When your customers can see the consequences of their decisions before they make them, the decision is easier to make.
One way to help your customers overcome the complexity of choices that you are presenting to them is to help them understand the interaction of their preferences and the associated trade-offs.
Your customers’ wants, needs, and desires are expressed through their preferences. These appear as attributes or characteristics that they are looking for when they size up your product.
Too often when a customer tells us what they want, we simply jump to the appropriate solution and present a single choice.
This leaves too many questions in the mind of the customer. Can they really trust your recommendation? Are you weighing their concerns and care-abouts with the same emphasis that they are?
When your customers see the cause and effect of their preferences, it becomes easier for them to see how a certain product or service meets their needs.
If you have used the online music service Pandora, you’ve seen this cause and effect behavior in action.
When you type in a musician or song, Pandora immediately starts to play music that you’ll like. It is a very clear cause and effect.
Likewise consider how amazon.com handles your preferences. They use the preferences that you’ve expressed through your browsing history and purchase behavior to make very relevant and valid product recommendations. This is also a very clear cause and effect.
When you give your customers feedback based on their expressed preferences, it helps them see the consequences of those preferences.
Another example is from the car buying processes. Often if you want a certain type of feature, for example air conditioning, you can’t get the base model car. Or if you want the leather seat package, you need to buy the premium model.
Let your customers identify their preferences to you. This can be in conversation or through an interactive web experience online. As they reveal their preferences start to show them what options they have left.
Help the customers see the cause and effect of their preferences. This way they can decide with confidence because they will be well informed of how their desires impact product selection and their ultimate purchase.