Web Marketing Today

How a ‘Mental Walk-Through’ Stimulates Sales

People go only to places they have already been in their minds” – Roy H. Williams

If you’re selling a service rather than a product — or if you’re selling a customized or personalized product — it’s vital to get prospective customers as comfortable as possible with the process of hiring and working with you.

More importantly, you must get them to imagine — in the most inviting and non-threatening a manner as possible — the benefits of receiving your services.

Both of these goals are achieved with what I like to call “Mental Walk-Through” pages, sometimes called, “Project Timelines,” “Working With Us” pages, and the like.

Tentative Exploration

First, most people want to know how far into the process they can explore before they’re either committed to buying or subjected to serious sales pitches or sales pressure. A lot of times, prospects are saying to themselves something like, “I’m curious, thinking of buying it, but not sure about….”

  • Can I afford it? (Are the prices bottom-line prices or bait-and-switch?)
  • Will it fit in my schedule? (Yoga, gyms, diets, spas, remodels)
  • What will all the extras cost? (kitchen remodels, decks, landscaping)
  • What will the maintenance entail? (think pools, boats, hairstyles, etc.)
  • How much will the process will disrupt my schedule or life? (surgery, remodels, etc.)
  • Can you really personalize this the way I want it?
  • How much will custom work add to the price?
  • How long will it be until I can enjoy my new addition, deck, pool, slimmer sexier body, eyesight, blemish-free skin?

And so on.

Reassurance

The walk-through should not only answer all those questions, but reassure prospects that they can make contact, explore their areas of concern, and build confidence without “crossing the line” into “Buy Now” sales pressure or commitment.

Risk-free guarantee. If you have a risk-free guarantee, this is where to emphasize it, by showing how customers can see the designs/mock-ups/plans etc. and still walk away if they’re not thrilled. Or even experience the service and get their money back. Or whatever.

Projecting results. If people start seeing results in the first few classes, days, or weeks, then you can have your website visitors mentally imagining those results as part of the timeline walk-through.

Downsides. If there are some downsides, this is where to build massive credibility by including typical customer pain in the walk-through, as well. If they’ll be sore after their first few classes, or if tearing up their wall for the addition will make a mess, or if their skin will be a bit more sensitive for a few hours, you can put this right in the timeline as well.

Testimonials. You can even put some testimonials into the timeline to cover a variety of customer reactions and experiences for each stage. Now you’re really building credibility.

The Next Step

At the end of the walk-through, you’ll not only have added quite a bit of reassurance to your prospects, but you will have allowed them to have done business with you in their mind’s eye. They’ll have already gone there and done that in their imagination, making them that much more ready to go there and okay it for real. That’s why the end of the walk-through is an ideal place for a “next step” call-to-action.

So if you’re a small or local business specializing in services or customized products, try creating a “Doing Business With Us” or a “Project Timeline” page. You’ll be surprised at how many customers will quite quickly move from imagining doing business with you to actually doing business with you.

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Jeff Sexton
Jeff Sexton
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