Whether or not you’ve noticed this of late, we humans aren’t always the most rational of entities. Not that we’re completely irrational, either – but, with emotions playing a big part in everything we do, our intentions, choices and decisions can change from day to day at the drop of a hat.
As eCommerce marketers, then, while we’re going through our own daily battle to stay on the right side of rational, we need to constantly anticipate how our customers are going to respond.
While we’re unable, at least currently, to get a complete idea of what a customer’s emotional state is, there are many things we can pick up on that allow us to make smart, rational decisions in our strategies at the right times.
Making sense of emotions
According to Psychology Today, emotions are the primary reason why consumers prefer brand-name products. Effectively, brands represent personality, and personality means an emotional response. The more prestigious and well-established the brand, the more history there is linked to it, and the stronger an emotional response is triggered.
In fact, it is believed that up to 95% of purchasing decisions are entirely subconscious – although the decision-making process may appear to be a completely conscious or rational decision in itself. In effect, what is happening is the subconscious mind triggering an emotional response, which the conscious mind then agrees to, quietly, and without question.
However, the existing emotional state of the individual also plays its part, too – and significantly. Someone in a low mood may not be as receptive to an advertisement or offer, for instance, as they would be at other times, just as someone full of pep might be temporarily deflated to encounter a lengthy purchase process full of terms and conditions and reams of information (see my blog on in the impulsive purchasing behaviour of Millennials for more information on how to resolve this pitfall!).
Searching emotional states
So, how can you ascertain how a customer is feeling, simply from what they’re searching for? Well, with a little research and analysis, you can actually offer them everything they’re looking for – by establishing what sort of emotional response they need right now.
Surprise me – a customer may, for instance, be idly searching, clicking and interacting with a wide range of products and services. Stumbling across an exclusive or limited-time offer may be just the excitement they need.
Excite me – similarly, a consumer on the lookout for a little adventure, spending plenty of time navigating through pages without turning back, is likely to be wowed by something brand new. A new offer, product, service or feature, perhaps with a free or low-priced sweetener thrown in, could be the just the thrill they’re looking for.
Astound me – people focusing on precise search terms are looking for one, standout answer to their question. They demand information and evidence in abundance that what you offer is the panacea to their current predicament. These people are prime candidates for long-term trust in your brand, too, if you can show them the incredible brand story behind your business.
Enlighten me – customers who spend time looking at reviews and testimonials also want encouragement, but need it from far and wide. What sort of trust marks and recommendations can you place in front of them at the most opportune moments?
Comfort me – consumers who ask lots of short, uncomplicated questions are naturally driven by answers. They want to read FAQs, see simple, honest information and feel reassured by attentive customer service in the form of follow-up emails, tracking numbers and guarantees.
Help me out – people whose search relates to a specific problem could be looking for something local and last-minute, and would certainly benefit from live chat to fully resolve their problem. Essentially, the first person to step in and help them when they need it will win.
Coping with all of the emotion
So, in order to meet this whirlwind of emotional demands, eCommerce marketing professionals are going to need a platform that is built to respond. This is in not just the sense of giving visitors what they want, but also being flexible enough to continuously adapt to changes in consumer behaviour.
That’s why, when people come to me to discuss the Visualsoft eCommerce platform, I’m able to talk them through the ideal software for delivering their own digital strategies. Whether they’re surprised, excited, astounded, enlightened, comforted or helped out (or even all of the above!), I can pair their business with the eCommerce platform they need to grow and succeed.
Call me on 07572 236 086 for more information, and maybe a little emotion, too!
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