How to Use Confirmation Bias to Your Advantage and Drive Sales
Business Services

How to Use Confirmation Bias to Your Advantage and Drive Sales


Confirmation bias refers to our tendency to recall, favor and remember information that aligns with our own values. In essence, we are more likely to support businesses or favor ads that confirm our beliefs than those which do the opposite.

Recall the last time you saw a new product from big brands like “Apple” or “Tesla”. Our instinct is to immediately associate them with “quality” or “excellence”—or whichever aligns with our experiences and what we’ve seen or heard from the brand. 

This is confirmation bias in action. 

Now, how can you use confirmation bias to drive sales? Here are some sales strategies and examples that will set you on the right path.

1. Create a Gorgeous Homepage for a Positive First Impression

First impressions matter, especially when you market and sell products, tools, or resources. You’ll want to build a positive perception of your brand to pique people’s interest and encourage them to purchase from your business. 

For eCommerce brands, creating a gorgeous homepage should be the focus of your marketing plan. If first-time visitors view your brand favorably from the start, they’re more likely to have a good impression of the products you offer. 

Take for instance business communication platform Slack’s homepage. They have the ambitious words “Slack is where the future works”—on the front of their homepage.

This aligns with the tool’s ability to empower remote and in-house employees. In addition, they have a picture of their platform beside prominent CTA buttons with words like, “Try for Free” and “Sign up With Google”. 

slack to drive sales
From Slack

At the bottom, you’ll find logos of top companies which use their service such as FOX, Intuit, Lonely Planet, Target among others. By looking at these logos, viewers will be amazed to learn the top companies which use their products or services. 

If you require some help with designing your homepage or website, take a look at some qualified web design agencies who can help you out.

2. Have a Referral Program to Get New Customers

Referral programs incentivize current customers to recommend your products and services to their peers. When the referred friend ends up buying from the company, customers can receive rewards like discounts, freebies, and coupons. 

People are more likely to believe referrals from their friends and family, which is why referrals are so effective. 

In fact, Referralcandy found that people pay 2x more attention to recommendations from friends.

Likewise, 92% of consumers trust recommendations from people they know. 

These numbers show that people are biased towards brands and products that people in their network favor. As such, referral programs are an effective customer acquisition strategy. 

Because our loved ones trust and believe in a particular brand, we’re more likely to follow their example and have the same beliefs too. 

For example, Love Wellness’ referral program encourages brand advocates to refer their friends. Then, when referred friends make their purchase, they can get $20 off. Likewise, brand advocates can also get $20 off their next purchase. 

3. Use Testimonials and Product Reviews to Drive Sales

During a customer’s decision-making process, they want to know whether the product or service is worth it. Hence, they look for supporting evidence like testimonials and product reviews to affirm their likelihood to purchase.

That’s precisely why 92% of shoppers check testimonials and online reviews when considering a purchase. Similarly, 72% of consumers state positive reviews and testimonials can boost their trust in a business. 

Having testimonials and product reviews can significantly impact conversion rates. Under the influence of confirmation bias, people will tend to think, “If these companies or people like the product or service, then I’ll probably like it too.”

Beauty brand Soko Glam’s homepage has reviews and testimonials with positive quotes from consumers who use their product. The five-star rating and reviews show what an average customer can experience with the brand.

From Soko Glam

Positive feedback from past customers reinforces the idea that buying your product is the right thing to do. 

To get testimonials and product reviews, a good tip is to send an email that reminds customers to give their feedback. Increase response rates by offering incentives such as coupons or discounts. That way, you can increase the number of reviews across all product pages and encourage more people to try the products you offer. 

Take it a step further and use customer feedback to improve your overall product experience. Using product experience management software you can interpret data from customer feedback and gain insights that could improve your customer experience. 

4. Make Your Brand Relatable

When people identify with a brand, they say phrases like, “This is the best brand for me!” or “I feel included in the XYZ brand’s message”. 

In hindsight, these words are a sign that our biases have been triggered. Because confirmation bias relies on our customers’ beliefs, values, and expectations, we want our brand to be relatable for our target audience. 

To get this done, we highly recommend understanding the profile of your target consumers. Who are your current customers? Why would they buy from your brand? When would they use your products? The answers to these questions should be the basis for your brand’s image, visuals, and campaigns. 

For example, Fenty Beauty – founded by Rihanna – has the tagline “Beauty for all”. Regardless of a woman’s race or skin tone, they want them to feel included. That’s exactly why their products come in a variety of shades. They even post photos of women, from racial and cultural backgrounds,  applying their beauty products to reinforce their brand’s main message and inclusivity.

Utilizing imagery that resonates with your target audience, confirms their bias and proves that you’re the brand for them. 

5. Highlight the Positive 

Focusing on the solutions and benefits that your brand offers will put you in a positive light. It could also trigger consumers to have a favorable perception of your brand and drive sales.

Not surprisingly, people want to hear about the good things you can offer, rather than focusing on problems. 

Glossier’s product page has a “Why It’s Special” or “Good to Know” section. While consumers may have stumbled upon the page because of the product name or photo, their positive perception is reaffirmed with a bulleted list featuring the reasons why they should purchase the product. 

Focusing on the benefits you offer lets you position your brand as the solution and drive sales. You can confirm their expectations and let them know that you have what they need.

6. Praise Existing Customers for More Sales

Customer-related interactions are usually transactional in nature. 

Rather than letting salespeople engage in tiresome conversations, they could improve the experience by complimenting your prospects. 

Train your salespeople and marketers to compliment customers as they make their way across the sales funnel. Send a thank you message or tell them “good job” after finishing a tutorial video. If possible, show the results they’ve generated after using your products and services and congratulate them for their wins. 

Giving compliments and genuinely saying thanks helps reaffirm that you’re the ideal business to work with. However, you shouldn’t overwhelm them with too many praises, or it’ll seem like worthless and insincere flattery. 

Take for instance Airbnb which sends a thank you message to its hosts. They have a personalized highlight reel to display customers’ successes. This inspires hosts to keep using their service and to encourage their friends to host too. 

7. Test Hypotheses for Sales Analytics

There are many strategies to trigger our customers’ confirmation bias.

But are these strategies actually working? Sometimes our own assumptions and biases can shape our own marketing campaigns and lead to poor results. As such, it’s important to conduct A/B tests regularly. After all, our intuition isn’t always a reliable source for predicting the best strategy to trigger confirmation bias and drive conversions

For example, price-based incentives like discounts, cash, or coupons are assumed as effective customer acquisition tactics. But are these incentives actually worth it? 

Consider SimCity 5’s pre-order incentive which had a $20 off discount. 

The treatment group had no incentive. 

Results revealed that the version with no pre-order incentive increased conversions by 40%. It seems people just wanted the game and the offer didn’t matter. 

This example proves testing is crucial to confirm our own beliefs. It also helps us determine alternative methods to attract customers.

Using Confirmation Bias for Sales Strategies

Confirmation bias can play a big role in the success of your business if you know to use it to drive sales

Make a good first impression by having a gorgeous homepage that puts your products and services in the best light. Have testimonials and product reviews that prove the benefits of your products. Highlight the advantages of using your products to affirm their expectations. 

For the best results, we recommend setting up your own referral program too. That way, brand advocates can spread the word about your products and services. This is a lot more believable than sponsored ads and messages. 

Here’s to hoping these strategies have helped you use confirmation bias the right way to drive sales.


Access our exclusive content!