An analysis of the role of the pricing page in your conversion funnel

This was the hypothesis of one of our clients: a complex pricing strategy leads to lack of clarity and thus to fewer sign-ups.

They immediately assumed this was the cause of a lot of visitors abandoning the product right after visiting the pricing page.

Something needed to change and fast.

What was their situation?

The client I’m talking about is selling a marketing product for e-commerce sites.

Because of the complexity of their product, their prices were not fix. They were set according to a number of elements, amongst which the traffic volume and the number of interactions. This generated a different price for every client.

Stats showed that a very high number of visitors abandoned the site right after visiting the pricing page, and before creating an account.

Naturally, the company came to the conclusion that they were having a clarity problem with respect to their pricing policy. Users did not know how much the product cost, so they churned without thinking about it twice.

This policy was losing them a lot of potential clients.

What was their solution?

The company tried to turn things around by doing a lot of A/B testing in the attempt to make the pricing page much clearer. Unfortunately, experiment after experiment, they failed to optimize the efficiency of that page.

They were right however that the visit to sign-up funnel was their best bet at increasing growth, as this was where they registered the biggest drop.

All the other conversion steps from sign-up to revenue were doing really well. Their stats were showing clearly that people had a very good onboarding and retention rate once they created an account.

So if they wanted to boost their business, they needed to maintain those rates and focus their energy on improving the funnel from visit to create account.

What was our solution?

When we started working with them, we wanted to dig a bit deeper and see what was happening in this funnel from the first visit to creating an account.

We first analysed all the users who created an account and their interactions with the site.

To our surprise, we found out that 25% of those who created an account did so without spending too much time interacting with the website, basically seconds after entering the site during their first visit.

This behavior was not at all what the client expected. So we wanted to see how much of the site traffic had a similar behavior.

Here came the shocking part: we discovered that for 70% of the people who entered the site, the first or second page they visited was the pricing page. Basically, they reached this page in less than 30 seconds.

What did this mean?

This meant that the vast majority of the people did not know exactly what the product did, they were simply not educated enough with respect to its potential.

All they knew about the product was what they imaged about it based on the promise made on the homepage or on various ads, and on their previous experience with similar products.

We were dealing with a lot of people who were reaching the pricing page and who had unrealistic expectations of what the product should be like, as well as how much it should cost.

For all those who had a different idea of how much this product was supposed to cost compared to how much it really cost, this was a good enough reason to abandon the product, regardless of the actual price or how good the UX for that page was.

The good news was that the conversion rate was much much higher for all the users who reached the site and spent more than 7 minutes on it, reading about the product.

The bad news was that they represented the minority.

The whole purpose was to get more people to create an account, as they noticed that those who created an account finished the onboarding process in a large percent and also had a good retention rate.

What was there to do to increase the number of sign-ups?

Two conclusions sprang from our analysis:

A. They had to encourage people to document themselves before checking the pricing page.

This was not to say that they had to make it difficult for people to check the prices, but they weren’t supposed to encourage it as a call to action.

So how do we get more people to spend more time on the site documenting themselves with respect to the product?

In this particular case we noticed that, previously, if visitors pressed sign-up they would automatically reach the price page, where they were supposed to select their package. So, we urged the company to give up this feature.

Instead, we encouraged them to implement a ‘learn more’ or ‘read more’ call to action.

B. On the other hand, for those who did reach the pricing page, the page should be redesigned with marketing techniques in mind.

Its main purpose should not be to merely show the prices, but to justify the prices by explaining the benefits of the various packages.

In fact, this page too became an informative page, helping the potential customers learn more about the product.

Basically, it meant the the pricing page didn’t necessarily need to have a fixed price, nor to be extremely clear price-wise, contradicting thus our client’s assumption, but to have a price that was justified by the benefits.

What was the outcome?

Since then, our client modified the site according to our suggestions. The result was a spectacular increase in generating new accounts.

Thankfully, they also managed to maintain both the onboarding rate and the retention rate, which translated in a much higher number of conversions and a higher revenue.

For more articles on analytics, please check out my weekly newsletter. You can subscribe here.

Author: Claudiu Murariu

InnerTrends' founder and lead analyst Claudiu Murariu is also the author of DataDiary, a weekly newsletter about and for companies that use data in their business decision making process. You can follow him on Twitter @cllaudiu.