When it comes to your website material, it’s not just about the words.
Did you know numbers can also be very important as well?
While there are all sorts of rules about writing the rules around numbers aren’t quite so clear.
Especially how we should write numbers.
Yes, there are grammar and style guides telling us how we should write. Want to know what they are so you can maximize your copy?
The Basics of Numbers In Copywriting To Maximize Your Sales
Spell out zero through nine.
Don’t start sentences with numerals.
Spell out “percent,” instead of using the % symbol.
These rules suggest the way we refer to numerals influences how our readers perceive us.
That is kind of true.
Why? Numerals can give your readers’ brains a quick shortcut.
And we are reading and counting with numbers all the time.
People mentally translate words to numerals in order to parse their meaning.
What does that mean?
99 + 1 versus ninety-nine plus one
4,999 versus four thousand, nine hundred and ninety-nine
2-for-1 deal versus two-for-one deal
Use Numbers To Get Your Readers Attention
And if you don’t want to do that, you can spell them out.
This works very well when it comes to percentages and dollar values.
Monetary values, especially large ones, are much easier to read in numerals.
Here are some examples:
$5,000 or $5K versus five-thousand dollars
“5c” is easier to read than “5 cents.”
A really simple way to increase your conversion rate is get your reader to see the math on the page and then do it for them.
Then they get to understand what you mean with no effort!
Turn Your Numbers Into A Mini Story
If you put your numbers into a story and make them an object, your potential client or customer will be able to understand them a lot more.
Put into language that identifies with your business – if you are a restaurant, use food.
Coffees or sandwiches, pizzas or salads.
Or something which you know will appeal to them.
“For the price of a takeaway coffee per week, you could be…”
This makes the time saved more meaningful familiar and puts it in context.
Make The Value Seem More Meaningful
If you want the value to seem smaller, drop them.
Or if you want the number to look smaller, then remove the zeros after the decimal point.
“This can be yours for just $150”
And if you want a number to look bigger, add in the zeros after the decimal point.
“You save a whopping $150.00”
If your number is over a thousand, then adding or subtracting a comma makes the number appear bigger or smaller.
$1,500.00 looks much more expensive than $1500.
Always separate GST/taxes and shipping – this makes the number look smaller.
$216.70 (inclusive of GST) appears significantly bigger than $197 plus GST.
Always make your treatment of tax and shipping explicit to comply with tax laws.
Should you round your prices to the nearest zero or should you leave them as precise figures?
Roger Dooley in How to Set the Right Price Every Time suggests when asking people to buy on the basis of emotion, or fun rounded numbers work a lot better – $150.
However if you are looking at reasoned arguments and logic, then precise numbers get a better result – $150.97
Bundles are another great way to reduce brain pain for your potential client or customer.
If you convert your costs to monthly or daily costs, which are then automatically deducted from a bank account, these trick the brain into thinking there is less pain in the purchase.
Why? Because there is no connection between consumption and spending.
Want to put some of this together?
Instead of saying “Only $1327.” Say “Just $3.63 per day – that’s less than a cup of coffee!”
If you enable the brain to see a bigger value in what the cost is, the brain overrules the purchase pain.
You mentally anchor the price to something much higher.
Here is your sneaky copywriting tip in action:
“Normally getting your teeth whitened involves expensive trips to the dentist costing hundreds of dollars.
This shield can give you five shades lighter teeth in just two days for less than $10”
Numbers And Headlines
If you use numbers in headlines you will get a higher click-through rate.
And women prefer numbers in headlines men.
You will have seen
“Top 10 Ways To”
“The 5 Step Guide”
“7 Tried And Tested”
Notice loads of headlines use odd numbers?
There is research showing odd numbers in headlines such as “5 ways to …” or “3 things to know about …” may work better.
Why? Your brain retains 3-5 bits of information at a time.
Most people also know writers struggle to get to a nice even 10 things.
This is then perceived as at least one item being padding.
Numbers And The Brain
Don’t use percentages to share good news. They do not translate the value as affectively.
“9 out 10 dentists use our toothpaste is more tangible than 90% of dentists.”
You should always start sentences with numbers written as words.
And two numbers next to each other are difficult to read.
Want to see this in action?
“Four 3-year-olds” is easier to read than
Ever wondered why everything seems to be ending in 99 when it comes to pricing?
The number ‘9’ has a powerful affect on the brain.
$9.99 or $49 can significantly increase sales as it is perceived as much cheaper than $10 or $50.
William Poundstone’s book Priceless, this study done by researchers at the University of Chicago and MIT have a tonne of cool research on this.
If you sprinkle numbers through your written material, and hotspots like headlines, subject lines, buttons, Facebook ads, and landing pages, you will see an upsurge in engagement.
The number 3 has got the power.
It’s a case of give me choices. But not too many.
Our brains have evolved to like choices and believe it or not it is a way we protect ourselves from harm.
But it doesn’t like too many choices. This becomes confusing.
So groups of three impact writing and makes things easier for people to remember.
Here are some copywriting examples:
Just do it. — Nike slogan
I’m lovin’ it. — McDonalds slogan
This has been going on for hundreds of years!
Three blind mice. Three little pigs. Three wise men. Three musketeers.
Here are some wise words from the American advertising guru, E. St. Elmo Lewis.
Here are his three copywriting principles:
“The mission of an advertisement is to attract a reader, so that he will look at the advertisement and start to read it; then to interest him, so that he will continue to read it; then to convince him, so that when he has read it he will believe it. If an advertisement contains these three qualities of success, it is a successful advertisement.”
And if you want more Media Content Guru tips, then follow me on my Facebook Page – Media Content Guru. Or check out my Instagram @theoriginalzoenauman.