdown timers and copywriting techniques

2. PPC campaigns

3. Shopping cart recovery emails

4. Subject lines of the emails and newsletters

Time urgency

5. Strategic pages such as: cart page, product page

6. Any of your press releases, titles for blog posts, social media posts or engagement campaigns

Time urgency social media

Image via Mollie Star

In the end, I would like to tell you that Omniconvert allows you to use previously gathered data to make segments and address them with personalized messages. You have the chance to start applying these tricks on your website in the pop-ups, offers or any content on the website. What’s great about it is that you can test the impact of your actions over conversion rate and revenue with the A/B testing feature. Yes, you can do A/B testing even on pop ups.

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