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Test Idea #6: Pessimism bias



    When creating your copy, designing your website and choosing which images to use, focus on addressing your client?s worst fears. Rather than just selling them your business, emphasize how you can solve their problems for them. Identify their pain point and add images and text to your website that address the worst outcome of that pain point to trigger the Pessimism Bias.


    By adding images to your website that call on your customers? worst fears, they will be more aware of how much they need your help and you will increase the chance of converting your website visitors into paying customers.


    For most people, their brain is hardwired to anticipate the worst case scenario. It is almost more stimulating and satisfying to expect a negative outcome, rather than a positive one, and it also seems to be a lot easier.
    In CRO, this Pessimism bias can be used when you?re crafting your copy or designing your website. Identify what is the pain point for your customers that you can solve and address the worst possible outcome. The human mind is more likely to latch onto something that resembles a negative scenario they are already expecting, so they will be more inclined to consider you as a solution to it if you appeal to a fear they already have.
    For example, if you are selling cloud storage, show your visitors an image of someone who had just lost all their files, rather than someone who is happily using your service.

    What to test

    The current website, or Variant A, has an image that displays the product on its own, in this case an alarm device. The test version or Variant B also has a header image, but this image appeals to your customer?s fear, showing a burglar entering the home. The focus shifted from the actual product to the pain point you are solving for your clients.
    You can use this principle on any image you are adding to your website, but especially on landing and product pages.

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