Some time ago, a post about guarantees appeared on one of my favorite blogger’s website. The post was called How to increase sales by 300% with a persuasive guarantee (plus 39 scripts you can copy today). It was posted by Derek Halpern on his Social Triggers blog and was also sent to all his readers gracefully allowing them to “copy and paste” the list and apply it to their businesses.
It is indeed a great list and I highly recommend you read the original article.
And since I thought 39 types of guarantees are a bit too many to assimilate, I hand-picked the best ones from the list that anyone can easily apply to their online business right away. They are listed below in no particular order (again, adapted from Derek’s list so all credit goes to him for creating it).
Before I do this, let me quickly elaborate on why you need to provide guarantees.
Your brain processes the action of spending money the same way it processes pain. That’s why for many people spending money literally hurts.
There are two ways to take away that pain:
- Offer a product that they desire and need so badly that the happiness triggers in their brain take over the pain ones.
- Offer a compelling guarantee, which eliminates the association of spending with pain
Now, depending on the products you offer you may not be able to do much about 1) however you can always do something about 2).
It works because the guarantee transfers the risk from the buyer to the seller. And when you create the right guarantee – one that people actually believe, and feel comforted by – it turns your offer into a no-brainer.
We know that guarantees work, that is why our services at Business IT Essentials come with an UNBEATABLE 100% satisfaction guarantee. You can try any of our plans for full 30-Days, 100% risk-free. If you don’t LOVE our service, we insist that you get 100% of your money back.
Here is how to use guarantees to increase sales.
The Standard Money-Back Guarantee
Offering a 30, 60 or even 90 day money-back guarantee is pretty standard… and it’s better than nothing. An example of this standard guarantee would be this:
Put us to the test! Use [PRODUCT] for up to [LENGTH] days, risk-free. If for any reason you are not completely satisfied, simply return the product for a FULL refund. Just drop us a line at [EMAIL ADDRESS] to take advantage of our [LENGTH]-Day Money-Back Guarantee.
As a general rule, remember this:
The longer the guarantee period, the better for your sales.
Read more from the original article
More Than Money-Back…
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes for a moment:
When you decide to buy something, you’re not only risking the money you spend. You’re also investing time and passing up on OTHER opportunities.
So in reality, if you don’t like the product you still suffer a loss – even if you get your money back!
As a clever business owner, you can adjust the payoff of your guarantee and offer MORE than money-back to solve that problem…
The standard “more than money-back” guarantee, is the double money-back guarantee. Which means the payoff when people call on the guarantee is double the price.
“We’ll Make It Right” Guarantee
There are other ways you can offer MORE than money-back, and make your guarantee stand out…
Here’s an impressive example, I call this the “We’ll Fix It” guarantee:
LifeLock promises to protect its users against identity theft. If their services don’t work, and you do get your identity stolen, you’d probably care less about getting your money back than actually recovering your identity!
That’s why LifeLock features this guarantee prominently on their site:
If you become a victim of identity theft, LifeLock will spend up to $1 million to hire experts to help your recovery.
The 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
In a way, all the guarantees we’ve seen so far are actually 100% satisfaction guarantees… By that I mean, there were no conditions.
For a short and sweet example of such a guarantee, take the Starbucks “Barista Promise”:
Our Barista Promise: Love your beverage or let us know. We’ll always make it right.
The Hampton Inn is also famous for their 100% guarantee:
Friendly Service, clean rooms, comfortable surroundings, every time. If you’re not satisfied, we don’t expect you to pay.
That’s our commitment & your guarantee. That’s 100% Hampton.
Here’s what’s amazing:
Only 1% of their total revenue goes towards honoring that guarantee!
So more often than not, people don’t want a refund… They just want to know you’ll make it right IF there’s a real issue. A satisfaction guarantee gives you that opportunity.
The “No Questions Asked” Guarantee
You can offer something similar to Nordstrom’s unconditional return policy even if you’re selling digital products. I call it the “No questions asked” guarantee…
Here’s an example (from type designer Sean McGabe Hand Lettering course):
I believe strongly in the quality of Learn Lettering to not only substantially increase your lettering skills, but also make you back 20x your investment. I’ve poured my heart and soul into consolidating a gold mine of knowledge that will enable you to make a living as a lettering artist.
I confidently back it with a 30-Day, Money-Back Guarantee. I want you to dive in deep and experience the full wealth of this resource without inhibition.
If you’re not satisfied, just contact me within 30 days of purchase, and I’ll refund your money. No questions asked.
Now, you’re probably worried and thinking:
The Minimum Result Guarantee
Instead of a vague “satisfaction” guarantee, it’s always better to be CLEAR and SPECIFIC about the RESULTS customers can expect… And that’s what a minimum results guarantee does.
Take for example this guarantee for a home teaching program:
If your grade doesn’t increase by at least 1 level, you’ll receive a full refund.
Now what if you offer a service?
Let’s say you’re a marketing consultant. You could offer something like this:
If I can’t increase your conversion rate by at least 6%, I will issue a full refund.
Or as a personal trainer:
Lose 7lbs in 30 Days or Your Money Back!
Try Before You Buy
There’s always a long line at the ice creamery a couple blocks from my apartment.
Why? Because everyone wants to taste test several flavors before they commit… to ICE CREAM!
Apparently removing the risk of choosing the “wrong” flavor is worth waiting in line…
If you offer different versions of your product, remove the risk of choosing the “wrong” one with a “Try Before You Buy” guarantee.
The Buy-Back Guarantee
If you’re selling physical products in large quantities, consider the Buy-Back guarantee. Think of moving boxes, for example…
The question for your customer is “How many should I get?”
That’s why U-Haul features this guarantee:
We offer 100% buy-back of any unused U-Haul boxes, with receipt, at any U-Haul center nationwide.
This is great for a few reasons…
When people need to buy something in bulk, they’re going to be scared they’re buying too much – and they may buy too little.
This is bad for the customer. It’s also bad for you because you won’t sell as much as you should have sold.
This Buy-Back guarantee, on the other hand, takes the “too little or too much” problem off the table. It makes people buy “too much,” under the guise of, “I can just return the extra.”
The On-Time Guarantee
You know how plumbers are notorious for being late?
That’s why the Benjamin Franklin Plumbing company branded itself “The Punctual Plumber”… and backed it up with their clever on-time guarantee:
At Benjamin Franklin Plumbing your complete satisfaction with both our service and our plumbers is 100% guaranteed. Our on-time guarantee is backed by highly-skilled, expertly-trained plumbers. If we’re not on time, we pay you $5.00 per each minute we’re late (up to $300).
If you provide an in-person service, being on time is probably important to YOUR customers, too.
The Free Sample Guarantee
Can you offer a free sample of a DIGITAL product? Sure…
Think of Amazon. Publishers can include free sample versions of their e-books. That way anyone thinking about buying the book, can get a feel for the writing style and content.
It works if you’re selling a course, too. You can simply offer access to one of your lessons.
Lowest Price Guarantee
I don’t recommend you compete on price… But let’s face it:
Who doesn’t love a good deal?
That’s why travel website sunshine.co.uk offers this straightforward guarantee on their home page:
Find your holiday cheaper, and we’ll refund the difference.
The “Get More” Guarantee
Your customers don’t want your service… they want a certain OUTCOME. And your service is only a way to help them get there.
That’s why I love the “We’ll Give You an Additional 6 months Free” guarantee from Match.com:
If you don’t find someone special during your initial 6-month subscription, we will give you an additional 6 months at no additional cost to you to continue your search. You’ll love your time with us. We guarantee it.
It’s a guarantee that’s focused on an outcome – in the case of a dating site, finding a partner – AND it keeps customers engaged with your product… while also turning someone who may hate you for the rest of their life into someone who may become one of your SUPER fans.
The “Premium Support” Guarantee
Ok, let’s face it:
Sometimes people don’t know how to use your product. Especially if you sell technical products or software. It’s a real risk people take when they buy…
… but it’s a risk you can reduce if you offer a “Premium Support” guarantee.
A good example is hosting: it’s a technical product, most people don’t really understand it, but it’s crucial that it works. Here’s a script:
With 100% uptime and secure, reliable servers, chances are you may never need to talk to us. However, if you do need a helping hand, our world-class U.S.-based technical support team is available 24/7/365. Codero offers a variety of convenient ways to communicate with us for technical or account support help.