Actionable Optimisation

Actionable Optimisation #58: Using positive reinforcement to increase customer motivation

 October 12, 2021

By  Customers Who Click

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If you’re a parent, you know the power of positive reinforcement - and there isn’t a single reason as to why you can’t harness it for your ecommerce store.

It can come extremely useful, especially if you want to encourage your customers to progress into their journey, whether by completing their account information or filling out a survey or a website quiz to determine the best product fit for their needs.

LinkedIn Sales Navigator does it well.

Positive reinforcement to increase customer motivation

Your Sales Navigator Coach scores your activity based on the number of features you have tried and shows your progress to encourage further actions.

As you can see, LinkedIn Sales Navigator’s example isn’t particularly difficult to level up, making the entire experience easier and more rewarding, so users are more likely to keep trying out the new features.

Note that in LinkedIn’s example, the message doesn’t just say “Complete your profile, here are the things you need to do” but rather breaks it into “here’s what you do next”. Why should people complete their profiles if they can use all of the platform’s features with their profiles incomplete?

The way LinkedIn frames their messaging motivates the user to continue improving their profile for their own benefit. It uses elements of gamification to encourage the user to progress into their journey while rewarding their efforts along the way.

Now, you may think this sounds similar to progress bars - and you wouldn’t be far off, except, in this case, the user is motivated by praising their actions. This tactic leverages the theory of self-efficacy, which refers to the belief in our capabilities to complete a task. 

High or low self-efficacy determines whether or not someone will choose to take on a challenging task or perceive it as impossible to complete, and I’ve certainly noticed that customers will often give up on a task just because it seems too complex.

Here’s where the positive reinforcement part comes in because you can absolutely tap into this belief and motivate the user to keep going by simply increasing their self-efficacy with positive messaging once a step has been completed.

It could be as simple as “Congratulations, you’re almost there!”, or “Whoop! You’re one step away from healthy and radiant skin!”.

Self-efficacy and positive reinforcement are great tactics to use to reduce the number of customers dropping out mid-task, whether it’s while filling out a customer satisfaction survey or website quiz designed to help them find the right product.

Tapping into the self-efficacy theory not only motivates the user to progress into their journey, but it also boosts the customer experience as the user feels good about themselves and reinforces the value of what they’re doing.

Have you ever used the theory of self-efficacy in your strategy? Or have you seen anyone doing it really well? I’m surprised I don’t see more of them, it’s literally one of the easiest tactics you can implement to increase your conversions.

Customers Who Click


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