Want to boost your landing page conversion rates?
You need strong proof.
One of the most powerful concepts in all of marketing. And also one of the single biggest contributors to high conversion rates.
It’s no mystery why.
It’s obvious that real, believable proof that your product works is going to lead to increased conversions. If you know it’ll work before you buy, you’ll feel much more confident to buy it. Period.
The best advertising and marketing campaigns are generally proof driven.
And that’s why inside this post, I’m going to detail 101 different types of proof elements you can include in any type of landing page to boost your conversion rates.
So with that said, lets get into it.
1) Test Data
Test data has the similar effect scientific data has.
However, while scientific data is done by actual scientists, test data is something you can do all by yourself. It’s not a great fit for some markets, but in others, it’s an amazing proof element.
If you can split-test that landing page A converted 25% more than landing page B, now you have original and undeniable test data. Doing this is so effective, some companies sell subscriptions like hell with this kind of data alone.
Now, maybe you’re not split-testing landing pages.
But you can split-test things like how fast towel A absorbs water than towel B.
Be creative with it.
2) Charts & Graphs
The thing about data is that it’s hard to read. When it’s hard to read, it’s ignored. And when it’s ignored, its effectiveness is slashed.
This is especially true when you have a lot of it.
So when you can make it easy to understand, you’re adding in another layer of proof. Now your prospect actually cares. Now they can actually consume it, internalize it, and make decisions based off it.
For a great example of this, just look at P90X commercials. They will effectively explain how their unique mechanism’s like “Muscle Confusion” and “Muscle Acceleration” work using graphs even though they are just made up terms.
3) Chart Comparisons
This is a very common one.
So you’re scrolling down a page and you see this huge box with rows, columns, checkmarks, X’s, and highlights. It’s a comparison chart with the goal of positioning the product being sold as vastly superior than competitors products.
They work because of clarity.
A great chart comparison lays out features & benefits of one product to another. Of course, it’s usually cherry-picked, but it works. When you use this, you need make the end result as obvious as possible.
SaaS companies do a great job with this. Supplements do the same.
4) Visual Comparisons
By visual comparison, I mean a visual demonstration done side-by-side with a competitors product.
This is a notch above a regular demonstration. It’s extremely effective because you can actually see it. And if you can do it live, even better. In fact, some infomercials will do everything they can to make it appear as if it was live.
Funny enough, the products you’ll mostly see doing this are cleaning-related. That’s because they low-cost, visual, and understandable. At least more so than other products.
A great example of this is are OxyClean’s infomericals. Every one of them will contain a visual comparison to make it obvious that their cleaning solution is way better than that of the competitions.
5) Scientific Studies
When you have scientific data behind you, it’s very hard to dispute. At least on the surface level. Entire sales pitches that actually sell can be created based on just 1 piece of data alone.
With that said, this proof element really does it best when you can stack on test after test after test. The goal? To make your claims undeniably true. The more pieces of data you have, the better.
If you have access to test data, add it immediately to your landing pages. And if you’re in a market that is more open to talking in scientific terms, test data is practically mandatory.
6) Unique Mechanism
A unique mechanism is the “thing” that makes your product actually work.
A couple examples of this includes knives that use a certain type of stainless steel no one else uses or a more powerful blender that can blend just about anything.
Unique mechanisms serve as amazing proof elements because you’re telling someone why something works. And if you’re selling a physical product, you can sometimes even point to it physically. That’s powerful.
A great example of a unique mechanism is the George Foreman Grill. The whole product is based off the built-in slant that lets the fat slide right off.
7) Unique Process
Not everything is as simple as a unique “widget”.
In some cases, you will need to describe the “secret” behind your product as a process.
Again, this works as an amazing proof element because you’re explaining why something works. Plus, because you’re laying out the whole process, you’re making it that much easier for someone to trust you.
Remember though… it’s not just A process… it’s a unique process.
With that said, just 1 part of the process has to be unique. It can also just be a unique combination of common things. Everything else can be a carbon copy of what everyone else does. Just make sure to lay it all out in an understandable way.
8) Unique Naming
Want to know a secret?
You don’t actually have to have something unique in your product. You just need to be the first call out a lesser known thing and give it a unique name.
Unlike the other forms of describing a unique mechanism, this is not about the special function in a product.
Instead, it’s all about the special presentation.
One great example of this is P90X3’s “Muscle Acceleration”.
There is nothing revolutionary about extreme 30-minute workouts. They just found scientific data backing up the concept, which very few of their customers would know about, and made it their own by giving it a unique name.
9) Reason Why (For)
The “reason why” is one of the least used, but most powerful proof elements you can have on your page.
Basically, you’re just giving a reason why your prospect should buy.
This goes above just stating claims.
For example, holding a 50% off is good. If you want to really want to take it to the next level though, give it a reason why. Maybe it’s a birthday sale. Maybe it’s a Christmas sale. Maybe it’s a sale because it’s the last time you’re selling the product.
Whatever it is, give it a reason.
That alone will boost conversions.
10) Reason Why (Against)
Giving a reason why for your stuff is great, but you can do more.
You can also give a reason why your customer should not pick any of the other options available. This in it of itself is a proof element, because you’re now giving reasons why you’re the only option that makes any sense.
Again, giving reasons boost believability.
The reasons must be strong reasons. But if you can pull it off, then you’re set.
A good example of this is refuting a claim made by a competitors product and giving reasons why that specific claim is wrong. You can even combine other proof elements to further enhance your argument.
11) Logical Argument
Even though most marketing and advertising is emotion based, nothing can replace a sound logical argument.
This is pretty obvious.
Yet, not many people actually think about this. It’s more of an afterthought. It doesn’t happen too often. However, when it does, it causes confusion. And confusion kills sales…
So it’s in your best interest to use sound reasoning.
With that said, there are multiple types of reasoning. Inductive, deductive, and conditional. That’s a lot of options. However, if you can ask yourself, “does this make sense?” then you’re set.
For best results, allow 2-3 other people to read your argument and see if it makes sense to them. If it’s not an outright yes, then change it.
12) Industry Specialization
It’s one of the first pieces marketing advice just about anyone gets.
Niching down and specializing in a specific industry is a powerful proof element because you’re implying you’re an expert on a certain topic.
If you have knee pain, you want to go to a knee specialist. Pretty obvious.
In this form of specialization though, your focus is on the industry. For example, you may be a marketer who specializes in growing fitness gyms.
This way, you’re explicitly saying you’re great at what you do for a specific segment of the market. If a gym owner is looking for marketing help and finds someone who specializes in helping people like him, then that marketer will probably get the gig.
13) Method Specialization
Specialization is key.
However, there are more than one type of specialization.
In method specialization, your focus is on the deliverable.
For example, instead of being a marketer, you’re an email marketer or a FB ads expert.
The great thing about this type of proof element is that you’re still a specialist, but without cornering yourself to a specific market. You can be an email marketer for gyms, physical therapists, lawyers, and even theme parks if you wanted too.
Regardless of what deliverable you choose, it should be prominent on your landing page. In fact, it should be the first thing I notice. Back up your specialization claim with imagery and naming to reinforce it.
14) Trust Seals
You know those small seals near the checkout button?
Usually, they will say something like “secured checkout” or even have the word “trust” in there. Many of these types of trust seals are attained by paying a service that will confirm it for you.
Anyway, believe it or not, they help. A lot.
When your customer is at the checkout, they are pretty much looking for any reason to not buy. It’s just a natural instinct. It’s better to not buy than to buy and regret it.
So even though these trust seals are not big, they let your customer know that you are safe to do business with. Even just 1 trust seal and can help you close a deal.
Certifications are huge.
Whether you attain your certification at a university or from a 3rd party, they make a huge difference in how you can position yourself. You’ve proved that you know your stuff without your customer having to “take a chance” on you.
It’s also easily promotable.
Every time you mention yourself, you can easily mention it.
Now, if you do have a certification from a 3rd party, it helps if that brand is known. The stronger that brand is, the stronger the certification is as a proof element. With that said, a certification is usually better than no certification.
A degree from a university is probably the most classic form of proof element.
Now, while many people would debate the value of a degree, it can still be useful as a proof element if you already have it.
A degree is supposed to represent mastery over a specific topic, so as long as what you have is within the same area as what your business is about, it can help. For example, having a biology degree can help sell nutrition plans.
Also, much like certifications, a degree becomes the most valuable when the giver of that degree is well known. For example, a Harvard degree is a stronger proof element than a college no one has heard about.
17) Contact Information
You’ve ever seen a business really display their phone number?
And I don’t mean the businesses that have you search their entire site to find it. I’m talking about the businesses that make it really visible and even encourage you to contact them.
While it’s simple, it’s a proof element nonetheless.
That phone number builds trust. It says that the business is real and reachable. It’s not a proof element for a particular product, but a proof element for the whole business in general.
Regardless of what it is you’re selling, there’s no excuse to not make it easy to contact you.
18) Infographics & Visualizations
Very few people think of infographics or any type of visualization in general as a proof element, but they are… just not in the regular sense.
They are a way to display proof. A way that’s easy to understand, fast to consume, and flexible enough to emphasize the real proof element to be presented.
In other words, they make real proof much stronger.
Don’t be stuck in just the infographic mindset either. Any type of visualization can do the job. It just needs to be formatted for the specific landing page you’re putting it on.
19) Before & Afters
If you’ve ever seen an infomercial, you’ve been bombarded by before & after’s.
That’s because they flat out work. When put side by side, they are an amazing proof element that shows real change and improvement. The more visual, the more effective they become.
They also do amazingly well when stacked.
That’s because they are easy and fast to consume. It’s obvious, especially when you can give some data point behind the pictures.
For example, weight loss ads will have a great before & after photo alongside a “Joe Lost 20 pounds” headline. Combined, they make before & after’s one of the strongest types of proof elements out there.
Broad terms aren’t really trustworthy.
That’s because they can mean anything. They also imply there’s nothing behind them to back them up. It’s only logical.
However, the more specific you are, the more likely you are to be believed.
It’s one thing to say you lost a lot of weight after a few months. It’s another thing to say you lost 20 pounds in 12 weeks with 30min workouts. Now that sounds like there’s real substance behind the claims.
Specificity is one of the simplest and most straightforward proof elements there are.
21) Customer Origin Specificity
Testimonials are powerful.
However, there’s one certain part of the testimonial that very few ever think about that directly affects how powerful that testimonial is.
I’m talking about the little section that follows their name. For example, Joe Schmoe, 30 Years Old, Kansas City, Former Plumber…etc
When you use specificity to expand on the source of the testimonial, you end up with a more believable and powerful one. Now the audience can relate to that person more, they can trust it because the details sound more believable, and there’s a chance that the person reading the testimonial might actually be in a very similar situation as the testimonial giver.
22) Research Findings
Research is naturally trustworthy.
It can either be done outside or inside. Meaning, research can come from scientists, the government, other businesses, or just other outside sources in general that took the time and money to do it.
It can also be done within your own business.
For example, Verizon has a commercial where they claim that no one really cares about unlimited data plans. Based on their own data, they’ve discovered that 2/3rd’s of all customers only use up to 5 gigs of data. So they are offering a 5gig data plan deal in response to that research and made a whole ad around it.
This is just as strong a proof element as anything else.
23) Visual Demonstrations
Demonstrations are probably the #1 most effective proof element you can ever apply to your landing pages… especially if it’s visual.
A visual demonstration requires no guesswork for the consumer. They just sit there and see your product do your thing. From there, they get to decide if they believe your claims or not.
These are very popular in infomercials. In fact, the people who pick products to appear on infomercials will avoid anything that does not allow for an easy and visual demonstration.
Without it, they’ll lose millions.
With it, they’ll win hundreds of millions.
24) Extreme Demonstrations
Extreme demonstrations are special.
Not only do they demonstrate the effectiveness of your product, but they do so in a head-turning, eye-popping, jaw-dropping way. This is also why they tend to be extremely viral.
One of the best examples of this is Blendtec.
The claim that their blender is the most powerful blender in the world.
To prove it, the guy who created the Blendtec will famously put in anything in there and let his product do the work. No “obvious” things like vegetables are allowed in there. He puts stuff like marbles and large pieces of wood. His blender then smashes through it all, proving his claim.
25) Sample Demonstration
Sometimes, the best way to promote your product is by allowing for a sample demonstration.
By this, I just mean regular samples.
Yes, like the food samples you come across in some stores. For food product specifically, it’s the most direct way to demonstrate your product tastes great.
With that said, there are variations to this form of demonstration.
For example, some supplement companies will create an entire sales pitch to sell a sample bottle. This obviously leads to higher conversions, because it’s both a proof element and an irresistible offer.
26) Customer Testimonials
Customer testimonials are a marketing classic.
They are by far the most popular form of social proof. That’s because they are effective and pretty easy to attain. They are used so much that some sales pitches will just be filled with customer testimonials and nothing else.
Suffice to say, you should be using them too.
Every company relies on customer testimonials. This includes companies as big as Amazon to the mom & pop shop down the corner.
So always be collecting testimonials even if you don’t need them at the moment.
27) Influencer Testimonials
Are you respected by your peers?
Ask them for testimonials.
If I’m a personal trainer and 20 other personal trainers point to me, letting others know I’m amazing, that’s saying something. Unlike a customer testimonial, it implies where I’m at in my profession.
Now, while they don’t replace customer testimonials, they are still extremely powerful.
They are also sometimes easier to acquire depending on your resources.
Also, depending on the reputation behind the influencer giving you the testimonial, the stronger it gets.
If I’m in fitness, getting a testimonial from Tony Horton is game-changing. I can make an entire pitch based on that alone.
28) Star Ratings
Everyone knows what it means to rated 5 stars.
In fact, in some industries, that alone could tell you everything you need to know about the business. For example, in the hotel industry, being a 5-star hotel is literally the pinnacle of proof.
So why are these so effective?
The first is that most people have seen star ratings millions of times before. Hotels, restaurants, movies…etc
The second is that they are visual. There is really no mistaking a 3-star place versus a 5-star place. You can see the obvious difference between one and the other.
Last, they say a lot fast.
Because of the two points above, we can skim and immediately know how credible/trustworthy that product or service is.
29) Audio Testimonials
There’s a reason why podcasts are so popular.
You can still do stuff while consuming information.
The same goes for audio testimonials.
It’s inevitable that people are going to be doing multiple things, even if you’re on a landing page with only 1 goal. So at least optimize for it.
No, that doesn’t mean just to put an audio player like if was the early 2000’s. At that point, you’re going way to far backward. Unless your audience is 60+, then I wouldn’t even think of it. Even then, best not too.
With that said, you can just have a video with a static image, but an audio testimonial. Many podcasts do this when repurposing their content on Youtube. It’s proven to work.
30) Video Testimonials
The best type of medium for a testimonial is video.
At that point, you have visual and audio. When you can see the person’s face, it’s much easier to connect with them and watch their body language. When you can listen to them, you can pick up their voice tonality.
The majority of community is non-verbal, so video testimonials are the best way to deliver a well-rounded message, including testimonials.
You can go really high-end or you can go low-end.
And when you have video, you can always repurpose it into audio or images or just text. So it allows for repurposing of that same testimonial.
In other words, it’s the ideal method of delivering testimonial.
31) Founder Testimonial
The general consensus is that testimonials should come from a 3rd party source.
This is true most of the time.
However, depending on the size and reputation of the business, a testimonial from the actual founder can act as a proof element.
Think of Apple.
Yes, they have millions of customers paying thousands of dollars for some of the world’s best phones, tables, and computers.
But where would they be if Steve Jobs wasn’t their biggest fan?
Apple is huge company, but Steve Jobs was awed by them. He was a great communicator who’s opinion was respected because he always delivered.
So even when gave his own review of the product, it would mean something.
You can do the same depending on your business.
32) Client List
This is a popular one, especially if you’re in client-services.
Basically, your landing page is going to have a section of the past clients you’ve worked with. If you don’t have 1-on-1 clients because you’re a product, you can still position them as past customers or “trusted by”.
This is powerful.
It’s a form of borrowing proof, but at its best because you’re saying they actually did and liked doing business with you.
If you’re a small company, but it shows you’ve worked with Nike, you’re set.
The bigger the brands on your client list, the more effective.
33) Social Following
You won’t usually see this on a landing page.
Maybe because most companies don’t really care too much about how many “likes” they have on Facebook, so they don’t really value it.
However, it is a powerful proof element.
If you have a big following, use it!
At best, you’ll see people promoting their email newsletters saying something like, “100,000 people can’t be wrong”. That is with email newsletter subscribers though. Those are generally harder to get.
However, you can use the same tactic for social, which is much easier to get. Essentially, the more fans you have on a specific social media channel or all of them put together, the stronger the proof element you have.
If you’re popular, you’ll be more trusted. Period.
34) Case Studies
Case studies are one of the strongest forms of proof there is.
It’s similar to a testimonial, except it’s on steroids. You’re not just asking for a quote.
In a case study, you’re providing 3 critical details. The first is the problem that the client had. The second are the action steps you took to solve the problem. The third is the result. Within those 3 steps, you can include quotes, breakdowns, and more.
Because of its in-depth details, it’s much valuable.
Instead of just taking the word of a customer that your work is great, the potential client can now see what went into getting the results.
35) Audio Case Studies
The thing with case studies is that they can be long.
They are documents filled with details. Some case studies can actually span multiples pages of content. This is the exact reason why an audio version of the case study can be useful.
Delivered in an MP3 or as a stream online, a case studio in audio format can be consumed relatively easily. This is especially true in B2B situations, where most case studies are use in anyway.
Of course, you have to adapt to the format.
With no visuals, a focus on effectively delivering the message is critical.
36) Video Case Studies
Case studies in video format can be powerful.
You can pretty much have anything you want on it. You can film the actual person, you can do screen captures, you can display data dynamically, and more. It’s only limited by the skill of the person doing the video.
Heck, some video case studies are practicality mini-movies.
Descriptive, understandable, and entertaining. These are the reasons why video case studies are powerful.
With that said, pairing them up with text can be helpful.
The one downside of video is that they take time to consume. This can be easily combatted against with a downloadable PDF file for those who want to skim or keep the case study.
37) Social Proof
Social proof is a broad term, but it’s powerful.
No one really wants to be the first person to take a chance on a product or service. And even if you’ve had success with your customers, the absence of social proof on your landing page can make it seem like you’re new.
The truth is, we would much rather do business with those who have already had success with other people.
This can be difficult if your business is just starting out. If this is the case, then attaining social proof should be a priority. Once you have some social proof, that can then lead snowball into more.
38) Borrow Proof From Media
One of the ultimate forms of credibility is the association of a famous media company.
So why not try to figure out a way borrow proof from a media company?
The most basic and popular way to do this is using an “As Seen On” section in your website. If you or your company have been featured on something like Forbes or Entrepreneur magazine. This is some serious credibility.
Now, you don’t have to be on a big, mainstream magazine like that.
If you’re in an industry that has its own niched magazine, those work too.
39) Borrow Proof From Companies
Another source of great proof is that of other companies.
The great thing about using other companies as proof is that they are “niche specific”. In other words, you can target specific companies within your market that others would respect. This means a better chance of success since you’re dealing with non-mainstream companies.
In this situation, you’re going to have a “past clients” section on your landing page. With multiple, targeted “past clients”, you’ll have yourself a rock-solid proof element on your landing page.
40) Borrow Proof From Celebrities
Not all clients are created equal.
If you’re selling a software program and you have Mark Cuban on your landing page saying your stuff is great, that’s stronger proof than having 10 regular testimonials.
This was actually a tactic used by ConvertKit. Nathan Berry, founder of ConvertKit, made it an effort to attract specific, high-profile customers such as Pat Flynn. This is one of the reasons why ConvertKit was able to do so well once they pivoted to serving professional bloggers.
So start figuring out who you can target so that you can borrow their “celebrity status” on your landing page
41) Borrow Proof From Experts
Other experts are an excellent source to having a rock-solid proof element on your landing page.
Almost by definition, other people respect and trust experts. When an expert recommends something, then it becomes much easier for others to think it is something good.
So think about…
What other experts in your industry would be to give a good word about your product or service?
Now, while it’s always great to have a bunch… even just 1 is powerful.
Once you can get some, then use their names on your landing pages. This will immediately boost your credibility and improve your conversion rates in the process.
42) Slang Terms
Most people don’t realize this…
But merely talking in the same way your audience does is a huge proof element. Now, I don’t just mean language like English or Spanish. That’s obvious. I’m talking about real slang terms.
For example, how people who come from southern U.S states talk differently from northeastern states. It’s still English, but there is a difference.
So if you’re landing page is targeted toward a specific demographic, then it helps to make sure the copy is written in the way that target audience speaks like.
43) Product Reviews
Product reviews are a classic proof element.
They are also some of the more influential depending on how genuine they appear. That’s because unlike stars, testimonials, or anything similar… product reviews are more in-depth about the actual product.
You’ll actually see these a lot on Youtube.
You’ll also see it a lot in places like Amazon where people will sometimes post up an entire product review in that testimonial box.
If you can have real product reviews, even if they find slight flaws in your product or service, on your landing page, you can possibly boost your conversions.
44) Creator Reviews
A creator review is interesting.
It’s part sales pitch, but also part genuine reaction.
A creator review is when the actual creator of the product gives a real, in-depth review of it. The key to pulling this off though is that it must be real and genuine. The more honest the creator is about the pro’s and con’s about his product, the better.
This is because everyone hypes there stuff.
So in other words, the real goal of the video is to build trust… NOT to sell. This is a huge difference. Do this correctly and not only will the product be more sellable, but the entire brand will be trusted more in general.
45) Valuable Content
Content is the name of the game these days.
Now, content is usually seen as a content marketing strategy. It’s there to help you build a whole new audience, get their trust, and buy. This is totally accurate and extremely effective.
But how does it fit into a landing page?
What few people realize is that education is actually a form of sales.
So you can create valuable content about the “secret” behind why your product works and what that means for them, in an educational, non-sales pitch way.
46) Quote An Authority
Quoting an authority is powerful.
But in this case, we’re going for association.
This is different from getting a testimonial, an endorsement, or really anything else that I’ve mentioned in this post.
So lets say, for example, that you’re selling a workout program that uses Tabata and there’s an expert out there that says Tabata’s are amazing. Technically, you can just quote him on your landing page. The point being he recommends Tabata, but isn’t saying that he directly recommends your product.
Now, I’m not a lawyer by any means.
So you may have to check with one before you do this. You can also just ask that expert to allow you to use their quote.
47) Quote Customer Problems/Questions
Being able to understand what your customer thinks is critical to delivering a great sales message on a landing page. If you can relay that understanding back to them effectively, then it’s even more powerful.
So why not literally cut & paste a popular problem or question that a particular customer asked?
By doing so, you will probably do a better job at relaying to them that you do understand and that others like them also come to your company for help.
This is such an easy thing to implement that most companies forget to do it or they try to alter the original message way too much.
When it comes to proof elements, the ability to relay a genuine message is critical.
48) Founder Or Team Photo
Who this landing page and offer is from is important.
Most companies will defer to just putting up their logo, in the hopes that’s enough to build proof or they’ll half-ass the whole employee thing.
Truth is, people do business with other people.
The more real and trustworthy those people are, the more likely customers will actually buy from your landing page.
The key is that it can’t be like stock-footage like stuff.
It’s important to show personality, of which everyone has a unique one. While all of this can still be “on brand”, each person must have their “voice”. This means every persons pictures and descriptions should be personalized based on who they actually are.
49) Financial Guarantees
Financial guarantee’s are the bread and butter of guarantees.
The most popular financial guarantee is the 100% money back guarantee. There’s also stuff like the double your money back guarantee, plus the many variations of it.
Point is, you’re offering someone their money back if they aren’t satisfied with the product. This can have qualifiers of course. For example, they must show proof that they actually used the product before they can claim the guarantee.
Money is big factor in making a sale.
In fact, it’s one of the biggest things that keep people from buying and also feeling remorse after they buy.
With a financial guarantee, you can prove you stand behind your product while easing the anxiety they feel about buying.
50) Support Guarantees
Not every business can deal with money back guarantees and neither is that real solution that every customer wants if things don’t workout the first time.
This is why there are support guarantees.
A support guarantee is when you guarantee support until the end goal is reach. For a client-based business, this can mean revisions until something converts. For a consumer facing business, it can mean free repairs.
There are a lot of ways to handle it.
Now, you do have to keep in mind if you can actually afford to do this. So knowing your numbers is essential.
51) Competitor Guarantees
These are rarely used.
However, you may have come across them when you’ve tried to buy an appliance like a refrigerator or a washing machine…. most likely when they are on sale.
A comparison guarantee is one where you’re essentially saying that if the product is not working, you’ll get a refund of the product and you’ll also buy them a competitors product.
This is risky, but it’s attractive an unique.
You can play with around with the details. It’s only limited to your imagination. But basically, you’re helping them to switch to a competitors product.
52) Reverse Proof
Most proof elements are designed to prove yourself to your customer?
But what about proof elements that are designed to have them prove themselves to you?
This is actually an age-old sales technique that plays to the fact we want things that we cannot have. It also helps for letting customers know ahead of time who you’re actually for.
One great example of this is IMscalable.
They specifically say, “If you can afford $3 per lead or $60 per customer”. It doesn’t matter how much money you have, if you don’t fit in that criteria, you can’t have the service.
There are other variations of this, but the idea is the same.
Get the customer to chase you.
Unless you’re a copywriter, this one doesn’t come to mind very often.
Yet, it’s one of the most powerful things you can do. In fact, metaphors are responsible for billions of dollars in sales.
An effective metaphor allows for complete understanding of the main message. It drives the point home in a way a regular explanation can’t. It also positions it in a way that’s more trustworthy and valuable.
This can fit anywhere on your landing page…whether it’s text or on a video.
Sometimes, it can be used on the name of the product itself.
54) Don’t Exaggerate
This isn’t really a proof element…
But exaggeration is a concept that takes away credibility and can reduce the impact any other proof element you have on your landing page.
Now, exaggeration isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
“Controlled” exaggeration is especially useful to create excitement. Many successful products do this to great effect.
However, it’s different when you take it too far, especially if it’s exaggeration of claims.
The need to exaggerate usually comes from the fact the owner is trying to compensate for the lack of an amazing product.
You can see this in those lose 30 pounds in 30 days ads. Everyone knows it’s not possible. Yes, it will still make sales, but the company that uses this messaging won’t be seen as trustworthy as other companies that don’t exaggerate.
55) Believable Promise
This is the opposite of an exaggeration.
Typically, the idea when making a claim is that you should always promise the best possible case scenario that can be backed up. However, this isn’t always the smartest route.
In some markets, it’s much more effective to underpromise.
For example, Ramit Sethi is the creator of Earn1k On The Side. The entire premise of the course is to help anyone earn $1,000/month as a freelancer while still working their main job.
Now, the same techniques can help someone build a $100,000 freelance business, but he doesn’t promise that. Instead, he chooses his much more believable and doable $1,000/month to make the sale.
56) Takeaway Language
Takeaway language is super useful.
Most people don’t use it enough on their landing pages.
What you’re doing here is try to repel everyone who your product or service is not for. This isn’t skimming over the general reasons. This is actually going in-depth into all the exact people that shouldn’t buy.
You’ll see this often with products trying to go after an “anti-guru” route.
For example, a landing page for a digital marketing system that specifically says this product is not for the get rich quick crowd, it’s not for the lazy, and it’s not for those looking for that push-button easy solution.
57) Product Origin Story
Most products are commodities.
That’s why a lot of the major successes happen to come when there are innovations to the product itself.
But what do you do when that’s not possible? And how do brands that sell essentially the same thing get people to buy their stuff?
The answer is simple… story.
More specifically, the story of the origin of the product.
Maybe this particular product was created differently, maybe you can share a whole new story that’s never been told about it, or maybe you can just take an existing story that no one talks about and be the first to talk about it.
58) Owner Origin Story
I find it funny when people downplay the owner/creator of a product.
We see the Steve Jobs of the world and assume they just are that amazing. However, the truth is that it’s all manufactured. Furthermore, that connection with the owners “origin story” does serve as a proof element for the product you’re selling.
The goal is to have customers to trust in you more over the logo’s your competitors hide behind of.
This is definitely popular in entrepreneurship circles.
They love to hear how Steve Jobs raised like a phoenix, how Howard Shultz came from nothing, and how Elon Musk changed the world with ever startup he was involved in.
59) Empathy Of Emotions
Empathy is huge.
In fact, it’s fair to say that everything on your landing page should be there to build that empathy. If it doesn’t, then it raises some serious questions if it should be there at all.
To really put yourself in someone else’s shoes is a proof element that can literally make or break a landing page.
To apply this effectively though, you need to do a lot of customer research. This includes both things like surveys and actually getting on the phone with customers.
How do they feel about their problem? Why do they feel that way? How would they feel if it got solved? Why?…etc
All of these questions need to be answered and more.
60) Empathy of Situation
Not all empathy is just emotion-based.
It’s extremely important to also be empathetic of people’s situations. So while emotions are a non-physical, empathy of situation is physical.
For example, the living situation of minimum wage worker is completely different from that of someone who earns $1 million a year.
You then need to understand how their situation actually looks like, in detail.
For example, if someone is trying to lose weight, you can let them know that you understand how their belly looks like if they were pregnant. This is huge pain point for both men and women.
61) Admitting A Fault (Damaging Admission)
Perfectionism is very open to skepticism.
No one is perfect, so presenting yourself as if you were can actually lead to doubts about how genuine you are.
So if your landing page contains copy that talks about you as the creator, then it might be in your best interest to admit a fault. The same goes for your product. If there’s a fault that people should know, then let them know.
It’s a million times better to admit your faults upfront than to have people discover it themselves after they’ve paid.
62) Celebrity Endorsements
Just about every commercial on TV uses celebrity endorsements.
Whether it’s Jessica Simpson being the spokesperson for Proactive or Tiger Woods being the face of Nike, they are all celebrity endorsement. Today, you can also include Youtube and Instagram stars to the mix.
They work because of influence.
If this person likes a product, then it should be good. At least that’s the mentality behind the people who buy because of that endorsement.
So why does everyone use this?
First, because it just works. It’s been used for decades and it’s not stopping anytime soon.
Second, because it can be bought. So it becomes a very fast way add a high quality proof to a landing page.
63) Raw Photos
Pictures say a thousand words.
However, the majority of photos are pretty doctored. In fact, some are so doctored than people will openly point it out. Fitness before & after pics are treated like this all the time, even if the results were real.
So why homemade photos?
Because they are real. At least, they are positioned as real in our minds. What we see is exactly what we’re going to get.
Now, that doesn’t mean these photos are used straight from your camera. They can be “fluffed up” a little. But the closer it looks like if someone took it from their personal camera, the better.
64) Raw Videos
Most people don’t know this…
But the real secret to P90X’s success was their homemade video testimonials. Instead of trying to create these nice looking, professionally produced testimonials… customers actually preferred raw footage.
Because of this Beachbody did everything they could to get customers to take real footage of them doing the workouts and telling people their thoughts. They then edited it down and used them in their infomercials.
P90X is now the best selling workout program in history, to the tune of almost $1 billion in sales.
Suffice to say, these “homemade videos” work. So if you’re in a market where everything is doctored up, try raw footage instead.
65) PR And Media Exposure
PR and media exposure is huge.
If you look at any Kickstarter landing page, you’ll notice that some of the most successful products have rows of logos from media sites they appeared in.
That’s not the only version though…
For example, some landing pages use videos where the owner appears on a news station talking about their product. This in particular is powerful, because it’s usually involves mainstream media.
The great thing about PR though is that it can snowball. One place features you after the other, especially if you’re proactive about it.
66) Viral Social Exposure
Viral social exposure is different from regular PR.
Normally, PR comes in the form of being on mainstream news or even industry specific news sources.
Viral social exposure is when you go viral on social media.
An amazing example of this is Blendtech. The videos about how you can blend anything in a Blendtech made it go viral. These videos are now essentially infomercials that went viral and any one of them can be used on a landing page.
Plus, the traffic that is gained through this viral exposure is pretty likely to buy.
And you can leverage how many people saw your viral exposure by using the number of views as a selling point.
67) Sales Data
If you have impressive sales numbers, share it.
It’s almost like social proof.
So imagine there’s a new product you just discovered. It looks great, but you aren’t too sure if it’s “bug free” or if it actually works. So you go out searching for things like testimonials to make sure others before you had success with the product.
But then you see that 2 million units of this product has been sold.
That means 2 million people before you tried it. So technically, if 2 million units were sold, then it has to be good. There is no way that 2 millions units could be sold if it was a bad product.
68) Geographic Reach Data
Similar to sales data, if you’ve sold your product to people all over the world, that acts as a strong proof element as well.
In this situation, you go back to your data and find out that people from 52 different countries have bought your product. Not only that, but at least 1 person from every continent in the world, minus Antarctica.
This is a strong proof element.
You have paying customers from all around the globe, just like the big brands do.
If you sell digital products, this is actually one of the easiest proof elements you can acquire.
69) Refund Data
Refund data is revealing.
While low refunds is not necessarily a sign of great a product on the business end, it does mean that to the customer. So if you have low refunds, then use it as on your landing page as a selling point.
Low refunds make for a great proof element because they are easy to collect (every business has this type of data, whether good or bad), it’s partly “manufacturable”, and it’s easily understood.
Will it 10X your sales? Not really.
But it adds to the perception of a rock-solid product that does what it says it can do.
This is probably one of the simplest ways to add a proof element to your landing pages.
Literally just add your logo to the page.
This lets people know they are working with a real company. Even if your company is brand new, it still gives a feeling of safety to the customer.
Now, if you’re an established brand with a strong presence, then this works even better. For example, if you’re Nike, then your logo is going to be much more influential than a new brand.
Every business should use this as one of their many proof elements.
71) Business Transparency
How transparent are you about your business?
For the most part, some businesses are super secretive. This is for obvious reasons. What happens inside of a business is usually proprietary. Any mention of it can give an advantage to competitors.
With that said, this gives an advantage to businesses that are open to sharing what happens inside.
Pat Flynn of Smart Passive income is famous for this.
When you “open the kimono” to your business, you automatically become more trustworthy. It doesn’t need to be the inner workings. However, things like revenue and profit margin counts.
72) Product Transparency
Businesses are very selective about what they share about their products.
This is especially true for bigger brands, who make products using questionable methods. If it were to be revealed, it could actually ruin the reputation of your brand.
However, if your product is made in acceptable ways, then product transparency can help in a huge way.
For example, many people would love to know that your product is made in a state-of-the art facility where people get paid well, no animals get hurt, and it helps the local community.
In fact, many people will pay extra for that.
So even if you can be transparent about your product on your landing page, do it.
73) Owner Transparency
The person behind the product has a lot of influence over how trustworthy the product really is.
This is why there are many movies about successful entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg. In these movies, their faults are downplayed while their successes are magnified. As their legend grows, so does their products.
The same applies to your product, minus the movies.
The more transparent the owner is, the more they can trust the things he owns and creates.
This is especially true today with social media, where everyone is sharing stuff about their lives 24/7.
74) Published Author
Are you a published author?
If so, this should be in all of your marketing materials now.
If not, then think about becoming on as soon as possible.
Being a published author is still the fastest and most enduring way to become a credible experts. If you write the book about your subject, you will be that key figure even if you’re not necessarily the best one at it.
That’s why it’s such a great proof element.
The effect multiplies if you can associate yourself with a particular list like being a New York Times best selling author or even an Amazon best selling author.
75) Movie Publisher
This one isn’t talked about a lot.
That’s because very few ever think about doing it. It’s not really common sense to think that a movie you publish yourself can have any effect to your credibility, especially on a landing page… but it can.
Just look at the Youtubers out there who make their own mini-movies.
Their fans trust them almost unconditionally.
Now, whether you use an actual movie on your landing page or use the movie as the thing that goes before your landing page will be up to you, the business you’re in, and the way you set up these assets, but it works.
Do you have any accomplishments?
If you go back to when you were applying for college, you probably tried to do this a lot. Ambitious high school kids are always trying to become the president of this and the direct of that.
Same idea here.
Maybe you’re a New York Times best selling author.
Maybe you were given some kind of award.
Maybe you hit some kind of record that’s important in your industry.
For example, if you’re selling strongman gear and you’re a world-record holder in a strongman event, that can help a lot in selling your product.
77) 3rd Party Angle
Most sales letters are written in the first person.
This is mostly because the person writing the sales letter is the same one who created the product. So it’s only natural that you talk in this way.
However, what if someone else made the product?
Most companies will opt to keep a neutral tone or a “we” tone. However, John Carlton famously use a 3rd party tone rarely seen today.
He would write as the owner of the company who endorsed the person who made this new product.
When you read it, the whole thing almost sounds like a long-form testimonial. This is amazing because now your landing page IS the proof and not just a sales pitch.
78) Media Association
Placement is really important.
In fact, one of the selling points behind native ad networks like Taboola is that your native ad will appear on mainstream sites like The Wallstreet Journal.
This is important.
That’s because it’s a form of association.
If your ad appears in a highly credible place like the Wallstreet Journal, then it frame the landing page in a highly credible way as well.
So yes, this is not a proof element that would appear on the actual landing page. This would appear before people get to it.
However, it does help the way people perceive your product once they reach it.
The way data is presented is important.
And one of the best ways to present data is through a percentage.
This not only eliminate huge numbers, but it also makes it much easier to translate into graphical representations. And even if it’s not visual, the 1 to 100% range is well understood by all people.
Like I’ve mentioned multiple times in this post, being able to accurately relay data is a proof element. It gives people much more confidence of what they are buying.
It also simplifies the process of deciding what product they should buy.
So if you can add percentages when you’re talking about numbers, then you’ll effectively improve your sales message.
Percentiles are a special kind of data point.
Unlike other forms of data representation, percentiles put you in certain “box”.
For example, when you took the SAT’s in highschool or when you were calculated as your GPA as a senior, your final number would put you in a certain percentile. This wasn’t a number anymore, but a certain group of people.
So even if you barely a top 10% student, you were still in the top 10%.
The same idea for landing pages.
If your product can be presented in a positive percentile format, then it’s a great idea to add it to your landing page. It can possibly boost the perceived effectiveness or quality of your product depending on how you position it.
81) Survey Results
Big companies do this all the time because it works.
When a teeth whitening product is said to be recommended by 4 out of 5 dentists, then obviously it should be a great product. This is excellent positioning.
People think that you just simplified 4 out of 5. In other words, they are thinking that 4 out of 5 really actually means 40 out of 50 or 400 out of 500.
In reality though, you only actually asked 5 dentists.
You can replicate this with a simple 1 question survey to your own audience. Once done, just take the data and if it’s great, add it in to your landing page.
82) Proof Against Normal Advice
Proof that shows why your product is the best is only 1 side of the story.
To best maximize your sales pitch, you also need to prove why all other products aren’t up to par with yours.
For example, if I’m selling a nutrition program that uses IIYFM, then just giving proof with IIYFM would only partially help sell my program. For best results, I need proof why things like intermittent fasting, the Zone diet, or other popular diets just don’t get the job done.
Now, it may not be a smart idea to specifically name your competitors products. However, methodologies or scientific data is allowed.
Just keep it accurate.
83) Satirical Proof
You wouldn’t think this is a proof element.
However, it is.
I first saw this in a Facebook group called The Cult of Copy. It’s the biggest copywriting group on Facebook and it’s run by Colin Theriot.
He created an image that basically made fun of the whole “As Seen On” proof element. He put his picture next to a bunch of big media brands like Forbes and wrote at the top, “Not seen on”.
This is actually a great idea.
Because it downplays the importance of having that proof element. It makes you “above” that kind of stuff. It also pre-emptively lets people know that they shouldn’t expect all of these grand proof elements, which eliminates people’s expectations, drops their guard, and makes them listen to you.
84) Radical Honesty
This is usually used humorously.
In this case, you’re overtly telling people what you want from them and why. The point is to cut to the real reason, not the “PR’ED” version that everyone else says.
For example, there’s this site called Moneylab.co, which is a site about money making experiments.
On his opt-in forms, he’ll tell you straight up to sign up, but you won’t get anything in return. He’ll answer that objection by telling you and making you feel like you don’t need a bribe to sign up to his list.
This is genius.
It’s not a proof element because you’re being funny.
It’s a proof element because it unmasks the real truth about why others do stuff and why he doesn’t have too.
85) Proof Placement
Where you place your proof is important.
When someone lands on your landing page, their eyes start to go all haywire. They’ll look at all of these things and move down the page. Now, if you have a great offer that is aligned with their needs and you have great copy, they will keep going down the page.
However, the closer you get to asking for the sale, the more anxiety they feel.
Anxiety then peaks right at your buy buttons or any call to action really.
This is where you need to put some proof elements to alleviate that anxiety.
86) Location of Authority
If you’re using video or pictures, this can help a lot.
I first realized this watching an ad from James Altucher.
To sell his product, he created a 30min+ VSl. However, the first 10 minutes consisted of him delivering his pitch on a stage.
This gave the illusion of authority.
As far as I know, there was no audience. It was not an event of any kind. It was just a stage he put together and filmed himself on it. And while there was no claims about the stage, he did appear more important.
You can do the same.
It doesn’t have to be in the same, manufactured way.
But if you did actually speak on stage, then a video or picture showcasing that really does help improve your credibility on the landing page.
87) Company Position
There is a big difference between the founder of the company and the graphic designer.
And by that, I mean that the founder’s voice holds a greater weight when it comes to the landing page. Generally speaking anyway.
For example, if something goes wrong at Amazon, then Jeff Bezos is going to issue a response. When this happens, you know Amazong is taking it seriously. The same goes for Starbucks. If Howard Shultz issues a statement, it’s a big deal.
So if you pull out your “CEO” card, then it serves as a proof element on your landing page.
It directly says that you’re willing to put your name on what you’re selling.
88) Layman Positioning
While an authoritative positioning does help a lot.
What do you do if you’re not an authority?
Easy. You downplay it.
For example, if you’re offering health advice and you’re not a doctor, then don’t try to pretend you are one. This is not only unethical, but also illegal. Neither is required for you to sell.
Instead, tell people straight up you’re not a doctor. And the proceed by telling them how you’re a normal guy “just like them” who just happened to found the solution to the problem because they themselves had it.
This is a proof element because it’s honest.
It’s also relatable.
I’m not a science geek.
However, if you’re in a market where science is a big part of your sales pitch, then it’s very wise to cite all your sources.
For example, if you’re selling a book about intermittent fasting, not everyone is going to think it’s a good idea. So you cite all your sources as possible to show that you are correct in your claims.
If you can do this in bulk, even better.
In other words, having 30 sources is better than just having 5. The amount that you have directly correlates to how trustworthy your product is since most people are going to focus on the amount instead of actually reading through each one.
90) Empathetic Photos
Normally, you would think that straight men would want to see pictures of women and straight women would want to see pictures of men.
In marketing though, it’s the opposite.
Men want to see pictures of other men and women of other women.
Just look at magazines like Men’s Health and Women’s health to confirm this.
This is the power of empathetic photos.
What they see on these magazines are usual the ideal version of themselves or at least that’s what is going on in their “reptilian brain”. The men who see the 6 pack on the cover of Men’s Health also wants that 6 pack himself. That’s why he’s attracted to it.
With that said, empathetic photos also include photos of their current situation.
So if their overweight, then photos of overwight people that look like them works.
Hence the power of before/after photos.
91) Professional Design
To some marketers, design is an afterthought.
However, science has shown that design is a critical component to building trust and credibility.
A person will judge how trustworthy a landing page is within seconds of landing on it. If it doesn’t immediately strike them as something trustworthy, then it’s not… not matter how credible the product actually is.
One great example of this are software products.
Some look like scammy get rich quick offers. Those will immediately be distrusted by the 99.99% of people on the spot.
While other landing pages, like that of SumoMe, will be trusted on the spot.
92) Face of Seller
People can’t relate to brands.
It’s just a logo.
However, people relate extremely well to other people. So the face of the person selling the product can help a ton in selling the product.
Well, much like other types of proof elements, it sign that you’re willing to put your name on the line for the product. It also shows that you’re a real person and not just corporation, which many people distrust.
93) Product Association
You’ve probably seen this on Instagram when an influencer is using multiple products.
Sometimes, they’ll group a couple of products together, showing what they use. For argument sake, lets just say they paired your soap with Paul Mitchell and Dove products.
This creates an association that says you’re product is at the level of Paul Mitchell and Dove. Really easy, huh?
If this does happen, try to capture the video or screenshot and use it on your landing page. If you can back it up a testimonial, then it becomes even more powerful. Even if you can’t though, it can do well.
This is why people feel great to see their newly published book in a store where other famous books are also located at.
94) Related Proof
Lets say one of the objections you need to answer on your landing page is why you’re credible to teach a certain topic and why they should listen to you versus someone else.
The first thing that comes to mind is direct social proof, like testimonials and case studies or even your own personal results.
But what if you don’t have anything that is both direct and impressive?
You can use related proof elements that still backup your claims.
For example, if you’re selling a how to get clients product through a certain method, but you don’t take on clients… you can still use the fact that you use that certain method as back up proof. The difference is just you’re using it for another goal.
This is a way to position yourself as an authority.
95) Title Association
There are some titles, like doctor or lawyer, that you can’t call yourself unless you’ve gone through all the hoops to become one.
For most things though, like marathon runner or copywriter, you can just call yourself one. Now, of course, don’t lie. You actually have to be one. What I’m saying though is that there’s no barrier to entry, yet it positions you as a credible source.
So if you’re a copywriter, call yourself one and put it on your landing page. If it makes sense to the pitch.
This is the same way Tony Robbins became a multi-million dollar “performance coach” even though many think he’s just another motivational speaker.
96) Speaking Ability
Back in the old days, this used to mean everything.
Your oration skills had to be top-notch if you wanted to persuade Roman senators to do something. Funny enough, things have not changed. Just the medium and audience.
So if you have a video on your landing page, keep in mind that the way you speak your message matters.
This is the same reason why Nixon lost to JFK. John was calm, cool, and collected during all of the debates. He seemed like he was a real leader, with a real vision, and real decisiveness. Nixon, on the other hand, could barely perform. This led to John winning by a landslide.
Barack Obama was also famous for his ability to sway millions of crowed because of the way he spoke.
So if you’re trying to sell something using your voice, keep this in mind.
97) Good Looks
As much as some people would like to say otherwise due to unfairness, it’s true.
People like to see good-looking people.
This is the sole reason why there’s a huge modeling industry. It’s also why many celebrities just happen to look great as well.
Fortunately, this does include being well groomed. So even if you’re not a natural looker, looking sharp is still really possible.
So unless your brand revolves around the dirty, street look… then try to always look sharp. It makes people more comfortable and confident about what you’re selling.
98) Believable Proof
Just because proof is real, doesn’t mean it’s believable.
For example, lets say you’re selling a make money online product and a customer actually made 7 figures in 12 months. This is shockingly abnormal. While some people will love this message, most will be immediately skeptical. This is taking a step backwards.
You don’t just want to put up the best of the best results.
The closer you can get to “typical” results, the better. I put “typical” in quotations because you still need to focus on the ones that show great results, but at least they are believable.
Losing 10 pounds in 6 weeks is believable. Losing 30 pounds in 30 days isn’t.
99) No “Small Print”
One of the reasons people hate to do business with large corporations is all the small print.
No one really has the time or the patience to read and understand every single part of contract or warranty. There is just so much of it and in such small print. And most of the time, you can’t find it before the purchase
This is why companies that can relieve that pressure do a better job at increasing their conversion rates. There is nothing to hide. And while they also do have their own policies for legal reasons, they are not as daunting to check over.
Most companies don’t do this though.
But if you can do it and make it a selling point, you’ve got a proof element that’s rarely seen, but highly appreciated.
You can debate if this is a proof element at all.
However, it does directly affect trust.
There is a reason why Fortune 500 companies will spend billions to have their logo’s wherever your eyeballs are. That’s because the more frequently you see it, the more you become familiar with it. So when the time comes to picking a company to do business with, you’re going to go with them since you’re familiar with them.
Same idea here.
The more times someone sees your landing page or at least the ad that would send them to your landing page, the more trustworthy it becomes overtime. It’s an actual legit offering, not a possible scam.
101) Removal Of Unexpected Annoyances
People hate unexpected surprises when they sign up for something.
No one wants to sign up to an email list and start receiving spam. No one wants to sign up and then start getting calls from people selling them stuff…etc
So while this is something you would definitely need to split-test, it’s generally a good idea to calm people’s nerves by telling them upfront that this is a safe “transaction” between you and them.
There will not be any unexpected annoyances.