Creating a sense of urgency is a powerful strategy to boost conversions on your eCommerce website. By making customers feel that they need to act quickly, you can encourage them to make a purchase. With Black Friday just around the corner, we’ve gathered eight effective ways - complete with examples - to create urgency and increase conversions on your eCommerce website.

1. Limited-time offers.

Promote time-bound deals and discounts, such as flash sales, daily deals, or weekend specials. Implement countdown timers on product pages or at checkout to show the time left for a specific offer or discount to expire. In the example below, the high protein healthy snacking brand Misfits has added a countdown timer across the top of the site with “Discount expires in…” messaging.

2. Delivery countdown.

Promote limited free delivery periods, or for customers who want the product quickly, implementing a delivery countdown is a great tactic to encourage conversion and acts as a visual reminder of how long they have to make the purchase. This can easily be reset every day. For example, Rave Coffee has added countdown messaging “Order within 2 hours and 3 minutes to get delivery in the next 1-2 days” with a vibrating alarm clock as an additional design flourish.

3. Low stock alerts.

Display the number of items left in stock for a particular product, signalling scarcity and encouraging customers to act quickly before the item is sold out. You can use messages like "Only 1 left”, as premium fashion retailer RIXO has done in the example below, to create urgency.

4. Fear of missing out (FOMO) messaging.

Craft persuasive copy that conveys the idea that missing out on the current offer would be a regrettable decision. Use phrases like "Don't miss out!" or "Limited quantities available”, or, as the example below from ASOS shows, “Selling fast."

5. Exclusive VIP offers.

Offer special discounts or early access to products for your loyal customers or members of your email list. This makes customers feel valued and motivated to take advantage of the exclusive opportunity. Rat & Boa has achieved this with its members-only “access-all-areas” pass that provides members with unique rewards and bespoke benefits.

6. Abandoned cart reminders.

Send automated emails to customers who have items in their cart but haven't completed the purchase. Include a reminder about the urgency of the items and possibly offer a small discount to entice them to finalize their purchase. As shown by retailers Casper and ASOS below, this type of abandoned cart messaging can be fun and friendly too.

7. Social proof.

Display real-time notifications of recent purchases made by other customers. This technique leverages the principle of social proof, showing potential buyers that others are actively purchasing from a particular product. Global online marketplace Etsy has utilised this with the “In 15 baskets” message above the price; see examples below.

8. Coming soon.

By generating anticipation among customers for an upcoming product release, you gradually heighten their curiosity, especially if you provide enticing teasers. As the product's availability in your store draws near, this curiosity transforms into a sense of urgency. As seen in the example below, premium fashion retailer Wyse London employed this technique with a simple “coming soon” message on graphics.

Summary: a clear path to increased conversions.

With these eight ways to create urgency and increase conversions, you’ve now got a path to peak season success!

Remember, of course, that the goal is to create a genuine sense of urgency without misleading customers. Additionally, ensure that your website's user experience is optimised for easy navigation, quick loading times, and a seamless checkout process to complement these new strategies.

By strategically implementing these urgency-inducing techniques, you can effectively increase conversions on your eCommerce website and drive higher sales volumes.

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