Monday, August 22, 2011

Should you give it away? Free or not for free? Let them work for it!

A few years ago Amazon started offering free shipping of orders over a certain amount. This worked well – people bought more – except for in France, where there was no increase in sales. Instead of offering free shipping on orders, the French division priced the shipping one franc. When they changed to free, there was a dramatic sales increase.
Some pieces of research tells us that fee attracts customers - but other studies say that if you are for free, you are not considered valuable, and that people for example think that costly wine tastes better. What to do? Give free samples or not? Throw a sale or keep prices high?
I guess it depends on the product. You can attract people to try something that is expensive by offering a free trial, if you keep it limited. The best thing is to ask for something in return. As for the Amazon example, they are not simply giving stuff away - the condition is that you buy something in the shop! 
When working with sampling, why not ask the receiver for a signature on a petition or for a tweet? I love the "pay with a tweet" idea.  

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