There are only so many ways you can present price online? I tend to find as a consumer that the price needs to be a clear and confident statement that leaves me in no doubt that I’m looking at the final price – no extras or hidden costs. This works when it comes to standard fast moving consumer goods, where you as the consumer are looking for simply the best deal, however how does this play out in the online comparison space?
It is hard to differentiate in the comparison space where you tend to have only seconds to catch the visitor’s attention and unfortunately the price of something is usually the main hook. From my experience it is certainly a challenge to get the consumers to understand and appreciate why they should deal with you. Let’s not forget that many consumers that are shopping online are either time poor, don’t want to speak to anyone or know it all and are willing to self serve.
So if this is the case; is it right that most comparison sites get straight to the price? In my field – life insurance, most sites that want to offer a more comprehensive comparison service either get the consumer data including contact details and outbound call the consumer whereas others present the insurance quotes online for the consumer to digest at leisure.
Of course many sites want to make the consumer aware of what they think is best about their offering however the online sale is always very focused on price. Why else would a person be comparing if this was not the reason? Let’s be honest, once they’ve been on your site, they are likely to pimp themselves around the comparison site market until they’ve been to 4-5 other sites.
Some sites present their findings very well and the traditional format is to have them displayed vertically. Vertical is popular because consumers can scroll from an original price point being the lowest price to the most expensive. During this process you can also compare features however this is still pretty hard to do online.
Clearly life insurance is not something that you buy everyday and therefore it is hard for the consumer to calculate what they deem as ‘value’. Placing the products in a vertical list based on premium is okay however I think that it could be presented better.
I enjoy seeing sites that use price anchoring. Microsoft as well as LinkedIn do this really well. I would like to see it used in the life insurance space with 3 products in a horizontal arrangement. Ideally the product that you want the consumer to buy placed in the middle. With other products place each side to ensure the ‘value’ is more obvious – ideally with the product to the right being really expensive.
Let me know what your thoughts are on this and in particular if you’ve seen any good examples of price anchoring – especially in the life insurance space.